With the cost of electricity continuing to rise, businesses and homes are looking at increasingly innovative ways to reduce consumption and help the environment.
While energy-efficient light bulbs and heating systems are now commonplace, Vancouver-based Unity Integration Corporation (UIC) looked to develop other technologies to help cut energy use in buildings even further.
UIC turned to Mitacs-Accelerate and Simon Fraser University for expertise on how to turn their idea of a low-cost, energy-efficient sensor system into reality.
The networking workshop has helped boost his confidence in sharing his research outcomes. “I am a social person naturally, but I lacked the formal training in how to act in a proper networking event. Learning the little things, like carrying business cards, building a LinkedIn profile and simply how to approach a stranger and make small talk were all very beneficial, and the instructors were excellent. Since I took the workshop, I have found that when I go to large events, I am better prepared to make meaningful connections with people in a natural way.”
It was Dr. Janice Singer, an IRAP-Industry Technology Advisor, who awarded Rafael the 1st prize in the poster competition and saw the great potential in Rafael’s and Larus' mutual interest in wireless sensors and robot networks.
For the last year and a half, Side Effects Software had been developing a web-based marketplace for highly-customizable 3D content. Similar to Apple’s App Store or Android’s Market, the company’s Orbolt™ Smart Asset Store is an application marketplace where digital artists can purchase smart 3D assets. Entering the e-commerce marketplace for the first time meant the company faced a number of unique challenges. They turned to Yeleiny through Mitacs-Accelerate for web performance expertise.
For Oleksandr Romanko of McMaster University’s Department of Computing and Software, a postdoctoral fellowship through Mitacs Elevate helped him to transition to the world of risk analytics when he was hired as a full time Research Analyst this summer by IBM.
Through a Mitacs Accelerate internship at the end of her Masters at Simon Fraser University, Vivien Lo was asked to develop a cost-benefit model for their technology— a challenge which landed her a job with the company full-time.
Having already completed Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Cellular Biology, Vivien found herself craving an entry into industry. This led her to SFU’s 2-year Masters of Business Administration for the Management of Technology (MBAMOT) program where she was awarded a Mitacs Accelerate internship for a graduating final project in the fall of 2011.
Kinfe is quick to acknowledge the role that Mitacs Elevate played in acquiring his new role.
“The Elevate program definitely helped in finding my new position. It helped me network and communicate better. The Mitacs Step and Elevate workshops I attended helped me build effective connections, and perform well during the interviews I had towards my dream job. Also, the interactions I had with my industrial partner were fruitful and developed further as we worked together.”
The five possible projects for Mitacs internships are still going through a final review by Blackbox management before being submitted to Mitacs for approval, Gedamu says, but will likely be offered fairly soon for interns through the Mitacs Accelerate internship program. A little further down the road, Gedamu says, there may even be a few more internship projects in the field of Electrical engineering, although those plans have yet to be finalized.