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Vision 2015: Educating the Engineer of the Future

View of Engineering 5 overpass across Ring Road

Canada's premier engineering school

In 1956, The Globe and Mail posted an ad: Wanted: 150,000 Engineers. Waterloo answered the call.

When local entrepreneurs established our university, with Engineering as the founding faculty, they approached the task from a business perspective, knowing creativity and inventiveness were the keys to problem solving. Co-op education, as we now know it, was born. The approach was bold and shunned by the academic establishment.

The educational mandate was clear; teach people to think in new ways. 

Today, Waterloo is Canada’s largest engineering school and a pipeline for engineering talent for the world’s leading companies. Our reputation for excellence is built on the foundation of co-op education and a bold history of innovation. 

Our progress has been extraordinary. 

The Faculty’s Vision 2010 strategic plan guided Waterloo Engineering to a position as the top engineering school in Canada, counted among the leading engineering schools in North America and recognized by Bloomberg Businessweek as "Canada's Stanford."

In less than five years, we have met and exceeded our Vision 2010 fundraising target of $120 million, leading us into a new and expanded vision for 2015. 

Vision 2010 - A reflection on our success

  2005 2014
Undergraduate Students 5,109 6,995
Graduate Students 1,115 1,850
Faculty 210.8 291.9
Fundraising Goal N/A $120 million
Area of Focus                                                              Goal and $ Raised
Facilities $61.5M $73.2M
Graduate Scholarships and Student Experience $28.5M $46.7M
Chairs  $30M $11.1M
  • Fundraising Goal: $120 million
  • Successfully Raised: $131 million!

Vision 2015: Educating the Engineer of the Future

As we move into the next 50 years, we are at an inflection point: how are we going to prepare our students for the knowledge economy?

To succeed, we must raise the bar in engineering education–disrupting the learning space by launching a new model for technological education – one that will make Waterloo Engineering second to none in bringing innovation to the world.

Our vision is to educate the Engineer of the Future™.  As the physical world blurs with the digital, we must teach our students how to use this new layer of connected technology to improve the human condition.

We are extending our Vision 2010 goal with a $50 million fundraising campaign to enable the rich, collaborative environment that will inspire and nurture entrepreneurial students from day one.
Based on the philosophy of “Experience early, innovate early, incubate early”, The Engineer of the Future campaign will:
» Introduce Canada’s first Engineering Ideas Clinic®, a revolutionary space
where students can “test and fail” in open-ended
class projects
» Incubate the success of over 200 annual Capstone
design projects and student funded startups
» Create a pitch area for student entrepreneurs
» Introduce a new degree in Biomedical Engineering
» Expand admissions for Waterloo’s globally renowned
Mechatronics program
» Integrate a new headquarters for the Conrad Centre for Business,
Entrepreneurship and Technology Centre
» Introduce an undergraduate option in Entrepreneurship
» Create a new home for Waterloo Engineering Outreach,
increasing the diversity of women, youth and First Nations
in the engineering disciplines
» Enable the enrolment of an additional 840 undergraduates
The success engendered by our current curriculum is the foundation for the future. Waterloo Engineering seeks to capture and embody the mandate of the University of Waterloo’s strategic plan: to emerge as one of the world’s top innovation universities. 

Donor wall recognizing supporters of Waterloo EngineeringOur partners and donors share our desire to revolutionize engineering education. Current donations of $1,000 or more are recognized on our donor wall (pictured left) in Engineering 5. Individual gifts can be spread over a period of up to 5 years. 

Join us.

Just as co-op transformed us over the last 57 years, entrepreneurship will transform us over the next. We will educate the Engineer of the Future.

- PEARL SULLIVAN, Dean of Engineering

State of the art facilities

Check out our Vision 2010 Final Report (PDF)

Engineering 5 (E5) – A Striking New Presence on Campus for the Faculty of Engineering (Pictured left)

Engineering 6 (E6) – The Catalyst for Our Success  

Sunlight reflecting off the glass front of Engineering 6

Mike and Ophelia Lazaridis Quantum-Nano Centre (QNC)  

Douglas Wright Engineering (DWE) C-wing Renovations  

Planned extension on Douglas Wright C-Wing

Photo Credit: WalterFedy