Team Members

Team Leader
Chris Golecki
Chris Golecki: Co-Team Leader
Chris Golecki is a second year graduate student in Mechanical Engineering, with a focus on controls systems.  He was a co-team leader last year for the team, and was enthusiastic to experience the Year Two overall competition win, which was the first in 25 years for Penn State. Chris graduated summa cum laude from Penn State with a BS in Mechanical Engineering.  He has had multiple opportunities to obtain hands-on experience through his internship at Boeing as a Stress Analyst, and his work with the Department of State as a Crash Test Researcher.  Chris looks forward to another extremely successful year with the entire team. You can contact him at

Ben SattlerBen Sattler: Co-Team Leader
Benjamin Sattler is a sophomore in the Schreyer Honors College. Currently in the College of Engineering, he is double majoring in Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Science. Benjamin also works with Dr. Joel Anstrom in the Hydrogen Hybrid Electric Vehicle Laboratory, focusing on battery management systems. This past summer he held a research position at the University of Connecticut working on computational combustion simulation of biodiesel. In the future he hopes to continue working on making efficient vehicles as well as researching alternative transportation. Benjamin can be contacted at

Tyler QuinnTyler Quinn: Mechanical Co-Team Leader
Tyler Quinn is a senior studying Mechanical Engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. His interest in sustainability and automotive made the PSU EcoCar 2 team a perfect fit for him. He is knowledgeable in finite element analysis, combustion, 3D CAD modeling, Matlab and much more. He has professional experience working as an intern for TE Connectivity in their fiber optics department. He can be contacted at

Tim Wilson
Tim Wilson: Mechanical Co-Team Leader
Tim is a senior in mechanical engineering, and is part of the mechanical engine bay team for the Ecocar2 team. Tim interned at Schott North America, Inc. for two years as a process engineer where he was the chief designer of various machine components to improve company production. Some of Tim’s ideas for improving Ecocar2 for the third year competition are redesigning the vehicle intake plenum and designing an exhaust header hear shield. After graduation, Tim hopes to get an engineering position in an automotive company/firm. You can contact Tim at

IssamIssam Salloum: Mechanical Team Member
Issam is a senior in Mechanical Engineering. His desire to “make the world a better place” is what led him to EcoCAR2. His coursework includes mechanical design, thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, heat and mass transfer, modeling of dynamics systems and vibrations of mechanical systems. In the summer of 2013, he worked for Newark Paperboard Solutions, which is a company that produced 100% recycled paperboard. Through his internship, Issam was able to gain experience in SolidWorks, troubleshoot issues pertaining to mechanical design, and understand the importance of sustainability.  He can be contacted at

Nick Wyckoff

Nick Wyckoff: Mechanical Team Member

Nick is a senior in Mechanical Engineering. This is Nick’s first year with the EcoCAR 2 team. Nick plans to use the knowledge he has acquired from his courses at Penn State to contribute to the best of his ability to the EcoCAR 2 team. Nick also hopes to utilize the modeling skills he has attained through his internship with Becht Engineering this past summer designing HVAC systems. He will be working with the mechanical team focusing on the body components of the vehicle. You can contact him at

Daniel Shriver
Daniel Shriver: Mechanical Team Member
Daniel Shriver is currently a senior in Penn State’s undergraduate Mechanical Engineering program. This past summer he was involved in a research project on Penn State’s University Park campus. He acted as the mechanical engineer on a research team. During his time in this position he was responsible for designing and constructing novel experimental platforms for neural experiments. This required as great deal of time designing specific parts in SolidWorks as well as many hours of machining in the machine shop. Aside from his research, Daniel is also involved in Penn State’s open source 3D printing class and club, which requires a great deal of design as well. These qualifications make him a useful member of the vehicle mechanical team.

Tom Vassa
 Tom Vassa: Mechanical Team Member
Thomas Vassa is a senior in mechanical engineering at Penn State. His interest in cars led him to the EcoCAR team, where he works with the engine bay subgroup. He is interested in a career in the automotive field after graduation. In his free time, he rides and repairs mountain bikes and takes on various car related projects, including light restoration. During his junior year, he spent a semester abroad in Australia, part of which was spent investigating the physical properties of beta titanium alloys. You can contact him at


Chris Fermin
Chris Fermin: Mechanical Team Member
Christopher Fermin is a senior studying mechanical engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. Christopher has a strong interest in internal combustion engines on how detailed and complex they are and how they work. He is part of the mechanical team for the EcoCar2 competition where his focus will be on successfully designing a new flywheel for a better improved vehicle status. Christopher has had the opportunity to work for a very prestigious company Oshkosh Corporation for the access branch JLG for the summer of 2013.  Over the course of his experience he learned what is expected for him in the work place, the amount of work hours needed to complete a task, and the knowledge base he should have to become a successful engineer in his field.

