COVID-19 Pandemic Has Changed Engineering for Good

IMechE | June 30, 2020

The engineering response to the sudden demands of the coronavirus was inspiring. Whether building ventilators, making personal protective equipment or creating new hospital capacity, companies and institutions from across the spectrum came together in a spirit of collaboration.

Even firms traditionally seen as rivals came together, demonstrating what can be achieved when looking beyond profit margins.

Collaboration forged new connections that will carry over into the post-pandemic world, said IMechE member and Oxford professor Mark Thompson, who led the Oxvent ventilator project. “The crisis has provided the ideal conditions within which an engineering perspective can flourish, because it provides wider adoption of the supportive and collaborative principles which engineers work by,” he said. “I think everyone will carry forward with them the experience of how they responded. In that sense it will irrevocably change the way that the networks are put together.”

Spotlight

Each summer, four college students spend the summer on Appledore Island as sustainable engineering interns for the UNH/Cornell University Shoals Marine Laboratory. It’s the ultimate win-win: The students get real-world experience in sustainable power, water and sanitation engineering, and Shoals Marine Lab enhances the sustainability of its remote island environment.

Spotlight

Each summer, four college students spend the summer on Appledore Island as sustainable engineering interns for the UNH/Cornell University Shoals Marine Laboratory. It’s the ultimate win-win: The students get real-world experience in sustainable power, water and sanitation engineering, and Shoals Marine Lab enhances the sustainability of its remote island environment.

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