Industry and Community Partnerships

Partnerships between the Faculty of Engineering, industry, and engineering professionals enrich the learning and research programs within the faculty. They have far-reaching impacts.

By supporting a research chair in engineering, for example, new knowledge is passed on to industry to improve standards and practices while educating highly qualified personnel; other activities such as mentorships enhance student experiences, and ultimately strengthen the engineering profession.

Engineering firms and industrial partners are involved in the faculty through:

  • Hiring Co-op students
  • Presenting design challenges to students and adjudicating student capstone projects
  • Providing financial and in-kind support for collaborative research activities
  • Recruiting engineering students at career fairs
  • Mentoring activities such as skills seminars, industry mixers, and first-year night events

Our industry partners play a vital role in advancing research and education. Gifts from industry and individuals can help establish scholarships or research chairs in association with national and international peer-reviewed funding agencies. These partnerships support 16 NSERC Industrial Research Chairs and 11 endowed chairs and professorships, greatly increasing the our teaching and research capacity.

Fueling innovation

Examples of these successful partnerships abound. Operating under a partnership between the U of A Faculty of Engineering, Imperial Oil and Alberta Innovates, the Institute for Oil Sands Innovation (IOSI) conducts high-level research aimed at revolutionizing oil sands technology.

Other partnerships between industry and the faculty focus on areas as diverse as electrical power grid systems, masonry, and welding and joining.

Impact on Campus and Beyond

Support from industry and the engineering profession in capstone design courses, and financial support for engineering design projects give our students more opportunities to apply their knowledge through hands-on projects. Support from industry and individual donors helps provide student study space, labs, and common areas.

Support for the Faculty of Engineering can also have an impact on the greater community. Donations from our industry partners to DiscoverE, a student-delivered initiative with a focus on fun, accessibility and mentorship, means children who might not otherwise participate in these educational programs are able to experience the excitement of engineering, science and technology.