Campus: CSU Fresno -- February 06, 2002

Problem-Solving Students From CSU Fresno Help Local Businesses

Got a problem?

Students at California State University, Fresno may have a solution.

The Solutions Center at Fresno State is designed to expose students to real-life problem-solving by working on a project selected by a local business or a government agency.

For example, a team of Fresno State industrial technology students coached by faculty adviser Tony Au worked on a project funded by Haeger Inc. of Oakdale to design and produce a prototype insertion machine. The prototype was modified for mass production by Haeger and the new machine was displayed in November at the Fabtech manufacturing trade show in Chicago.

In a letter to the Solutions Center, Rob McIntosh, president of Haeger, stated: "The Solutions Center was a key part of the development of Haeger's new [product] …"
Solutions Center Director Michael W. Thomas indicates several benefits to the students and the community.

"Students work cooperatively with faculty and the business and get valuable hands-on experience that prepares them for the working world," he said. "They put into practice the theories they have studied in the classroom and deal with the dynamics of teamwork, budget and schedule restraints."

Thomas feels that business benefits by finding solutions to a problem, plus having the opportunity to evaluate top students for potential employment. In addition, he said, contact with the university can provide access to knowledge and new technology, as well as fresh, creative ideas.

Three to five students who are seniors or graduate students with at least a 2.5 GPA and work with a faculty member. The students receive academic credit for their work and in some cases fulfill requirements for a senior project or an internship. Projects vary from semester to semester.

For more information, call (559) 278-5687 or

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