engineering

  1. Sitting Down With Synectic’s 2017 Summer Intern

    When people think of summer they think of hot days by the pool sipping cold drinks or a fun day with friends and family at the beach, but here at Synectic, summer signifies a new intern. Synectic’s highly sought after paid internship program is an excellent opportunity for young engineers to get valuable hands-on experience that will help them throughout their careers. After careful review of the many applicants, we chose Heather Stratica to intern with us this summer. Originally from New York, Heather is a Biomedical Engineering major, with a concentration in Biomedical Instrumentation, at Worchester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts. I had a chance to speak with Heather about why she chose to intern at Synectic and what her internship experience was like.

     

    Thank you for taking the time to speak with me today. I know all the projects here have kept you very busy the last few weeks. Starting off, let’s talk a little about your background. What made you pursue a career in engineering?

    HS: From a young age I noticed that I was naturally good at math and science and I really enjoyed those topics in school. Because of this, as I grew older, I began to take part in STEM and particularly women focused STEM programs to get a better understanding of what my options where in those fields. It didn’t take long before I realized I wanted to become an engineer and not just to design new things, but to have the general mindset of an engineer and have the ‘problem solver’ mentality. This mentality is something that has been useful in every aspect in my life and I’m glad to have chosen a path that has impacted me so positively.

    Heather, you’re originally from New York and go to school in Massachusetts, out of all the places you could have interned with, why did you choose Synectic?

    HS: My concentration is in biomedical instrumentation and Synectic’s main focus for years has been medical devices. This is exactly what I want to work with after college so I reached out and learned about the internship program. I thought it would be a great way to learn about what medical device engineers do at a company like Synectic.

    We are so happy you were able to spend your summer working at Synectic. As you are preparing to go back to your final year in school, how has your time here advanced your knowledge? 

    HS: Most of my engineering education has come from a classroom setting, with some projects thrown in as we assess mechanical and biomedical designs. My time at Synectic allowed me to utilize what I learned in school, in a ‘real world’ setting. Since it’s a rather small company, I learned a lot about how a medical device company actually functions and not just from the engineer’s perspective. I also participated in pilot production of a major product allowing me to participate in the entire process from concept to production. To me, all of this is valuable knowledge that can’t be taught in a classroom, and I am glad Synectic gave me the opportunity to gain this experience.

    Heather, given your experience while working with us, would you consider coming back to work at Synectic full time?

    HS: Yes, I would love to come back to Synectic! It’s a great atmosphere to work in and the projects are plentiful and intriguing. You are required to think outside-the-box and challenge yourself daily. One of the best parts about working at Synectic is that you get to see the entire concept to production process. It’s great to see all your hard work pay off when the product goes to market.

    We would love to have you back at Synectic as well. One last question that I’m sure everyone reading this wants to know. Tell me something about yourself and what you like to do outside work and school?

    HS: I am a first generation American scholar, as both of my parents emigrated from Romania and worked very hard to get where they are today, instilling in me a very strong work ethic. I’m from Wappingers Falls, NY and came from a very small high school where I had about 30 people in my graduating class. I swam competitively for about 8 years and just retired that this spring, however, I teach swim lessons to share my passion with others.

     

  2. Spotlight on STEM: Synectic at Polson Middle School

     

    What happens when you take a class of eighth graders, office supplies, and Synectic Engineering? You get the best STEM career day ever!

     

    Mac McMurray getting ready to speak with the students at Polson Middle School about product design

     

    Synectic’s Mac McMurray and Kathleen Murray visited Polson Middle School in Madison, CT for their Math and Science Career Day. They met with three classes of eighth graders to discuss product design engineering and put those concepts to the test. The students were given a scenario and some office supplies with the task of constructing a paper airplane.

    FDM printed 3D plane given to the winner

    Once complete, they were able to test and re-engineer their design, before competing against their classmates to see who could fly their plane the farthest. The winner of each class received a 3D printed stealth fighter from Synectic’s own FDM machine. Synectic wants to thank Polson Middle School for inviting us to talk about a rewarding career in STEM. We had an amazing time.

     

    Do you have a child who may be interested in an engineering career? Try out our airplane scenario at home and see where it may take them.

    • You will need:
      • Construction paper
      • Paper clips
      • Pencils
      • Tape
      • Scissors
      • Any other office supplies you want to add
    • Scenario: You need to get a message across a river using a paper airplane
    • Suggestions: Set a distance goal for the airplane that will be the river in this scenario. Have your child design what they feel is the ideal paper airplane using any of the above materials. Once they are done designing, they can test it out to see how far it can fly. Does the plane make it across the river? If not, discuss with them how they can make it fly farther. Talk to them about some physical and environmental challenges, such as wind and weight, which may prevent it from flying further. Have them re-engineer their airplane using the same piece of paper, and then retest. For an added challenge you can pretend that you are the client and give your child specifications for how you want the plane built, such as only using one piece of paper, two paperclips, and three pieces of tape. Does their plane fly better using the challenge items? Why or why not? Most importantly, HAVE FUN!

    Mac’s son Ryder with his paper airplane design


    For more STEM projects you can do at home click here

    To see what products the engineers at Synectic have designed and developed click here

  3. Just Arrived: Synectic’s Newest Product Design Engineer

    Synectic is growing and growing!  We welcomed Jeff Saller as a new Senior Product Design Engineer at the beginning of this year.  Jeff has a rich background involving multiple facets of engineering, including product design and development, bringing a lot to our organization.  A native of Milford for over 20 years, Jeff is excited to join a great team so close to home.  I was able to speak with Jeff for a few minutes about his background and here is what I found out:

    Jeff, thank you so much for taking the time to speak with me.  I know Synectic keeps you busy with all the new and interesting projects we have.  Can you tell me a little more about your background and what interested you in Mechanical and Product Design Engineering?

