BY JESSICA LANTHIER
The Office of Applied Research at Conestoga can give students more than just a final project.
They can also introduce them to a spectrum of innovation and development.
Students enrolled in some degree and diploma programs can work with businesses and develop highly impressive final projects, but also learn workplace skills including marketing. The applied research faculty connects students to businesses to create a marriage of ideas, experience, expertise and knowledge.
Currently, Conestoga students are working hand in hand with companies such as DifTek Lasers Inc., Kendall Technology Inc., and Xiris Automation Inc. Some of the current capstones are “Development of Prototypes of an Optical-Fiber Delivery Appliance for Use in Cancer Research,” “Generating Normalized Data Streams for Use in Financial Analytics,” and “Development of Terahertz Sensors to Sort Black Plastics.”
“The program provides students with instant knowledge because they are essentially doing a job that they will later be paid to do,” said Greg Robertson, director of applied research at Conestoga.
With help from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, Conestoga’s applied research office has $750,000 in funding for the students, labour and supplies.
“This is a great way to build relationships internally and externally,” said Jennifer Fletcher, research projects administrator at Conestoga.
“Working on a capstone with the company will give students real world experience and it will give them an edge in a highly competitive market.”
According to Andrea McManus, the Office of Applied Research administrative assistant, these projects will give students a well-rounded experience. Not only do they allow students to be innovative, but they also give them an introduction to the marketing of the final product.
“This opportunity is a lucrative thing,” McManus said. “Students will get a tangible result.”
The applied research team strives to make the student population aware of the opportunities available to them. They are always available for questions regarding capstones or general inquiries.
Their office is located in the Student Client Services Building, Rm. 239.