Each year, engineering students at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA with a passion for solving problems collaborate to create a one-person, fuel-efficient prototype vehicle. 2020 marked the JMU Supermileage team’s third consecutive return to Shell Eco-marathon Americas and their second Safety Award.
The 2020 team comprised 10 JMU engineering students with the desire to learn more about cars, gain experience in mechanical engineering, design for an environmental and sustainable purpose, and apply their skills and coursework in a real-world setting.
The 2020 Americas Off-Tracks was not the first rodeo for all team members. Three participants from the previous year returned, sharing their learnings with seven teammates who were first timers on the team. So, it wasn’t beginner’s luck which earned them the Safety Award, but hard work, research, attention to detail and support from families, faculty advisors and JMU alumni who motivated and encouraged the students along the way.
As they think through future ambitions, the JMU Supermileage team has mile-high goals! Many hope to work in the automotive industry or in engineering in some capacity – and some wish to obtain a master’s degree in engineering.
Importantly, all team members want to continue to learn and be able to pass on knowledge to future JMU Supermileage teams down the road.