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Introduction to Design and Engineering Applications (IDEA)

A hands-on engineering class inspired by RRCC students! In summer of 2012, students from the Engineers for a Sustainable World - Engineering Club met with RRCC’s RISE program (Red Rocks Institute for STEM Education) to explore ways to bring more hands-on learning about engineering into their education. Working with a professional engineer, RISE and the students developed a project that would give students real world engineering experience. The result of this collaboration is a new learning experience called IDEA: Introduction to Design and Engineering Applications.

IDEA introduces students to engineering through a project provided by either campus leadership, community organization or other external client. Through the IDEA Program, students will:

  • Explore engineering disciplines
  • Practice engineering through real world projects
  • Learn about sustainable engineering design
  • Understand how math and science apply to engineering
  • Understand how creativity fits into engineering
  • Meet and network with professional engineers

Meet the IDEA Instructor – Jeremy Beard, P.E.

Past IDEA projects

Design and build a fish and vegetable aquaponics system for RRCC greenhouse (Fall 2012 - Spring 2013)

Aeration Build
Aeration Build

Design a new sign for Red Rocks Community College (Spring 2013 – Fall 2013)

Design a new greenhouse laboratory for RRCC’s Water Quality Management program (Fall 2013- Spring 2014)

Courses in IDEA

IDEA students with instructor
IDEA students with instructor Jeremy Beard work with professional engineers to design a new sign for RRCC

IDEA 1: introduction to engineering and engineering design class. Student design teams respond to a design proposal from a real world client. Students practice professional skills (teamwork, collaboration, presentation) in addition to learning design tools like Revit or Solidworks. By the end of the semester, students present a visual conceptual design to the client. EGT 275, 1.5 credits. Offered fall and spring semester.

IDEA 2: Students continue design project from IDEA 1 by refining their design with support from professional engineers, local business and industry, and/or faculty from Colorado School of Mines. Depending on scope of project, students will complete a design and build of a physical structure or advance the design to a point where it can be passed off to other groups to construct. EGT 275, 1.5 credits. Offered fall and spring semester.

Still want to stay involved? The RRCC Engineering Club works with the IDEA program to organize speakers, field trips, and tours of engineering facilities. Club members who have participated in IDEA I & II are involved in mentoring new cohorts of IDEA students. Contact Liz Cox, Director of RISE, to express interest.