What is Engineering? event introduces high school students to the world of engineering

By University Advancement and Communications Posted: November 12, 2019 8:15 a.m.

Almost 100 grade 10-12 students toured five labs focused on interactive hands-on activities in areas of: 1) Electronic Systems Engineering (ESE), 2) Software Systems Engineering (SSE), 3) Industrial Systems Engineering (ISE), 4) Environmental Systems Engineering (EVSE), and 5) Petroleum Systems Engineering (PSE).
Almost 100 grade 10-12 students toured five labs focused on interactive hands-on activities in areas of: 1) Electronic Systems Engineering (ESE), 2) Software Systems Engineering (SSE), 3) Industrial Systems Engineering (ISE), 4) Environmental Systems Engineering (EVSE), and 5) Petroleum Systems Engineering (PSE). Photo: University Advancement and Communications

Engineering is complex and careers can unfold in surprising ways. It’s not as direct as being an accountant, nurse, teacher, doctor, plumber or electrician. Two students with the same degree can end up in very different careers. What is common is curiosity and the desire to create new solutions for some of society’s pressing problems.

What is Engineering? is a long-standing event hosted by both the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan and is sponsored the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Saskatchewan (APEGS). With each university offering different engineering programs and degrees, they work together to present engineering to high school students throughout the province, ensuring prospective students are aware of all of the options available to them. This ensures that prospective students make the best informed decisions.

“The reason we have been hosting this event for so many years is to educate young people and their parents about the profession of engineering,” explains Dr. David deMontigny, U of R Associate Dean (Academic), Engineering.

Dr. Bruce Sparling, U of S Associate Dean (Academic), Engineering, agrees saying that, “The opportunity to meet potential students, tell them about what we do, and help them make informed decisions is very important.”

At this year’s What is Engineering? event on November 8, current U of R engineering students volunteered to be guides for prospective students touring them around to the lab sessions and presentations. It provided prospective students with the opportunity to talk with current students about engineering and the U of R. A similar event will take place at the U of S on November 15.

What is Engineering? introduces students to engineering. Offering interactive hands-on lab activities allows high

Fifteen current U of R engineering students volunteered as guides for the day touring students around the labs, answering questions, and sharing their own experiences of the University of Regina and the engineering program.

Fifteen current U of R engineering students volunteered as guides for the day touring students around the labs, answering questions, and sharing their own experiences of the University of Regina and the engineering program.

school students to experience engineering first-hand and understand what it is all about,” explains Melissa Barwald, Academic Advisor, Faculty of Engineering. “Students have the opportunity to build airplanes, boats, and engage in other engineering-related activities. This allows them to get a sense of what they might be interested in as a major.”

Ryann Strinja, a grade 12 student has always been interested in engineering and has been accepted into the U of R Faculty of Engineering. Attending the event today, she was able to tour all of the labs and explore the variety of engineering majors, allowing her to discover her areas of interest and what corresponding major she may choose.

“It’s a good opportunity to figure out what I want to do with the rest of my life,” shares Ryann. “As I sat through the labs and speakers and was asked if I could picture being an engineer - I thought, ‘Yes, I could.’ Today’s event helped me feel like I have made the right decision.”

About 40 parents joined in the day’s events to learn about career opportunities and ask questions about admissions, programs, and courses on behalf of their children.

“It is a big change from high school to university, and events like this provide a transition for high school students to break the ice and establish connections,” points out Lisa Strinja, Ryann’s mother. “Ryann gets to see some of the faces and places she will see when she attends the U of R. More importantly, attending the event today provides Ryann with the information she needs to pick for herself the program that is right for her.”