Ryan Hall

Ryan Hall

Major: Mechanical Engineering                      Minor: None

Extracurricular Activities:
Valparaiso University Robotics Team, Valparaiso University Chapter of A.S.M.E., Tau Beta Pi – Indiana Delta Chapter, and Hesse Scholar/Tutor

Honors and Awards:
I have achieved Dean’s List every semester at Valparaiso University, was awarded the AGMA foundation scholarship my senior year, and was inducted into Alpha Lambda Delta (the freshman honors society) and Tau Beta Pi (the engineering honors society).

I spent the summer following my sophomore year at Caterpillar, Inc. in Aurora, Illinois. I worked in the advanced manufacturing group completing time studies for the assembly of the newest model medium wheel loader, supporting the pilot build of the newest medium wheel loader, and virtually verifying design changes to a larger series medium wheel loader to ensure the ability to be assembled. I spent the summer following my junior year at Valparaiso University conducting undergraduate research with Professor Venstrom. I worked with modelling the chemical kinetics of the high temperature reduction of iron and cobalt oxide and assisted in conducting concentrated solar experiments in the Solar Energy Research Facility (SERF).

Research Interest:
My research focused on renewable energy, specifically projects involving the new Solar Energy Research Facility (SERF). I spent three semesters and a summer working on projects connecting cooling hoses to reactors for experimentation, modelling high temperature solar reactors, analyzing experimental results to determine reduction and oxidation kinetics for metal oxides, and creating figures for publications and progress reports for research faculty members are currently conducting.

Favorite Quote:
“I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work the more I have of it.” – Thomas Jefferson

Prospective plan for after graduation:
Following graduation, I will be returning to Caterpillar, Inc. in Aurora, Illinois to be a design engineer for medium wheel loaders. I will be working on the same machine that I worked with conducting the time studies and supporting the pilot build, so I am very excited. Primarily, my job will be to make design changes on the existing machine to ensure the continued performance of the machines in the field. This assignment will allow my problem solving and technical abilities to be continually challenged; so I am very excited for the opportunity.



My favorite memory at Valparaiso University will be the day I spent at the end of my summer conducting research at Valpo when I sat and discussed future possibilities with Professor Duncan and Professor Venstrom. We discussed my options of attending graduate school or pursuing a career in an industrial role. I could have never imagined a place where the Professors take their time to help guide and coach the students, while taking a personal interest in each student at the same time. These conversations were only two of many that I have had with the faculty members at Valpo, and the relationships I have formed with my Professors is going to be one of the things I miss most when I leave. The support system at Valparaiso University (at least in the Mechanical Engineering Department) is one that will allow each and every student to achieve whatever he sets his mind to. I would not have been as successful in my college career if my professors did not have open door policies and the patience to help me through a difficult problem.