Steven Evans
Steven Evans: Mechanical Team Member
Steven Evans is a senior majoring in Mechanical Engineering. He began his college career at the Penn State Harrisburg campus for his first two years, and is now studying at University Park. During his junior year, he was a member of the Formula SAE Race Team at Penn State, where he worked on the drivetrain for the 2013 vehicle. Now, for his senior year, he will be working on the EcoCAR2 team for Year Three competition with the 2013 Chevy Malibu. Steven will be graduating in May 2014 and is looking forward to a career in the automotive industry.

Mike Rihl

Mike Rihl: Electrical Team Leader

Mike Rihl is a senior in Mechanical Engineering. Mike is focusing his academics on automotive engineering by taking classes on fuel cell engines, microcomputer interfacing and vehicle road dynamics. He gained technical hands on experience working for a small engine shop and HVAC company. Recently he finished restoring a 1987 jeep wrangler and converted its original 4 cylinder drive train to a v8. He will utilize and expand his current academic knowledge and technical experience as the electrical team leader . You can contact Mike

Chris Monaco
Chris Monaco: Controls Team Leader
Chris Monaco is a senior majoring in Mechanical Engineering at Penn State.  His passion for the automotive industry and desire for an environmentally sustainable future inspired him to join the Penn State Advanced Vehicle Team.  This is Chris’s first year with the team.  He has prior experience in the automotive industry through an internship in the Vehicle Compliance and Analysis department of Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC.  He has also worked as a Mechanical Engineering intern at LGS Bell Labs Innovations and W&H Systems, Inc.  You can contact Chris at


Ken Swidwa
Ken Swidwa: Controls Team Member
Kenneth Swidwa is senior studying Mechanical Engineering at Penn State. He has had experience across a variety of roles within industry, beginning with a summer spent working as a mechanic. Leveraging past knowledge as he moved across various industry functions he then began professional co-ops and internships with the General Electric Company in the Transportation Division. Working in Erie, Pennsylvania, he completed roles in Quality, Manufacturing, and most recently Engine Control Systems for Locomotives. Driven by this most recent profession experience, he is now cultivating his passion for modeling and control of dynamic systems through his contributions to the controls group of the Advanced Vehicle Team at Penn State.

Jim Kreibick
Jim Kreibick: Controls Team Member
James Kreibick is a senior majoring in Electrical Engineering. This is James’s first year working with the Penn State Advanced Vehicle Team. His major’s curriculum gave him the knowledge for control theory, CAN networks, power systems, and electronics that will be used to help refine a vehicle algorithm. In summer 2013 James worked for the Larson Technology Institute in the BATTERY lab as a research assistant running and designing tests on batteries of various chemistry types. You can contact James at


Cheyenne Sexton
Cheyenne Sexton: Communications Team Leader
Cheyenne Sexton is a senior majoring in public relations.  This is Cheyenne’s second year with PSU EcoCAR 2.  She is also an Account Executive for Penn State’s student-run public relations firm Happy Valley Communications.  This past summer Cheyenne had a marketing internship at Shipley Energy in York, PA.  At Penn State, Cheyenne is part of the Schreyer Honors College, where she is currently working on her honors thesis focusing on how automotive companies communicate sustainability efforts through social media.  You can contact her at

Jen Diehl
Jen Diehl: Communications Team Member
Jen Diehl is a senior majoring in public relations with a minor in recreation, park, and tourism management (commercial event planning).  Jen is a new account associate for Happy Valley Communications,a Penn State student-run public relations firm. She also serves as one of the Event Planning Committee Chairs for the Public Relations Student Society of America at Penn State. This past summer, Jen worked as an intern at the Manayunk Development Corporation in Philadelphia, PA. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to work with everyone on Penn State’s Advanced Vehicle Team this year! You can reach her

