Mines Staff

Ashlyn Orr: "I am working in the Human-Centered Design Studio which I love because we are making things that people will actually use."

Superior, CO
Mechanical Engineering Student
Ashlyn Orr

Why did you choose to come to Mines? What have you enjoyed most about being here?

I chose to come to Mines because I wanted to go to a school full of people who think academically the same as I do. I also loved the smaller college and felt that I got more personal interactions than at larger colleges.

Tell us about something you're working on right now that you find exciting, fulfilling or challenging.

For my senior design project, I am working in the Human-Centered Design Studio which I love because we are making things that people will actually use. I love being able to make a difference in their lives and hopefully bring some joy to them. One of my current projects is creating a pair of pants for a bilateral amputee veteran who is climbing Kilimanjaro this upcoming summer to raise awareness for mental health issues in veterans. I am in awe of that and love that the project can create a huge impact.

Have you done an internship or co-op or been in a professional job while at Mines? Tell us who you worked for and what you were doing. What stands out?

Unfortunately, due to Covid, my internship was canceled this last summer. I grade for some math classes at Mines so nothing too cool.

What communities, groups or organizations—on- and off-campus—are important to you and why?

I am a part of SWE (Society of Women Engineers) and I think it’s important to me because they bring in women who are in STEM and I think it is so helpful for me to see people in these positions.

What are your plans for the future? What's your dream job?

My plans for the future would be to get a job in the biomedical field. I want to have a full and happy life as well in my future. My dream job would be to work on orthopedic implants to improve their material properties and make them match the body’s properties more closely.

What would you tell someone interested in joining your academic program or Mines in general?

I would tell them that it is difficult but the community of students and teachers are there to help you succeed. If you ask for help you will get it. And in terms of mechanical engineering, there are so many ways you can go about learning things in mechanical engineering that you can kinda focus on what you want to do.

What's your favorite thing to do outside of class and coursework? How do you unwind, manage stress, find fulfillment, etc.?

I have a dog and I love to spend time with him and go for walks. I have recently taken up embroidery because I wanted a fun and creative hobby. I try to treat myself and not stress out all the time. I have also started reading again and have loved getting pulled into great stories.

Tell us something about you that most people would be surprised to learn.

Most people are surprised that I was born and raised in Maryland for half my life.


Mines Staff

About Mines
Colorado School of Mines is a public research university focused on science and engineering, where students and faculty together address the great challenges society faces today - particularly those related to the Earth, energy and the environment.