Mubea, an international partner to the automotive industry and an innovative lightweight specialist for high-strength spring components and related products, is a long-time partner with the University of Cincinnati. “We work with co-op students across several departments, including engineering, finance, human resources, and IT,” said Chad Steffen, Continuous Improvement, Engineering Manager at Mubea. “Next fall, we hope to deepen our relationship with UC by working with students through capstone projects to develop solutions to complex engineering problems.”
Steffen, who frequently works with one or two UC co-op students each semester, tries to give them work that’s a little more complex throughout their three to four months at Mubea, but often, the day-to-day work makes it challenging. Through capstone projects, Steffen can work with a UC senior student on an in-depth project that utilizes the student’s cumulative academic and professional experience.
One example of a possible project would be helping Mubea find a way to automate its labelling process. “Right now, a label prints and somebody is physically taking that label off the printer and putting it on the part,” said Steffen. “The process doesn’t add much value and creates an opportunity for human error. A student project could be to create a cost-effective solution that would automate this.”
“We’re also beginning to make more parts for electric vehicles,” added Steffen. “To support the weight of the battery in EVs, we’re moving more into the big wire market and we need to make our tooling more robust as well. This is certainly something that we would like to partner with UC on.”
Steffen works solely with engineering co-ops and tries to provide a real-world experience. “I try to get them out on the floor as much as possible and interacting with the people, because that’s a big portion of what the manufacturing world is,” said Steffen. “Getting to know the team members and what things they’re struggling with, then coming up with solutions to help.”
If your organization is interested in partnering with UC on future capstone projects, email UC’s Partnership Development team.
Mubea is a family run global organization with 48 locations in 20 countries across Europe, the Americas and Asia. Its North American headquarters are in Florence, Kentucky across the river from the University of Cincinnati. Its campus includes six different manufacturing facilities each producing a different automotive component, plus an internal tool shop. The Mubea Engineering Center in located in Auburn Hills, Michigan.