Victoria Scipione
Victoria Scipione: Communications Team Member
Victoria Scipione is a senior majoring in public relations with a minor in business. Victoria is extremely excited to begin working with Penn State’s Advanced Vehicle Team for the first time. She is also a new account associate at Happy Valley Communications, a student-run public relations firm at Penn State. This past summer Victoria had the opportunity to be an intern at Johnson and Johnson Consumer Brands Company. She can’t wait to start working with everyone! You can contact her at


Caroline Arriojas
Caroline Arriojas: Communications Team Member
Caroline Arriojas is a sophomore majoring is public relations with a minor in business. This is Caroline’s first year working with the Penn State’s Advanced Vehicle team and she is very enthusiastic about this new experience. She is also a new account associate for Penn State’s student-run public relations firm Happy Valley Communications. In the past, Caroline has interned with the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office in Trenton, NJ and with Firefly Music Festival-Communications Division in Dover, DE. She is very excited to begin working with the team! You can contact her at

Andie Ashbaugh
Andie Ashbaugh: Communications Team Member
Anderson Ashbaugh is a sophomore majoring is public relation. This is Anderson’s second year on the Advanced Vehicle Team and hopes to be a key role and another successful year for the team. This is also Anderson’s second year as an Account Associate for Happy Valley Communications. Though only a sophomore, Anderson has learned so much being apart of the Advanced Vehicle Team and looks forward to applying that information to this year as well. You can contact her at


Jacob Hauptman
Jacob Hauptman: Business Manager
Jacob is a Southern California native. As a sophomore, he is planning on majoring in Supply Chain Management while pursuing a minor in Spanish and International Business. This is Jacob’s second year as Business Manager. He is ready to tackle the business deliverables of EcoCAR 2 Year Three with the rest of the Business Department. If you have any interest of joining the team or becoming a sponsor please reach out to Jacob! His email is and the Business Department’s phone number is (814) 731-1288.

Grant McGuire
Grant McGuire: Business Team Member
Grant is an Energy Business and Finance major and joined the business team of EcoCar this past summer. He is a junior hoping to pursue a career in mid-stream oil automation with the help of his Engineering Entrepreneurship minor. Grant is also an executive member of the Energy Business and Finance Society (EBFS) and involved with the Blue and White Society. You can reach Grant at 


Tomas Hanzlik
Tomas Hanzlik: Business Team Member
Tomas Hanzlik is a junior pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Finance in tandem with an Integrated Master’s degree program in Accounting. He has been a member of the Varsity Penn State Men’s Tennis team since his freshman year. His professional involvement includes Beta Alpha PSI and Penn State Investment Association. He is looking forward to using his financial analytical skills to help the Advance Vehicle Team win the EcoCar 2 Competition. You can contact him at

Risheng Chen
Risheng Chen: Business Team Member
Risheng is a senior majoring in Energy Business and Finance. This is Risheng’s first year working with Penn State Advanced Vehicle Team. He has ever done energy audit in the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) Penn State Chapter, and has been to Costa Rica to attend renewable energy programs. This summer, he has internship doing international business in Agricultural Bank of China. He is excited about the chance to work in EcoCar 2, and hope to get more experience from the team. You can contact him at



Faculty Advisors

Dr. Dan Haworth:
Daniel C. Haworth is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering in the Department of Mechanical & Nuclear Engineering in the College of Engineering at Penn State. He holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University (1979) and a PhD (1986) in Mechanical Engineering from Cornell University. He is the director of the Vehicle Systems & Safety program at the Thomas D. Larson Pennsylvania Transportation Institute and has served as an advisor to Penn State’s Advanced Vehicle Team since 2001.Contact him at

Gary Neal

Gary Neal is a Research Engineer and Department Head with the Applied Research Laboratory at Penn State University. As part of his duties as a mechanical engineer, Gary’s two main areas during his 12 year tenure at the Lab have been drivetrain technology and underwater weapons systems. Gary is the Department Head of the Systems Development and Engineering Department and an Adjunct Professor in the Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering Department at Penn State. You can contact him at

Dr. Jeffrey Mayer:

Dr. Mayer joined Penn State in 1991. He is also affiliated with the Fluid Dynamics Department of the Applied Research Laboratory at Penn State. Dr. Mayer’s research and teaching interests are in the related areas of power electronics, electric machinery, and power system dynamics. Dr. Mayer earned a Ph.D. from Purdue University in Electrical Engineering; a M.S. from Purdue University in Electrical Engineering; and a B.S. from Purdue University in Electrical Engineering. You can contact him at