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hstedmanI'm also a mechanical engineering student, I have no experience building skis but a friend of mine who was one of the best mechanical engineering students at our school (he works at SpaceX now) built his own snowboard a couple years ago.
From what I saw and heard from him about it, it was a cool process for him and he got to learn how everything was put together. However, the actually quality of the board was not near what you would find from a name brand product. So what I would say is, if you are interested in it to learn how everything is put together and what processes go into building skis, then by all means, do it. But if you are trying to do it because you want to save money vs. buying a pair of skis, don't.
Lastly I know if I made a pair of skis I would be terrified about bringing them out and accidentally destroying them, I would probably just leave them on my wall as an art piece.
If you do decide to make them though, definitely post your progress on NS - i'm sure a lot of us would be interested to follow your progress!