Engineering Senior Design

Imagine designing a product that proves useful to a major corporation. As a George Fox engineering student, you’ll get that very privilege as part of the department’s capstone Senior Design course, taken in the fall and spring of your senior year.

Truly a Capstone Course

Truly a capstone course, Senior Design demands integration of knowledge from all areas of the curriculum, and projects require that students not only produce a design but a working prototype as well.

The project criteria include considerations such as economic, environmental, sustainability, manufacturability, ethical, health and safety, social, and political. Students are often surprised at all the “non-technical” issues that must be confronted and addressed.

Recent Projects

The senior design teams complete extensive projects while working closely with their industry sponsors. Their hard work is celebrated each year at the senior banquet, held at the Evergreen Aviation Museum. They make presentations to the engineering departments and sponsoring companies, as well as demonstrate their prototypes at the annual Engineering Expo.

Below are links to recent projects:

Industry Design Experience

Engineering student working on a project

Senior Design I & II is a two-semester, four-credit-hour course with the following key features:

  • All the senior engineering students from the different concentrations are enrolled, forming interdisciplinary teams that operate like small companies.
  • The course is co-taught by engineering faculty from different disciplines.
  • Students work directly with the sponsoring company to identify design specifications and perform the investigation, to ensure a realistic industry design project.
  • Significant freedom is given to the student teams, while the engineering faculty and industry engineers are available for guidance.
  • Students give regular progress reports to the sponsoring company, the faculty, and each other.
  • Both the teams and individual students are assessed throughout the two semesters.
  • Prototypes are developed and fabricated by the students.
  • Final oral presentations and prototype demonstrations are given on campus and at the client’s industrial site.


The university launched this unique design experience with the Xerox Corporation of Wilsonville, Oregon, in 2003-04, to create products that have real-world application for the company. George Fox's partnership with Xerox began with a drop-on-drum vision system that resulted in a more efficient, effective way of capturing images of ink droplets on its printer drums.

In 2005, students created an automated ink durability tester for Xerox that provided a simple and consistent method of testing and improving ink durability or scratch resistance. Then, in 2006, students built a fixture that allows Xerox to test the effects that load, velocity and temperature have on its various transfix roller and drum materials.

The engineering department has since expanded these partnerships to include other regional, national and international companies.

Engineering students preparing for their presentation

Senior Seminar

Senior engineering students are also enrolled in the Senior Seminar course, designed to present diverse topics, including subject matter that assists them with successfully completing their design projects. Some of the relevant seminar topics are project management, leadership and entrepreneuring, personal organization, professional etiquette, presentation skills, and persuasive reasoning.

The Senior Design course serves as an excellent place to measure the overall learning and progress of our students as well as the success of the George Fox engineering program.

Sponsoring Companies

The year-long project culminates in a working prototype built to spec for an industrial client. Projects have been performed with the following:

  • A-dec, Newberg, Oregon
  • Astronics Corp., Kirkland, Washington
  • Blount International, Portland, Oregon
  • Cascade Steel Rolling Mills, McMinnville, Oregon
  • Centrex Construction, Tigard, Oregon
  • Climax Portable Machining & Welding Systems, Newberg, Oregon
  • CUI, Tualatin, Oregon
  • Daimler Trucks North America, Portland, Oregon
  • Engineering Ministries International, Colorado Springs, Colorado
  • Garmin, Salem, Oregon
  • Intel Corp., Hillsboro, Oregon
  • Legacy Oregon Burn Center, Portland, Oregon
  • Mercedes Benz Technology, Troy, Michigan
  • Oregon Dept. of Fish & Wildlife, Salem, Oregon
  • PPM Technologies, Newberg, Oregon
  • Siemens, Lake Oswego, Oregon
  • Tektronix, Beaverton, Oregon
  • TZ Medical, Portland, Oregon
  • VAC Group, Sydney, Australia
  • Vibe Tech, Sheboygan, Wisconsin
  • Yamhill County Dept. of Public Works, McMinnville, Oregon
  • Xerox Corp., Wilsonville, Oregon
Grace Cupp

Grace Cupp

2021 Biomedical Engineering Graduate

My love of research and the study of the human body ultimately culminated in my Senior Design project. My team created a fully functioning vascular flow system similar to that in the human body. The system included an anatomically accurate rigid heart model and was really fun to create. My professors challenged me far beyond my comfort zone and provided me with the opportunity to discover my interests and strengths.