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  • Writer's pictureLenora Thomas

Community Builder Spotlight: University of Calgary - Schulich School of Engineering

The Schulich School of Engineering, part of the University of Calgary, has a rich history of fostering innovation and excellence in engineering education. Established in 1965 as the Faculty of Engineering, it was renamed after Canadian philanthropist Seymour Schulich, who donated $25 million to the school in 2005. The faculty started with 40 students and 2 professors, and now proudly hosts over 4,000 students and 150 faculty members.

Schulich offers a diverse array of undergraduate and graduate programs in various engineering disciplines, including civil, electrical, mechanical, chemical, and software engineering. Specialized programs such as biomedical engineering, geomatics engineering, and energy engineering further distinguish its academic offerings.

Research Excellence

The Schulich School of Engineering is renowned for its emphasis on innovation and interdisciplinary research, often in collaboration with industry partners. Notable research projects include:

  • Biomedical Engineering – Dr. Kristina Rinker Pioneering work in tissue engineering, focusing on the development of biomaterials and stem cell therapies, including exploring how blood flow impacts cellular responses and utilizing this knowledge to improve bioproduct manufacturing, inhibit infections, and enhance the effectiveness of drug delivery systems​

  • Chemical and Petroleum Engineering – Dr. Mayank Sabharwal – A wide-ranging energy focus with a particular lens on hydrogen. He actively contributes to hydrogen technology development and the transition to green hydrogen solutions​

  • Civil Engineering – Dr. Tricia Stadnyk - Works in Hydrology and hydrologic sciences, water isotopes and hydrologic modeling. Her work focuses on hydrologic modeling, particularly involving water isotopes to study changes in hydrologic processes and improve long-term projections of water supply. 

  • Electrical and Software Engineering – Dr. Elise Fear - A primary research focus on microwave imaging and sensing, particularly for biomedical applications such as cancer diagnosis and treatment. Dr. Fear co-founded Wave View Imaging, a startup aimed at commercializing these microwave imaging technologies to improve patient outcomes and healthcare diagnostics​.

  • Geomatics Engineering – Dr. Naser El-Sheimy - Work spans satellite technologies, multi-sensor systems, and driverless cars, with significant contributions to navigation and positioning technologies. Recently, Dr. El-Sheimy was honored with the International Achievement Award at the Calgary Awards, recognizing his global impact on mobile mapping and positioning technology. 

  • Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering – Dr. Alex Ramirez-Serrano – Developing medical robotics for minimally invasive surgery and rehabilitation. Dr. Ramirez-Serrano is also the founder and CEO of 4Front Robotics, a company that specializes in creating highly maneuverable drones and custom field unmanned vehicles for deployment in confined spaces like collapsed buildings. 

Community Engagement

Schulich has strong industry ties, offering students numerous opportunities for internships, co-op programs, and collaborative research projects, which contribute significantly to the growth of talent in the industry. The school actively promotes STEM education through summer camps, workshops, and school visits, aiming to inspire and educate the next generation of engineers.

Additionally, Schulich hosts conferences, workshops, and public lectures to demystify engineering and cultivate a culture of continuous learning. These events foster engagement within the technical community and beyond.

Student and Alumni Networks

The school supports numerous student organizations and engineering clubs, such as the Schulich Engineering Students' Society (SESS) and the Robotics Club. These groups provide students with leadership opportunities, hands-on experience, and a sense of community.

Schulich's alumni network remains actively involved, mentoring current students, providing career guidance, and fostering professional connections. This strong alumni involvement helps sustain the school’s legacy of excellence and community building.

Impact on the Technical Community

The Schulich School of Engineering is a cornerstone of the Albertan technology community. Through its comprehensive programs, rigorous research, and active involvement in community and industry initiatives, Schulich continues to be a pivotal force in shaping the future of engineering and technology.

This post is in partnership with Technology Alberta and the ASTech Awards, celebrating the impact of 35 years of innovation in Alberta, tying our past to our present.

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