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ME Design Project Opportunities for Industry

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Stanford’s ME Design Group gives companies an exclusive opportunity to connect with a worldwide community of researchers and innovators from industry and academia and offers engagement in Silicon Valley’s unique mind‐ and skill‐set. Workshops, social gatherings and technical briefings create opportunities to learn, network, exchange ideas, and pick up the buzz on what’s hot on- and off-campus. Your financial support connects you with one of the world’s most highly‐regarded engineering design education and research programs. Several options offer a wide range of possibilities.

Project Courses

Industry Affiliates can become active participants in our classes. Most often, this is done by proposing a joint project to be undertaken by a team of 3‐4 students working under faculty supervision, with a company liaison, and mentored by design coaches. Faculty work with the company to identify customer and client needs and define the right balance of technical challenge, discovery opportunity, and educational value. These engagements typically last 10 to 30 weeks (1 to 3 quarters) and focus either on engineering design or product design.

Project Courses in Engineering Design

ENGR110/210 Perspectives in Assistive Technology
(undergraduate and graduate students)
January through March

ME170AB Mechanical Engineering Design: Integrating Context with Engineering
(undergraduate seniors)
September through March

ME218D Smart Product Design: Projects
(graduate students)
September through December

ME310A/BC Global Engineering Design Thinking, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship
(graduate students, master’s thesis equivalent)
September through June

Project Courses in Life Design Lab

ENGR311B Designing the Professional
January through March, April through June

ENGR104B Designing Your Life
September through December, January through March, April through June

ENGR104S Designing Your Stanford
September through December, January through March, April through June

New class pilots, such as
ENGR180 Designing Black Experiences
April through June

Research Collaborations

Industry affiliates are invited to participate in the research laboratories at Stanford's Center for Design Research (CDR). Interaction with the labs is typically either through industry researchers who take a sabbatical on campus and work alongside Stanford researchers, or through lab visits arranged to inform corporate personnel regarding ongoing research and design practices. The Affiliate Membership fee helps support student research assistants who work under the supervision of faculty mentors on projects of academic and industry interest.

Collaboration Benefits

By supporting design education and research, affiliate companies create opportunities to develop their own personnel, learn from other companies and projects, and to interact directly with potential recruits and select Stanford faculty labs.

Our corporate affiliates benefit from attending the annual Stanford Design EXPErience (EXPE), a festival of student creativity and productivity held in early June. EXPE features project outcomes from ME310 and other project‐based courses. This meeting is the perfect time to gather information on past design experiences, create new ideas and make concrete plans for the coming academic year. EXPE emphasizes the value of constant involvement between all of us through workshops, student activities, research and personal contact.


For administrative information, to get involved, and to be informed about upcoming events, please contact:

Kristin Burns
Manager, Industry Affiliate Program for Teaching Design Thinking

For a deeper dive into the formulation of a course project proposal or line of research, you are welcome to contact individual faculty. Kristin may be your best point of entry to the community.


Affiliation Opportunities at Stanford’s Center for Design Research (CDR)


8/8/2023 kburns