Adam Mayeda is a 5th year at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo.  He is majoring in Mechanical Engineering and graduating in June 2020.  Adam and his teammates are working with on the Service Dog Ramp Challenge.  A retired Army Veteran was injured in 2003 by a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG). Due to the shrapnel and dirt, he suffered multiple infections and endured 24 surgeries.  In 2015, he elected to undergo a right leg, above the knee amputation.  He has a service dog, Rory, who accompanies him in his F150 Ford truck. Rory is a 7-year-old, specialty-trained service dog, and they have been tasked with designing a ramp to help him get in and out of the truck.
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Why did you choose your major? I chose Mechanical Engineering because I felt it would give me a great opportunity to learn and understand how things are designed and built.  As a kid, I loved playing with LEGOs and building anything my mind could think of.   I love using my hands and putting things together and I believed that Mechanical Engineering would help me understand the science and technical aspects of designing and creating things.

Describe your experience working with QL+ so far.  Working with QL+ has been a great experience.  They have been extremely supportive throughout this process and have been willing to share all the resources that they have in order to ensure that we are able to complete our project and leave our challenger satisfied.

Working with our Challenger has given me a better understanding and perspective on those who are considered disabled.  The ability to walk is something I take for granted but hearing our Challenger's story and understanding his needs has been very humbling.  It has also given me a newfound respect and admiration for those who serve and the sacrifice that they make for me to live my life the way I do.  His positivity is encouraging and it motivates me to make sure that my project is successful and can hopefully improve his and Rory’s quality of life.

What would you say to other students about QL+? I would encourage other students to seek out opportunities to work with QL+.  They give you valuable experience on actual engineering projects that you know will have a positive impact on someone’s life.  Being able to use what you have learned in school in order to help someone is always a great motivation.
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What are your plans after graduation?  I plan to either stay in San Luis Obispo or go back home to Sacramento and find a job.

What has been the proudest moment of your college career?  My proudest moment of my college career was when I was able to perform a song live on the guitar after only having just started learning how to play three months prior.

What three words best describe you? Funny, Laid-Back, Athletic