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Renovations Help Rose-Hulman Ventures Meet Educational Opportunities

October 1, 2014

Ventures All In One Room

Effective Workspace: The new mechanical design room brings project conception, fabrication, and production in one area of Rose-Hulman Ventures. (Photo by Chris Minnick)

Rose-Hulman Ventures has undergone a transformation, with a long list of renovations improving project development areas, and allowing managers and interns to better serve clients.

The changes are apparent the minute you walk into the 35,000-square-foot building, located on Rose-Hulman’s South Campus.

Management offices have been re-located near the front entrance; a professional-style presentation room has replaced the old servery area; and there are updated common areas that showcase the success of past projects and the names of all student interns since the building’s opening in 2000.

Expanded state-of-the-art project development rooms provide better collaborative and idea-sharing workspaces, improving internship experiences for Rose-Hulman students, and bringing more value to client relationships.

“We wanted to improve our processes and add square footage to all project areas, and locate related project areas together,” explains Elizabeth Hagerman, PhD, vice president for Rose-Hulman Ventures (RHV).

The computer software development room is now divided into “islands” to accommodate one or more software teams, and the entire room is a single open space that allows for teamwork between projects. The open concept can also be found in the electrical systems development area, with some work benches, while the mechanical area has been segmented into two large rooms, one for intern workstations and mobile project work, and another housing the mechanical tooling and hardware.

“Interns enjoy more personal space and more opportunity to interact with (and learn from) their peers,” says Project Manager Nathan Weir, whose career with RHV started as an intern in 2008.    

Hagerman agreed, stating that the renovated RHV resembles the design house atmosphere that was its original concept. “Our new features enhance all of our projects, and the excitement supports what we do and how we think,” she says.

The result, according to RHV Director of Engineering Brian Dougherty, is that interns are getting projects done more efficiently, working together on equipment, and sharing ideas. This translates into more value to the client.

Rose-Hulman Ventures is a unique operational model for university/industry interaction. It offers clients access to top-caliber creative thinkers and problem solvers, and gives students real-world, hands-on learning experiences. Student interns with RHV aren’t just learning about engineering; they’re practicing it to drive real business value for clients.


Major Renovations at Rose-Hulman Ventures:

* Converted 16 small spaces into five major engineering labs to provide better access by project managers and student interns—improving efficiency.

* Added a heavy fabrication space in the mechanical engineering area.

* Relocated a prototype shop within the electrical engineering design area.

* Increased lab space for projects needing special safety, security, or other isolation requirements.

* Created an open software development lab within the development server hardware.

* Created a 90-person presentation showcase.

* Moved the management offices to a central location near the building’s entrance.

* Replaced the original dining room with a more functional break room.

* Added a loading dock so that projects can be easily uploaded for delivery.