What is UTDesign?
UTDesign is a program that provides our senior engineering and computer science students with a meaningful experience on their capstone project by partnering with industry to bring solutions to real engineering problems. UTDesign projects are proposed and mentored by companies. Students not only get to work on a real company project, but also experience working in a similar environment as their industry mentor(s).
Check out the website for more information, www.utdallas.edu/utdesign.
I’ve never done anything like this before, what is my first step?
Brainstorm some ideas for projects with people from your company. Schedule a meeting with the UTDesign department director to discuss top ideas. Determine if the project will be successful for the students and your company.
What should I expect after I submit a proposal?
A UTDesign director will contact you to discuss your project. Once all details of the project are worked out, you can secure the project by making a commitment and/or down payment before classes start. Your team will be assigned three to four weeks into the semester.
How do I “properly scope” a project?
Projects usually average four students; each student is expected to put in 10 hours per week. This implies a 40-hour total effort. Consider what one full-time student that just completed their junior year could accomplish in one semester (two semesters if an engineering project). Develop project goals based on this skill level and amount of effort.
How do I make sure the students have the skills I think they need?
Complete the online project proposal form, listing the skills you think are needed. Work with the department director to determine if these are obtainable and how.
How do I improve the likelihood of having a successful result at the end of the project?
Dedicate an experienced employee (corporate mentor) with the appropriate technical background for the project to meet regularly with the student team, have a realistic expectation of what can be accomplished for the duration of the project, manage the students to success, and communicate any potential barriers with the team, faculty advisor and department directors as soon as they are identified.
Who owns the IP?
Corporate partners are encouraged to enter into mutually acceptable agreements with the UTDesign students and their teams. This allows them to secure rights to the IP developed during the course of the project. These agreements are to be made between the company and the students.
What about NDAs?
The faculty signs a nondisclosure agreement representing them and UT Dallas. UT Dallas provides the NDA and the corporate sponsor is encouraged to review and propose any necessary changes, which must be approved by UT Dallas before all parties sign. Work directly with the students to get their NDA.
What is a typical project schedule?
For a suggested schedule, please visit the following link: http://www.utdallas.edu/utdesign/corporate/forms/project-schedule/