Carnegie Mellon University


October 11, 2019

Leite Hosts Mars Industries Workshop to Crowdsource Undergrad Perspectives

jp1rlqju_400x400.jpgFernanda Leite (PhD ‘09) has chosen CMU as one of three universities across the country to pilot the Construction Industry Institute (CII) workshop, “Project 2050: Mars Industries.” Billed as an opportunity to “imagine the industries of Mars,” the October 12th workshop is part of a CII-funded study that’s collecting crowdsourcing ideas from next-generation leaders.

“We want to leverage ideas from undergrads across campus, both engineering and non-engineering,” says Leite. The goal is to gain perspective from individuals unencumbered by professional work experience. “Teams of undergrads will be asked to come up with ideas of how to build a colony on Mars, given a set of constraints that may include the absence of human workers.”

Students will be challenged to focus on means and methods—and representatives from Fluor, Exxon, Eastman, and CCC will be in attendance to assist in moderation.

“Our first workshop was at University of Texas-Austin,” where Leite is an associate professor. “CMU is our second, and we're also having one at Georgia Tech,” she adds.

While Leite will be attending the conference remotely, two PhD students will be moderating the workshop while she watches via 360 cameras.

Leite is excited to provide this opportunity to students at her alma mater. “My time at CEE shaped who I am, in terms of both pushing the boundaries of our discipline and collaborating with other disciplines.”