June was a time of celebration for the University
of Calgary's manufacturing engineering program. The month
marked the graduation of its 100th bachelor of science in
manufacturing engineering student - as well as the announcement
that the program was named one of the best of its kind in
the world by the leading international manufacturing engineering
To respond to the growing needs of the Alberta manufacturing
industry, the manufacturing program was first introduced in
the form of a minor program in computer-integrated manufacturing
in 1989, then as a full B.Sc. in manufacturing engineering
in 1995. The program's curriculum was developed collaboratively
with industry advisers, and focuses on strong engineering
fundamentals, advanced computer-integrated manufacturing technologies,
manufacturing management and comprehensive information technology
skills. The program also strives to provide students with
strong communication, teamwork and leadership skills.
Between 45 and 60 new students are admitted each year into
the program, providing the local economy with a growing number
of graduates with skills covering a broad range of fields,
including design and product realization, manufacturing systems,
production planning and controls, manufacturing enterprise
management, intelligent systems, robotics and more.
Despite the relative youth of the manufacturing program, the
Society of Manufacturing Engineers, and the Computer and Automated
Systems Association of the SME selected the program as this
year's winner of the CASA/SME University LEAD Award. The LEAD,
which stands for Leadership and Excellence in the Application
and Development of enterprise-wide integration, is presented
annually to outstanding university programs in the field.
The U of C Faculty of Engineering program now joins the company
of previous LEAD award winners such as Purdue, the Technical
University of Berlin, Georgia Tech and the Hong Kong University
of Science and Technology.
"With this award, Calgary will now be known as the home
of one of the highest-quality manufacturing engineering programs
in the world," said Dean Chan Wirasinghe, P.Eng., of
the U of C Faculty of Engineering. "This is a tribute
to the hard work and dedication of our faculty and staff -
led by the department head (of mechanical and manufacturing
engineering) Peihua Gu, P.Eng. - as well as our many industry
advisers who have helped to build this outstanding program."