During the 2019 Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) National Convention in Phoenix, Ariz., a student team featuring Rice bioengineering junior Eric Torres took home first place in the Nissan Design Competition
. Torres’ team, Mic Check 1-2-3, included Bonnie de Almeida, a senior at Rutgers University, and Ricardo Vela, a graduate student at the University of North Texas. The students had not met before being paired with each other. With 21 other students, they were given four days to address a need in the automotive industry. The competition challenged the students to develop an idea collaboratively, refine their briefing and pitching skills and learn experientially from peers, engineers, and leaders from Nissan and SHPE.