Change the world

School of Engineering

The School of Engineering are involve in a large number of School and Tertiary learners based projects and programmes.

South African National Roads Agency Limited (SANRAL) Science, Engineering, Technology and related Management fields Pipeline Project (STEM) Pipeline Project

The STEM Pipeline Project at the Missionvale Campus of Nelson Mandela University focuses on e-Education in Physical Science and Mathematics. The aim is to impact on learners’ understanding of Physical Science and related Mathematics principles as well as their ability to apply skills and science reasoning.

Technology Research Activity Centre (TRAC) Eastern Cape Centre

TRAC is involved in education intervention programmes, where the main aim is to uplift the standard of Physical Science education in South Africa. This is done with educator training programmes, vocational guidance assistance, as well as classroom intervention in schools where the resources are limited or lacking.

Automotive Experiential Career Development Programme (AECDP) Winter School

The programme is effective in preparing previously disadvantaged learners whilst still at school for careers that are dependent on good Mathematics and Science results. This winter school also exposes learners to various engineering disciplines with a specific focus on the automotive industry.

University Collaborative Learning Programme

The purpose of the programme is to assist Grade 12 pupils in improving their matric pass rate, through the support and tutoring of school learners on Saturdays’.

merSETA Chair for Engineering Development

The purpose of this Chair is to grow human resources in mechanical engineering, mechatronics and Industrial engineering in order to enhance the manufacturing industry in the Eastern Cape to enable competitiveness and a growing and sustainable economy. The chair has also set up a Women in Engineering Leadership Association initiative within the institution with the aim of mentoring female students and establishing engineering as a desirable career aspiration for girls and women.

Top School Design Competition

A competition for Grade 12 learners at selected schools using AutoCAD that involves the design, detailing and manufacture of a component.

Department of Roads and Transport Saturday Training School for Engineering

The Saturday school initiative provides supplementary education in Physical Science, Mathematics and English for grades 10, 11 and 12. The main focus is to identify and train potential engineering students from all participating regional schools.

Mandela Racing Formula Student

The Formula Student vehicle is a single-seat formula type car with a 600cc motorcycle engine and fully independent double-wishbone suspension. Advanced technology is used to develop these cars including the latest computer-aided design and engineering CAD/CAE software, electronic fuel injection control, engine and chassis data acquisition with telemetry for vehicle parameter monitoring and the latest steel, aluminium alloy and composite manufacturing techniques.

Baja Bug Competition

Participating students have to design and build a prototype – being a single-seater, four-wheeled, off-road recreational vehicle, to meet given design specifications. These cars, powered by a 7,5kW engine must be safe, easy to transport and service and able to negotiate tough terrain. The design of the actual vehicle is open to the ingenuity and resourcefulness of the students.

Siemens Cyber Junkyard

This competition is an inter-tertiary challenge aimed at exposing and stimulating real-life project engineering to engineering students in higher education. The brief of the competition changes every year and teams receive a sponsorship from Siemens, Festo and LappKabel to assist them in completing the task.

VWSA Mandela Solar Car Project

The Advanced Mechatronic Technology Centre at Nelson Mandela University has initiated a Solar Car project in conjunction with the VWSA–DAAD International Chair in Automotive Engineering. The project will entail the design and development of a solar powered car that will allow students across a range of study fields to conduct research into the renewable energy market and to build on the base of expanding accumulated knowledge in green engineering. This car will take part in an international race in South Africa.


wela (women in engineering leadership association)

merSETA, together with Nelson Mandela University, initiated the wela programme with the aim of empowering young female engineering students at the institution. The duo has recognised the importance of promoting and developing women in this emerging field and to market it as a desirable career aspiration. It is the intention of wela to focus on academic, professional and personal development of women in engineering and to be of service to the community.