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Humber students challenged to design future Skyjack solutions


September 6, 2016
By Anthony Capkun


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Left to right: Rob Gemmell, Troydon Rosario, Heather McDiarmid, Glenn Moffatt, Malcolm Early, Dennis Kappen. Photo Darryl Schipper, courtesy Skyjack.

September 6, 2016 – “The students’ designs were an impressive mix of innovation and practicality,” said Malcolm Early, vice-president of marketing with Skyjack, speaking of its recent partnership with Humber College students that has resulted in potential concepts for future Skyjack scissors and boom designs.

A maker of aerial work platforms, Skyjack challenged 4th-year industrial design students from the Bachelor in Industrial Design program to work on the aesthetic styling of Skyjack’s DC and RT scissors, articulated booms and telescopic booms.

“They independently visited customers and jobsites, then used those inputs to come up with innovative ideas ranging from terrain detection to camera systems,” added Early.

“This styling project was awesome. When we interacted with a lift on our own, we saw different areas where we could improve the machine’s ergonomics,” said student Michelle Tran. “One thing I learned through this project is that, whatever we designed, we had to take manufacturability and keeping costs low into consideration.”


The partnership was part of an industrial design practices course where faculty members Dennis L. Kappen and Glenn Moffatt asked 27 students to research competitive brands, visit equipment rental companies, conduct ethnographic research and assimilate operators and rental companies’ feedback on the Skyjack products.

“We also asked them to incorporate ergonomics and human factors design criteria into their design,” Kappen said.

The eight-week partnership kicked off with a visit to Skyjack’s plant where students saw the various mobile elevating work platforms’ functions and how users interact and operate them.

The students’ concepts were entered into a Skyjack-sponsored competition where a team of senior company executives, engineers and designers judged the ideas based on creativity, practicality and presentation. Three teams were awarded a total of $5000.

PHOTO 01 (left to right): Rob Gemmell, Troydon Rosario, Heather McDiarmid, Glenn Moffatt, Malcolm Early, Dennis Kappen. Photo Darryl Schipper, courtesy Skyjack.

PHOTO 02 (left to right): Elio Pedulla, Michelle Tran, Glenn Moffatt, Malcolm Early, Dennis Kappen, Curtis Rumble. Photo Darryl Schipper, courtesy Skyjack.

PHOTO 03 (left to right) Jacob Tomlinson, Jason MacDonald, Scott Taylor, Glenn Moffatt, Malcolm Early, Dennis Kappen. Photo Darryl Schipper, courtesy Skyjack.