by Jacqueline Gergal.
The Quantum Nano-Centre was bustling with 200+ nanotechnology students who attended the third annual Waterloo Nanotechnology Conference last month.
Founded in 2015, a group of ambitious and determined students collaborated to launch a nanotechnology conference at the University of Waterloo. Leading the executive committee as conference chair is Jatin Patil, a 4A Nanotechnology Engineering co-op student.
“This conference addresses a relatively new field that represents cutting-edge advancements in several disciplines such as medicine and mechanical engineering,” says Patil. “This conference is a platform for students to form connections with peers, future employers, and future clients; we have seen outcomes such as co-op employment stemming from the conference in previous years.”
The conference welcomed distinguished guest speakers including Joanna Aizenberg, Ph.D., a professor at Harvard University and Dr. Rina Carlini, President, and CEO, Haltech Innovation.
During an industry panel, each speaker shared experiences and words of wisdom with the attendees. Dr. Rina Carlini touched on the value of the co-op program. “Co-op education, like all experiential learning, really reinforces all that learning you do in the classroom,” she said. “You see it in real action, and you are surrounded by professionals who become your mentors.”
Vismit Joshi, a conference volunteer and 4A Nanotechnology Engineering co-op student, worked for Defense Research and Development Canada during his last co-op term. “I performed applied research, which included developing a bio-mathematical model and experimentally evaluating the stability and feasibility of a bio-medicine.”
Joshi’s favourite part about being in the Nanotechnology Engineering co-op program is its multi-disciplinary program and opportunity for work experiences. “Through co-op, I have discovered my career interests by working in diverse industries including defense, pharmaceuticals, Information Technology, and media/telecommunications. Nanotechnology is a vibrant and fast-growing field with so much potential for innovation, and students can lead this growth.”
Follow the Waterloo Nanotechnology Conference website to learn about next year’s conference and how you can get involved.