Undergraduate teams win big at this year’s Ontario Engineering Competition

Senior teamLast month, UWaterloo hosted the 37th annual Ontario Engineering Competition (OEC). Dozens of our very own students went up against 16 other Ontario universities and emerged on top.

Teams were given an engineering problem to solve and had to brainstorm solutions, budget for materials, and design a working solution to be presented to a panel of judges. The competition had several obstacles that demanded students’ most polished skills.

The senior Engineering ‘A’ society design team was made up of Eric Shi, Kenneth Geertsema, Wesley Fisher and Daniel Lizewski. In a six-hour time frame, the Mechanical and Mechatronics students built a robot that could dodge moving objects while deactivating alarms.

Our prototype featured a small robotic arm,” says Eric. “We built an external controller that allowed us to move that arm around. After deactivating the alarms, we could get the arm to retract to be small enough to dodge different walls.

The robotic design portrayed their ability to design and conquer, but not without a combination of major individual and team effort.

The biggest challenge was having a very limited budget, time and materials. It was a huge time crunch and we all had to work on different components, (mechanical, electrical and software) at the same time.

Senior teamThe students’ determination was not without reward, however. The ‘A’ senior design team placed second in the senior category, while the ‘A’ junior design team placed first in the junior design category.

With this strong finish, both teams will advance to the national competition at McGill University March 3 to 6. The Canadian Engineering Competition will feature a larger audience, an unfamiliar campus and an even more difficult problem to solve.  

It’s both exciting and humbling,” Wesley says, “We have the opportunity to meet and compete with teams from across the country, and also have the responsibility to represent UWaterloo, both professionally and otherwise. I’m excited for it.

This achievement has not only given these students something to be proud of, but has also exposed them to prospective employers interested in what today’s students are dreaming up.

Winning second place may have opened some career doors for us. Right after we were announced at the OEC we had a representative from one company come and tell us that we should submit resumes to his company and that they are always looking for bright individuals with talent.

solving math problemsTo prepare for the nationals, the senior team members will meet with professors on campus to get input on improvements that they can make to their design and presentation process.

Keep your eyes on the UWaterloo senior and junior teams, and wish them luck at the Canadian Engineering Competition next month!

Topics: 
  1. 2018 (56)
    1. December (1)
    2. November (5)
    3. October (7)
    4. September (4)
    5. August (1)
    6. July (2)
    7. June (5)
    8. May (8)
    9. April (3)
    10. March (7)
    11. February (5)
    12. January (8)
  2. 2017 (62)
    1. December (3)
    2. November (7)
    3. October (7)
    4. September (4)
    5. July (4)
    6. June (7)
    7. May (7)
    8. April (3)
    9. March (8)
    10. February (7)
    11. January (5)
  3. 2016 (73)
    1. December (2)
    2. November (5)
    3. October (6)
    4. September (6)
    5. August (4)
    6. July (6)
    7. June (8)
    8. May (9)
    9. April (6)
    10. March (9)
    11. February (7)
    12. January (5)
  4. 2015 (65)
    1. December (5)
    2. November (6)
    3. October (3)
    4. September (4)
    5. August (4)
    6. July (4)
    7. June (5)
    8. May (6)
    9. April (5)
    10. March (9)
    11. February (7)
    12. January (7)
  5. 2014 (88)
    1. December (3)
    2. November (8)
    3. October (9)
    4. September (8)
    5. August (4)
    6. July (9)
    7. June (8)
    8. May (9)
    9. April (7)
    10. March (8)
    11. February (7)
    12. January (8)
  6. 2013 (38)
    1. December (4)
    2. November (8)
    3. October (10)
    4. September (8)
    5. August (8)