Mitacs Accelerate Professor Profile – Dr. Stephen Chen, York University

After completing his PhD in Robotics at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, he worked at IBM before moving to York University to take up a position at the School of Information Technology in 2001 where he is now an Associate Professor.

Dr. Chen has supervised three post-doctoral fellows through Mitacs-Accelerate internships, each lasting for at least 12 months, and is in the process of applying for two more.  He credits Mitacs for helping him secure more funding for his diverse research goals.

Mitacs-Accelerate Professor Profile: Dr. Jon Rokne – University of Calgary

Originally from Norway, he moved to Canada 1964 and completed a Masters of Science and a PhD in Mathematics at the University of Calgary, before joining the Department of Computer Science at the university as a professor.

Globalink Professor Profile: Dr. Yonghao Ni, University of New Brunswick

With Mitacs taking care of all of the housing costs and stipends for the students, hosting the students is made easy. Dr. Ni has hosted three Mitacs Globalink students in previous years who were from India, who worked side-by-side his Mitacs-Accelerate interns and other graduate students. He is looking forward to accepting a fourth student this upcoming summer from Brazil.

Improving earthquake safety with Mitacs-Accelerate

It is this knowledge that Kamloops-based firm West Edge Engineering Ltd. was looking for when they approached UBC Okanagan’s School of Engineering.

There, they were teamed up with Engineering Masters student Konrad Duerr, through a Mitacs-Accelerate internship.

Konrad worked on implementing seismic hazard assessment computer software at West Edge, allowing the company to carry out earthquake risk assessments on buildings – something they had not been able to do before the internship.

Globalink Professor Profile: Dr. Christian Desrosiers of École de Technologie Supérieure

Each student brings different experiences and perspectives to their individual projects, playing a key role in Dr. Desrosiers research. His lab’s first Mitacs Globalink student, Indian student Kuldeep Kumar began a project in the summer of 2011 using machine learning to extract data from social networks in order to analyze their growth and evolution. In 2012, Globalink student Qiquan Shi from China continued, and advanced that same research.

Mitacs-Accelerate Professor Profile: Dr. Afzal Suleman

A professor at the University of Victoria’s Faculty of Engineering, Dr. Suleman has been participating in the program since its inception, with more than 15 internships supervised so far.

“Because each project has an industry partner that is a for-profit company, there is a commercial element to it, so the research is more focused on industry needs and we get results much more quickly than if it was just academic research.  We can then identify other research issues and expand the project – we can go big.”

Globalink Professor Profile: Dr. Pierre Sullivan from UToronto

While much research exists to study large commercial airliners, micro-air vehicles remain under-studied by comparison. As Director of the Turbulence Research Lab at UofT, Dr. Sullivan is studying aerodynamic control of these aircraft flying at low speeds, with the goal of developing methods to improve their performance at minimal cost to manufacturers.

Fighting fires before they start

Parsons Brinckerhoff Halsall Inc, a consulting engineering firm in Toronto that specializes in vertical building construction, recognized this incredible risk to its clients and reached out to the Mitacs-Accelerate program to find the expertise it needed to resolve it.  “Not a lot of people in structural engineering actually devote their careers to fire research,” reported Michael Buckley, Vice President at Halsall, which is why he jumped on the opportunity to engage with a graduate student at Queen’s University through Mitacs-Accelerate.

Advancing into the next stage of the business world

Acculogic, an Ontario-based robotics testing company, saw the potential to advance its theoretical base originally through a Mitacs-Accelerate internship in collaboration with Mario Morfin, a mathematics post-doctoral fellow from York University’s School of Information Technology.  When the algorithms for the new optimization process were completed, the company was faced with the challenge of continuing to build upon the advancements that Mario had developed. The company turned to Mitacs Enterprise to provide the necessary funding to be able to maintain their relationship Mario while afford

Intern innovation drives business forward

Since the introduction of mass-production in the automobile industry, efficiency and innovation have been of upmost importance for companies wishing to be on the cutting-edge in this highly competitive business.  Aurora, Ontario-based automotive parts supplier Van-Rob Kirchhoff Automotive has found their competitive advantage in the Mitacs-Accelerate program.

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