Scott Engberg, a mechanical engineering student who graduated in December 2004, received the college’s first Active Learning Award.
Scott’s active learning experiences at CU-Boulder included research at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s National Wind Technology Center. There he focused on a wind turbine fatigue test, for which he helped develop 3D finite element analysis code to predict test parameters. He co-authored a technical conference paper, "Evaluation of the New B-REX Fatigue Testing System for Multi-Megawatt Wind Turbine Blades," which introduced a new hybrid fatigue testing system for wind turbines known as the Blade Resonance Excitation (B-REX) test system.
For the service learning requirement of the Active Learning Award, Scott served as the lead teaching assistant for the mechanical engineering CAD Fabrication class taught by Professor Larry Carlson. This opportunity resulted from his involvement with CU’s Formula SAE racing program, where he indulged in his passion for race cars and led the team to a 23rd place finish at the Formula SAE 2004 competition in Detroit. “Some people spend their senior year designing something that they can never use, [whereas] I could drive my project!” he says. “It was just downright cool — an extremely hands-on application of engineering that I feel was the greatest learning experience I had during my entire college career at CU.”
Scott also took advantage of an opportunity to work on cars while fulfilling the Active Learning Award’s professional requirement by working as an intern at Southwestern Performance Technologies in Newport Beach, California. There he used SolidWorks (three-dimensional CAD software) to update and modify composite parts for the Saleen S7, among other projects for the automotive and aerospace industries.
After graduation, Scott joined CHM Industries near Dallas, Texas. As the company’s engineering manager, he was initially placed in charge of a six-person team responsible for the engineering department’s drawings, calculations, and technical customer support. Later, he managed a team of sales personnel before being promoted to vice president of sales and engineering. Just recently, Scott was promoted to president.
Some of his notable projects at CHM Industries include several sports lighting systems. He led the design, fabrication, and field testing of the new Dallas Cowboys and Minnesota Twins sports lighting systems. He is currently leading the system design and fabrication of the new University of North Texas football field, which is to be installed in late 2010.
Scott credits his experiences on the CU Formula SAE team in preparing him for a leadership position, as he often looks back on his experiences to guide him through his daily professional life. Through the CU Formula SAE project, he was able to develop his work ethic, to learn how to lead a multidisciplinary team, and to learn how to handle the stress of fast-paced projects.
In addition to a busy career, Scott has been attending graduate school. He was midway through his master’s degree in mechanical engineering when he decided to pursue an MBA. He will be graduating in May 2011 from the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University. In pursuing his graduate studies, he has found that an engineering degree was a great foundation for his business studies, as well as his career.