Dozens of seniors gathered on Dec. 7 to demonstrate the culmination of their studies at BYU-Idaho, presenting projects in fields ranging from mathematics, web design, theater and English.

Many students will pursue graduate programs or industry positions, and these projects give them an advantage during the application process. Here are a few of the featured projects.

Swift Flat Solutions

Kaleb Cornell, Sam __, and Jordan Redd present their design to Christian Mouritsen at the Research & Creative Works Conference.

Kaleb Cornell, Samuel Andrew and Jordan Redd present their design to Christian Mouritsen at the Research & Creative Works Conference. Photo credit: Spencer Driggs

The Swift Flat Solutions engineering team met in their product design class intending to devise an improved method for bikers to repair bikes while on the road.

“Saddlebags are the most common,” said William Hatch, an avid biker and senior studying mechanical engineering. “But they’re bulky, and it can be a mess getting stuff out of them (for repairs).”

Their lightweight and streamlined design fits on the back of the seat providing all the tools a biker needs to change a tire.

The lightweight new bike repair design. It fits on the back of a seat and keeps the bike aerodynamic.

The lightweight new bike repair design. It fits on the back of a seat and keeps the bike aerodynamic. Photo credit: Spencer Driggs

“It’s a lot more aerodynamic this way,” Hatch said.

Gazing at galaxies

Kavin Siaw pointing at the fluctuating brightness he found on a distant galaxy.

Kavin Siaw pointing at the fluctuating brightness he found on a distant galaxy. Photo credit: Spencer Driggs

Kavin Siaw, a senior studying physics, spent his internship studying a galaxy over 300 million light years away: Markarian 501. His department has tracked the light emitted from this galaxy, and Slaw worked to find cycles in the light it emitted.

Siaw found that Markarian 501 reaches full brightness approximately every 4.5 years. The speed of that rotation helps scientists better understand what lies at the center of that galaxy.

“My favorite part was the moment I found that period in the results,” Siaw said. “It was cool to see my hypothesis pay off.”

Keyboard communication

Becca Stucki shows off her new website.

Becca Stucki shows off her new website. Photo credit: Spencer Driggs

When Becca Stucki, a senior studying web design, saw her mom struggling to keep track of her piano students, she built a website that keeps track of student calendars, explains pedagogy and includes ear training games.

“I really wanted to make something special for her, (which) made working on it more meaningful and fun,” Stucki said. “Getting to show her the final product was a great experience because she was so happy and thankful for it.”

Stucki designed everything from scratch, including typefaces and the color scheme of light blues and purples. See her full website here.

The website Becca Stucki designed for her mom's piano studio.

The website Becca Stucki designed for her mom's piano studio. Photo credit: Spencer Driggs

Aerobic experiments

Not all students in the Department of Human Performance and Recreation are fitness enthusiasts.

“When I first took the Wingate Test, I was absolutely wiped,” said Samuel Ratigan, a graduating senior who worked on the project.

The Wingate Test is a short 30-second biking sprint that measures heart activity and muscle endurance. For their semester project, the team looked for a way to predict these scores.

Luke Hamilton, Jennifer Holmes, Samuel Ratigan and Sean Erickson present their findings on anaerobic strength.

Luke Hamilton, Jennifer Holmes, Samuel Ratigan and Sean Erickson present their findings on anaerobic strength. Photo credit: Spencer Driggs

They had 27 male and 16 female students take the InBody test to collect their skeletal muscle mass and body fat scores. Then, the students took the Wingate Test, and the team predicted the scores.

“This can be useful for injury recovery,” said Luke Hamilton, who helped design the experiment. “This will let us predict someone’s full strength ability and then see how close they are to that point.”

Suitcase supplements

Nathan Thompson, Braxton Patterson, Alex McRae and Mark Delaney present their work.

Nathan Thompson, Braxton Patterson, Alex McRae and Mark Delaney present their work. Photo credit: Spencer Driggs

Some luxury suitcases have motorized wheels, allowing them to move without a traveler needing to push them. However, not everyone wants to buy a brand-new suitcase.

“Our sponsor wanted something that was removable,” said Braxton Patterson, a senior studying engineering.

The remote that attaches to a suitcase handle, allowing it to work on a variety of luggage types.

The remote that attaches to a suitcase handle, allowing it to work on a variety of luggage types. Photo credit: Spencer Driggs

His team’s final product has a motor that connects to one of the front wheels and a small remote that sits on top of the handle. Both motors are fully detachable, allowing people to add them to any suitcase.

The team tested safety requirements, overall usability and speed control during their testing process.