Jonathan Minchala

Role: Operations Coordinator

Major: Mechanical Engineering

Year: Class of 2021 (Junior)


Garnerville, NY

Extracurricular Activities

  • Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE)
  • RPI Ambulance


Imagineering the Future Other Presenters: Amy Reynolds, Timothy Spafford

A peek into how Disney engineers the theme parks we all know and love! Students learn the basics of potential and kinetic energy applications involved with roller coasters design and enjoyment. Simplifies the centripetal forces involved with the twists and turns. As well as friction and how it leads to the sudden stops that characterize many of Disney’s roller coasters. Students participate in a competition to design and build the best roller coaster inspired by a new understanding of forces, energy and Imagineering.

Wind Energy Other Presenters: Emily Ortega, Allison Douglas, Carly Nadler, Rachel Stagnitti, Mallory Gordon, Samantha Bliss, Dana Stevens, Leslie Chase, Kianna Brevig

This presentation will introduce the importance of the development of alternative energies to reduce America’s traditional dependency on oil. Wind energy will be the focus of the presentation as the technology will be described. The presentation will then focus on the engineering designs of the wind turbines. The hands-on activity will involve the students in designing the wind turbine blades. Sponsored by CURENT Engineering Research Center

Mathematics and Path Finding Robots Other Presenters: Lily O'Halloran, Nikhilas Murthy, Matthew Jahnes, David Glowny, Timothy Spafford, Emily Ortega, Alyssa Borges, Diana Klyuchnik

The presentation begins with examples and definitions of a robot, algorithm, and path finding. Then we start a small discussion on the applications of mathematics in robotics by providing examples of both simple and complex applications. We break mid-presentation for the hands on activity. The hands on activity mostly involves the simple equation: circumference * # of rotations = distance traveled. The end goal of the activity is to have the kids program a small NXT robot to move and pick up a ball without using trial and error. We give them a handout that has the recommended paths and distances the robot should cover as well as information on the dimensions of the robot so they can make the calculations. After the hands on activity we close the presentation with a short discussion on modeling the behavior of some small single celled organisms (E-coli) with mathematical algorithms as well as the future of path finding robotics (like autonomous cars).

Digital Sound Other Presenters: Nikhilas Murthy, Rohan Cherian-Ashe, Amy Reynolds, Casey-Ellen Collette, Liam Fahey, Denver Overend, David Glowny, Mallory Gordon, Nickolas Ziter, Brook Rulewich, Timothy Spafford, Jane Edgington, Alyssa Borges, Samantha Wong, Diana Klyuchnik, Ian Steenstra

People rely on the engineering behind the science of sound everyday, whether its through listening to an Ipod, setting up speakers for a public event, or even through hearing aids. And yet, in this digital age, it is not clear to many people how exactly sound is stored in a digital device, what sound actually is, and how sound can be produced electronically. Therefore, this presentation displays and explains the intriguing engineering behind sound and its application in electronic devices.

Designing A Safe Roller Coaster Other Presenters: Nikhilas Murthy, Louis Caponi, Casey-Ellen Collette, Rachel Stagnitti, Carly Nadler, Amy Reynolds, Andrew Gabbeitt, Skyler Lafemina, Hilary Fiorentino, Frederick Hole, Denver Overend, Zoe Westwater, Jane Edgington, Elizabeth Eckhardt, Lily O'Halloran

Roller coasters are engineering marvels that provide the ultimate physical experience, but some people are fearful to take a ride on one. While there are many reasons, this presentation dispels the myths of poor safety and inherent risk involved with riding roller coasters. Three main aspects are analyzed including the effects of forces on the body, particular track design considerations, and restraining systems implemented on different coaster types.

Getting into Orbit Other Presenters: (No other presenters)

The physics and mathematical concepts behind how a shuttle reaches orbit. The three stages to get into orbit are Lift, Ascent, and Orbit.

Space Exploration Other Presenters: Allison Douglas, Sue Cho

This presentation explains the basic chemistry and physics behind ion propulsion engines. It includes topics such as thrust and ionization. In addition, it enforces the importance of space exploration.

Bridge Building Other Presenters: (No other presenters)


Physics of Parachutes Other Presenters: Alyssa Borges, Lily O'Halloran, Samantha Wong

This presentation involves the physics behind how a parachutes works. The discussion of how forces interact with each other to make you land safely on the ground. A little history from the first parachute to the present parachutes and what parachutes have in store for us in the future and how engineers continue to devlop these massive parachutes.

Global Positioning Systems (GPS) Other Presenters: (No other presenters)

In this presentation, first we are going to talk what exactly the true definition of GPS is; and the answer may surprise you. Then we will dive into exactly how GPS can locate your exact position on the surface of the earth using a process called triangulation. And finally, we will talk about a few main sources of error and how to correct for these.

Polymers Other Presenters: Samantha Wong

There are three main sections this presentation covers. We’ll talk about polymer structure, how it leads to its mechanical properties, and finally how engineers can apply them to society.