Mizzou industrial engineering seniors partner with industry to complete capstone projects 

May 21, 2024

Students studying industrial engineering work with a client to develop solutions to engineering problems. Scroll to learn more about the hands-on projects that students completed this semester.  

Quacker capstone group

Quaker Oats Popped Rice Crisps packaging waste reduction 

Chadwick Bettale, Korben Bruno, Nathan Mashburn 

Quaker Columbia is facing issues with product waste due to old sensors being used in the packaging process. PepsiCo, the parent company, intends to replace these sensors but needs more data to justify the expense because operations will need to pause to install new sensors. This capstone group found that the return on investment of new sensors would be achieved in less than two years.  

Robinson & Ries Orthodontics 

Luke Simon, Profitt Blackburn, Eli Bramblett 

Robinson & Ries faces operational challenges in receiving calls, inventory management and the treatment area of their clinic. This capstone group explored ways to reduce missed patient calls, decrease hold times and reduce variation in procedure times. They also created a new inventory management system. 

Scholastic capstone group

Streamlining packaging’s job setup processes at Scholastic 

Natalie Barber, Nick Hummert, Matthew Reynolds 

Scholastic’s packaging department produces a variety of products, ranging from shrink-wrapped books to book fair displays. This capstone group worked on improving job setup for workers in the department, with the goals of reducing the composite lifting index (CLI) to less than one, finding opportunities for buffer increases and increasing the capacity of upstream processes by 5%. 

Increasing patient throughput at the University Hospital 

Josh Burns, Jude Dierker, Shawn Hendershot 

MU Health Care has a limited availability of beds, which leads to patient flow bottlenecks. This capstone group explored how to enhance patient throughput and bed utilization by looking at either increasing the number of beds available or by optimizing the patient discharge process.  

Caterpillar capstone group

Small press area improvements at Caterpillar Boonville 

Adam Heskett, Connor Larkin, Will Norris 

Caterpillar Boonville produces parts for the manufacturing of large-scale equipment. The small press area produces over 30 different parts and had concerns about quality control and layout safety. This capstone project investigated improvements to the operational functionality of the small press area at Caterpillar Boonville. 

EDI capstone groups

Implementing automation to reduce waste and relieve ergonomic stress at Environmental Dynamics International 

Michael Davidson, Jim Vespa, Kim Le, 

Environmental Dynamics International (EDI) is constantly looking for ways to improve its operations. This capstone group analyzed their processes to identify potential inefficiencies and determined the best solution would be to implement automation at the flex plug station to relieve the workers of ergonomic stress, increase production and reduce waste. 

Learn more about industrial engineering at Mizzou!

Read about other capstone projects here.