    • JS: My father was a chemical engineer and had a lot of influence on me.  My real interest started when I was 12 working on bikes and small engines.  I became a mechanical engineer and my first job out of college was at a small startup in Stamford.  When the company was sold, I transferred to Wisconsin and worked as manufacturing engineering on scientific instrumentation products for five years.  After that I came back to Connecticut and worked in manufacturing, product design, aerospace, and engineering management.  I gained a lot of experience and skills that have allowed me to grow as an engineer.

    Wow! You really have a varied background and must have worked on a variety of products over the years. Out of all the medical device development companies out there, what attracted you to Synectic?

    • JS:  I have worked for various start-ups in the past and I like the small team feel and fast pace.  Synectic offers this, but has experience and proven results that allow a constant stream of new projects and challenges.  In the short time I have been here, I have never been bored.  While I am learning new skills every day, I am also able to use my past experience working in manufacturing and production engineering to meet the needs of our customers.

    Jeff, since we can’t talk about what projects you are currently working on, what has been your favorite project you worked during your career?

    • JS:  I was part of a team that created a handheld spectrometer.  It had interchangeable heads to allow for a variety of sampling applications.  One of these was for detecting thermal damage to sections of an airplane, that had been struck by lightning, in order to identify areas needing repair.

    That is really cool!  You will definitely work on equally awesome projects at Synectic.  Now, enough about work.  What do you like to do when you aren’t designing medical products?

    • JS:  I’m an avid golfer and cyclist. I also like to play guitar. I’m married with two grown children and like to spend my spare time with my family and friends.

     

    To learn more about Synectic’s other Product Design Engineers click here

    Click here if you want to see medical products we have designed

  4. Meet Amanda, Synectic’s Newest Team Member

    Synectic is excited to introduce our newest Associate Design Engineer, Amanda Konieczny. Amanda holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and is currently working on her Masters in Engineering Operations Management at University of New Haven. Originally a native of West Springfield Massachusetts, Amanda is excited to begin her career as part of the Synectic team. I had the opportunity to speak with Amanda to learn a little more about her.

    Amanda, women working in engineering is slowly becoming more common, but you still don’t see them every day. What interested you in pursuing a career in mechanical engineering?

    AK: No one in my family is an engineer. When I expressed an interest, I was discouraged by my peers and mentors and basically told that I ‘couldn’t do it’ which in turn motivated me to succeed and to prove them wrong. It wasn’t easy, and I learned mostly by doing. I originally wanted to work in aerospace, but sophomore year of college, I switched to mechanical engineering because I wanted a broader experience. I worked at Synectic as a contractor and really enjoyed working in medical devices. A lot of the stuff Synectic works on is very interesting and challenging.

    How have you overcome some of the challenges facing you as a woman in a male dominated field?

    AK: During my junior year of college I spent 8 weeks in Himachal Pradesh India as part of my Interactive Qualifying Project. Our project was improving agricultural practices in farm lands in Mandi by technological intervention. My biggest take away was how different cultures interact, mainly in terms of male to male and female to female communication. Most times, traditional Indian males will not even shake a female’s hand. From that experience, I learned that in order to be successful as a female engineering you have to exude confidence and poise as well as speak with conviction. If you act shy, then your male coworkers will steamroll you.

    Amanda, out of all the companies you could have chosen to work for, what interested you the most about Synectic?

    AK: The projects at Synectic move at a quick pace and you always have a variety of things to work on. During my time here as a contractor, I learned so much more then I could have ever learned in school. You are constantly getting challenged from both your boss and the clients, so I am never bored and I have a lot of autonomy in my work. Best of all, the people at Synectic form a close knit team creating a great work environment.

    We are so glad that you chose to work at Synectic! Tell us a little bit more about yourself. What are your interests and hobbies?

    AK: I’m an avid swimmer. On the weekends I teach swimming to special needs children and adults. I also love to go to the gym. When I’m not swimming or at the gym, I like to spend time with my three dogs Sophie, Lexi, and Maggie.

  5. Synectic continues to Grow and Improve!

    SYNECTIC® ENGINEERING ADDS NEW CAPABILITY WITH PURCHASE OF STRATASYS DIMENSIONS ELITE “FDM” PRINTER

    Synectic® Engineering is a product design and development company, servicing client engineering needs for 35 years. In this fast paced market for design and engineering services, Synectic® is keeping up to speed with our clients’ needs. As we continue to grow our services, Synectic® has always looked at ways of improving our capabilities by reducing cost and lead times. One of the new tools in our portfolio to improve in-house industrial design and human factors modeling is a new FDM printer.

    WHY A 3D PRINTER?

    The purchase of the Dimension’s Elite FDM printer enables us to have a more iterative design process, putting human factor models in customers’ hands earlier in the process than ever before. Within a matter of days, we now have the ability to design a part, print a prototype, review the part’s design, make changes and print another prototype to validate the changes made. In the past, this process would have taken one to two weeks to complete using off-site suppliers. Using this rapid–prototyping technology on-site, Synectic® can now verify ergonomics and aesthetics, as well as functionality, early on. This will allow our clients to experiment with their design concepts and test their engineering limits, saving time and money while improving on overall look and functionality.

     

    If you have any questions about FDM process or you have a project that needs quoting, please forward request to: info@synectic.net  We look forward to discussing your next project with you!