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March 14, 2002 Conferences, friendly competition at Engineering Week



Building Bridges

Bridge building

Students attempt to put together a bridge that will be able to withstand the “Crusher.”

Students with alternative-fuels vehicle

Seen with the alternative-fuels vehicle they’re taking to an an inter-university competition in Detroit this spring are left to right, Jon Roger, Rudy Chang, Kharsan Mourtazov, and Tom Nguyen. Sitting in the vehicle is Frederick Guay.

Angela Yung, Mona Bosnakyan and Laine Roczniak, all high-school students at The Study, collaborate on a structure. They were among 75 participants in the Women in Engineering and Computer Science event held on March 4.

Photos by Andrew Dobrowolskyj

by Barbara Black

National Engineering Week was celebrated over two weeks at Concordia, as the Engineering and Computer Science Students Association (ECA) and its member associations staged a variety of events, ranging from fierce but friendly sports contests to a conference with the theme Design for Change.

The conference was called CUSEC, for Canadian Undergraduate Software Engineering Conference, and was co-sponsored by Microsoft Canada. It coincides with the graduation this term from Concordia of Quebec’s first software engineers.

There were four speakers from industry. Among the academic speakers were Concordia’s Peter Grogono, who discussed the demands put on teachers by the rapid evolution of software design, and Ahmed Seffah, on usability and involving the user early in software development.
Timothy C. Lethbridge, of the University of Ottawa, addressed software engineering as an emerging branch of engineering. W. Morven Gentleman, from Dalhousie University, talked about the need for software engineering to be multidisciplinary.

Jacob Slonim, also from Dalhousie, addressed issues that relate to the cognitively challenged. Slonim has embarked on a project to add a layer of computer architecture to increase accessibility, and is working with Alzheimer’s patients in his research.

The annual Women in Engineering and Computer Science Conference organized for young women from Montreal–area high schools was as lively as ever, and this year students organized a separate tour for Grade 4 students.

The popular Annual Concordia Bridge Building Competition (photo above, left) attracted 40 teams this year. Displays by the Society of Automotive Engineers and other student groups filled the atrium of the library complex and the mezzanine. On March 9, students celebrated the best of academic and student life with their football tournament, followed by the annual awards banquet at the Molson Brewery.

Still to come, April 9, the RoboWars robotics competition. The Web site is http://ieee.concordia.ca/robowars.