Graduation Gift to Myself: Final Project Ideas

I’ve been struggling a lot to try and come up with an idea for what to do for this project. This irks me because I’m constantly looking around my house and on the internet seeing cool things other individuals have done and thinking, “Oh I’d like to try to build something like that” but of course when the time comes where I have free reign to do whatever I want, which is also encouraged by a class, I can’t think of anything.

I do have some preemptive ideas that I would like to encorporate to some capacity.

Arudino: The possibilities with Arduino is pretty endless, and it allows for some layers of electronics that would be a lot harder for me to encorporate without the micro controller. I think with an arduino I can both make the end product look better with lights and motors, but also give some level of interactability.

Aviation Related: Once I graduate, I’m going to flight school for the Navy. Aviation is a huge passion of mine. I already have books, models, and posters related to aviation because I am just the coolest person, but I do not have anything super unique that I made. This is sparking some ideas since I think this would have a fun through thread in the project, linking my graduation from engineering school and entering into my schooling as a pilot. I’m not sure exactly how I want to encorporate this, I have some models laying around that I could hack into and make more interactive and unique with lights and motors. I also thought maybe I could build my own drone? But after doing some research into what is required to make a drone, building one seems easy, but trouble shooting and making sure all of the control systems are working properly would likely be something I could not figure out in the remainder of the semester.


Graduation Gift: Since there really won’t be a large ceremony or way to commemorate finishing up 4 years of school, I’m gonna take the responsibility upon myself to create something for myself. I’ve had a lot of random projects over the years, and it’s cool to see the progress I have made and the skills I’ve learned with each project. Obviously my senior design project is the ultimatum in what I’ve learned in my time here. While I am proud of the project, I am probably never going to see it again once I graduate since the school owns it. On top of that, it isn’t very personal so I want to make something that is both personal and really culminates what I’ve learned in my time here. I don’t know what the personal component will look like but I think using code, electronics, Arduino, math based skills/problem solving, fabrication, 3D printing, and laser cutting will really show the range of what I have learned in my time here.


While I do not have a concrete idea of what I want to make as an end product, I at least have an inspiration as of now. I’m going to follow those inspirations and tinker with some intial ideas I have to see where that takes me. Hopefully I will have a more concrete update for the next post, but I would rather show the process I am going through at the moment rather than deciding on something last minute when it really isn’t what I want to do.





Previous Post
Main Project Inspiration and Ideas
Next Post
Sporty/Casual Person Aesthetic

3 Comments. Leave new

  • Hey Ben,
    This is an awesome idea! I graduated May 2020 and did not receive any ceremony or commemoration of my efforts in undergrad! I think it is genius to incorporate everything you learned in undergrad to try and make a gift for yourself!

  • Valerie Welch
    March 7, 2021 11:10 pm

    Hi Ben, I think you’ve got some solid ideas so far! As a member of your senior design team, I think its a great idea to make a project that’s all yours that shows your range of skills from your time at CU. Perhaps some sort of artistic CU themed piece could incorporate some sensors, buttons and other electronics pieces and play the CU fight song or Pomp and Circumstance (the graduation song). I’m just throwing out ideas haha but I think you’ve got a lot to work with 🙂

  • Hey Ben,

    I think you have some really great inspirations to work with here! I really like the idea of integrating something to do with aviation, I think there’s a lot of ideas that could be pulled from that. Maybe taking the aesthetic of like old plane parts or something to create an artsy functional piece would be pretty cool. Or since that kind of thing would be difficult to get ahold of them replicating it somehow. I also really like the idea of implementing Arduino, I think small additions like a moving part or lights can really make a piece interesting. Have you narrowed things down anymore since this post?


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.