QUEST Students Lead Team to Alumni Cup Victory

Congratulations to QUEST students Shannon Donaldson (Q29) and Hadas Elazar-Mittelman (Q30) on their team’s Alumni Cup victory! They led a team of eight Materials Science and Engineering majors in the design and assembly of a Rube Goldberg machine. 

Hadas (front left) and Shannon (front right) with their teammates

The Alumni Cup is an annual engineering design competition hosted by the A. James Clark School of Engineering and its Alumni Association. Students from each Engineering department create a machine that will exercise a fundamental task. In this year’s competition, students were required to build a Rube Goldberg machine with 20 steps leading up to a small basketball being dunked into a hoop. 

Teams had one week to design their machines, which also needed to showcase the disciplines of their respective engineering department. The machines were presented and judged at the competition on Friday, February 21 to conclude Engineers Week. 

Hadas (left) and Shannon (right) explaining their design

Shannon and Hadas led six other Materials Science and Engineering students in the week-long design, with about 20 people helping build the machine. Overall, Hadas and Shannon estimate the team spent at least 54 hours working on the machine! “While we were all in the same engineering major, everyone brought something unique to the table, and it was a humbling experience piecing everyone together into a functional team,” Hadas said.

Hadas thinks that her and Shannon’s experiences with QUEST helped them lead their team successfully. “QUEST teaches you valuable leadership and people skills both within the context of teams and personally,” Hadas said. “QUEST emphasizes that a team is only as strong as the sum of its parts, and to function as a good Alumni Cup team everyone needs to participate. It’s clear early on that every person is a valuable asset, and this concept is rampant in all QUEST curriculum.”

The names of the winning team members will be written on the Alumni Cup Trophy, kept in Glenn L. Martin Hall. Congratulations to Shannon and Hadas for their leadership and hard work!

Hadas, Shannon, and their teammates with the Alumni Cup!

Christina Giovanazi (Cohort 31) is a junior studying Finance and Operations Management & Business Analytics.

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