On January 15, UT’s EcoCAR3 Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition (AVTC) team held a “Starting Line Ceremony” to unveil the General Motors donated 2016 Chevrolet Camaro which will be redesigned and rebuilt as a hybrid vehicle.
EcoCAR3 Communications Manager Emily King, a first year communication and information (C&I) Master’s student concentrating on public relations, was in charge of organizing the event and served as its MC.
Sponsored by General Motors and the US Department of Energy and managed by Argonne National Laboratory, EcoCAR3 is a four-year national engineering competition that challenges 16 university teams to design and rebuild a 2016 Chevrolet Camaro as a hybrid. UT’s team consists of students from three colleges, the College of Engineering, the College of Communication and Information and the Haslam College of Business Administration.
The CCI part of the team includes King, PR junior Jenna Winn and ADPR Associate Professor Lisa Fall who serves as faculty advisor for the communications team.
A blog post about King’s experiences so far as communications manager for the team is provided below.
“As the communications manager, I aim to spread the word about EcoCAR3 to the UT community, engage our target consumer market in Knoxville through conversations about the importance of sustainable transportation and the research and support that UT is offering in that area, and make sure that our many sponsors and supporters remain engaged with our team.
The most exciting communications project we’ve had so far was that we invited our local sponsors and supporters to our “Starting Line Ceremony” to take a look at our newly-designed Camaro. General Motors donates a brand new Camaro to each team, and we received ours in December. Soon our engineers will take the Camaro apart and then begin the process of putting it back together as a hybrid. Before we take the car apart, we wanted to thank all of the people and companies who are making this project a reality for our team. At the Starting Line Ceremony, we had approximately 50 guests as well as most of our student team present; we also had two local television stations and the Knoxville News Sentinel join us to cover the event. Each of our participating college deans spoke about the program, I spoke from the students’ perspective, and one of our UT alums, GM EcoCAR3 Project Manager Anthony Howard, who participated in a similar project when he was a student at UT, also spoke during the ceremony.
The Starting Line Ceremony was really cool for me for a couple of different reasons. First, I love that this event allowed supporters of EcoCAR3 to come together to see what they are accomplishing together. Second, it has been so wonderful to work with and get to know College of Engineering (COE) Development staff, who helped me organize the event, and the COE media coordinator, who has helped me connect with local and regional media. And lastly, throughout all of my experiences with EcoCAR3, I have been able to get an inside look at what it is like to do communications in a STEM-related field. It’s different than any other communications experience I have had, and this opportunity that UT is offering is allowing me to learn more about my strengths, weaknesses and interests, and ultimately it is allowing me to really grow through my education.”
Follow Team Tennessee on Facebook < https://www.facebook.com/UTEcoCAR3/>, Twitter < http://www.twitter.com/@EcoCARUTK> and Instagram < https://www.instagram.com/ut_ecocar3/> and visit our website < http://ecocar3.org/tennessee/about-us/> to learn more about our team.”