Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic
Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic

Saskatchewan Polytechnic unveils new Design and Manufacturing Engineering Technology program name, mechatronics courses

Curriculum updates and program name change to benefit engineering technology students

A wider variety of employment opportunities, a broad, desirable skillset and integration of advanced technologies – these are just a few reasons the CAD/CAM Engineering Technology program at Saskatchewan Polytechnic has undergone a name change and curriculum update. This includes a new mechatronics stream which ties electronics, programming, mechanical design and manufacturing together. First year students entering the program in fall 2020 will be the first to graduate under the new program name, Design and Manufacturing Engineering Technology.

To better reflect the program, a name change was necessary. Many people identified the CAD/CAM program as simply a CAD drafting program but according to Tim Muench, program head, Design and Manufacturing Engineering Technology, the program offers “a much broader engineering base and advanced technologies that are used, which make our grads very desirable to employers.” He also notes that the change identifies that graduates are designers with the engineering fundamentals to go with design, “they are also capable of using many advanced technologies and programming automated manufacturing equipment to turn designs into finished prototypes and products.”

Along with the program name change, the curriculum has also been updated to include a mechatronics stream. “This stream integrates all of the areas beginning with mechanical design, through programming, electronics, embedded controllers and manufacturing, with an integrated project that spans the entire range of these courses,” Muench adds.

Mechatronics specialists create simpler, smarter systems that aim to be a step ahead of future technology. Mechatronics systems range from smart consumer products with touch screens and moving parts to industrial CNC machines and other custom automation systems. Custom mechatronic systems can provide manufacturers with a low cost method of producing parts and products to compete with low cost versions produced off-shore.

Design and Manufacturing Engineering Technology is the first program at Sask Polytech with a fully integrated mechatronics stream. “We’re excited to offer new mechatronics programming to our engineering students. This multidisciplinary field is growing rapidly and with its focus on developing technologies of the future, we felt it was an important area for our students to gain hands-on experience in,” says Jamie Hilts, dean for the School of Mining, Energy and Manufacturing.

Although the program has always provided students with a strong, broad skillset in engineering technology, these important changes will allow graduates to be recognized as designers with skills in advanced technologies, giving them the opportunity to choose from a wide variety of employment opportunities and making them even more desirable to employers.

ABOUT DESIGN AND MANUFACTURING ENGINEERING TECHNOLOGY

Design and Manufacturing Engineering Technology is a two-year diploma offered at Sask Polytech, Saskatoon Campus. Develop the knowledge and skills you need to put computer and engineering principles to work. The manufacturing field is full of opportunities. You could work in engineering design, drafting, quality control, and programming and operating CNC machines. Learn more about the Design and Manufacturing Engineering Technology diploma