University of Calgary

Solar Team shines during presentation

UToday HomeJuly 3, 2012

The Solar Team put together a hands-on lunch and learn presentation for their sponsors on June 21. The Solar Team put together a hands-on lunch and learn presentation for their sponsors on June 21. Educate. Innovate. Captivate–that is the mission of the University of Calgary Solar Team, an inter-disciplinary program comprised of undergraduate students.

On June 21, that is exactly what they did during a Lunch and Learn presentation to sponsors, intended to offer insight into what their support means to their work.

The Schulich Axiom project (the team’s third generation solar powered vehicle) is heavily supported by the University of Calgary’s Haskayne School of Business and Schulich School of Engineering. However, the team is also financially sponsored by many members of Calgary’s corporate oil and gas firms–including BP Oil Canada.

There can often be a disconnect between employees and the various projects their company is supporting, so the Solar Team began offering Lunch and Learn presentations to the sponsors of their projects in an effort to bridge this gap. Team members facilitated conversation with staff members regarding the details of the car, and their level of involvement with the project.

Jordyn Troyer, project co-chair (business), felt this event was a successful representation of the team’s link to the oil and gas industry and the amount of support and interest a project like this can garner.

“The BP Lunch and Learn was a really great opportunity for us to reach and strengthen our connections with the corporate community. What was so unique about this presentation was the amount of interactivity–staff members were able to touch and feel the car, and we had members from both our engineering and business teams to answer any questions they might have,” says Troyer. “It was exciting to see how interested the employees were in the project and the car itself; many of whom didn’t realize we were an entirely student-run organization or that we designed and built Axiom from start to finish.”

“This event was very different from the presentations we normally run, and I think hosting question and answer period outside with the car really helped to facilitate conversation with company employees,” says Lindsey Allan, the team’s communications coordinator. “It was fun to watch the employees taking photos with the vehicle and recognizing that, like them, we are continually innovating and improving.”

The Solar Team is in the design stages for its fourth generation solar car, set to be unveiled in January 2013.