Student Successes

Talk to any Lakehead University engineering graduate and you will hear good news. They are proud to be Lakehead engineering graduates because of their engineering abilities. You will find Lakehead engineering graduates working nationally and internationally as principles and partners in engineering firms, managers for mega-projects, and even on Formula One racing teams. Below is a sample of our engineering students' accomplishments.

Lakehead’s Civil Engineering Student Steel Bridge teams consistently rank well at the AISC/ASCE U.S. National Student Steel Bridge Competition (NSSBC). Our 2011 team competed in the 20th annual NSSBC at Texas A & M University and took home the title. They continued Lakehead’s strong track record and winning tradition by placing first overall, as well as first in the categories of construction speed, lightness, and efficiency. The 2011 Steel Bridge Team is the first Canadian team to win first place in the history of the NSSBC.

2011 Lakehead’s Steel Bridge Team
©Daniela Weaver Photography

In 2002 Lakehead’s all-women’s team of Civil Engineering students placed 2nd at U.S. Nationals out of more than 180 North American universities competing in the 20 regional competitions.

2002 Lakehead’s all-women’s Steal Bridge team

The final year degree project of a Civil Engineering student won second place in the 2007 Canadian Geotechnical Society (CGS) Undergraduate Report - Individual Competition. The first place in the 2009 (CGS) Undergraduate Report Competition was awarded to three Lakehead engineering graduates.

Lakehead University Chemical Engineering students won in both 2014 and 2015 the annual SNC-Lavalin Undergraduate Plant Design Competition hosted by the Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering (CSChE). Our 2014 team designed a hydrogen plant using a new process to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 28% compared to existing plants. The 2015 winning team designed a chemical plant that converted 200,000 metric tons per year of waste plastic into high value hydrocarbons, including gasoline and kerosene. Our CSChE Student Chapter was the recipient of the CSChE Student Chapter Merit Award in 2009, an award they won on 7 occasions. The award is given in recognition of initiative and originality in Student Chapter programming. In addition, two of our Chemical Engineering students were selected to participate in the Canadian Mineral Processors Conference held in Ottawa in January 2013.

Lakehead engineering students are involved in new and exciting initiatives. In 2014 Mechanical Engineering students designed and fabricated a human powered vehicle. Our students placed 5th overall and ranked first of all Canadian University entries at the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Human Powered Vehicle Challenge (HPVC). The 2014 HPVC West  competition was hosted by the Santa Clara University, California. A team of Mechanical Engineering students designed and built a radio controlled plane. They competed in the 2015 SAE Aero Design West Regular Class Design Competition against 41 teams from all over the world. Our team placed 25th overall and 5th among all the Canadian entries.

Four Year 3 Lakehead Engineering students won the 2018 Canadian Engineering Competition in Senior Design. The team designed and built a miniature prototype of a fire truck that could race to a flaming building and accurately deploy water bombs at multiple locations. The robot, operated through a wireless controller, had to navigate a 3D cardboard "city" without leaving the road, then extinguish simulated flames by launching ping-pong balls into openings cut into buildings at various heights and angles. In a competition against seven other schools, the apparatus gave the Lakehead team top prize in the Senior Design category. The teams went into the National competition without any previous knowledge of the problem. They had a total of eight hours to solve the problem and create their winning solution.

Four Year 3 Lakehead Engineering students won the 2018 Canadian Engineering Competition in Senior Design.

Using the new Engineering Makerspace, two Electrical Engineering students placed third in Innovative Design at the 2017 Ontario Engineering Competition for their "Graphene Super Capacitor" degree project. They were awarded the Technical Excellence Award at the competition. This discretionary award is presented to an innovative team whose project demonstrates exceptional technical skill and expertise relative to their peers. They also won the 2017 Young Innovator of the Year at the 9th Annual RBC Northwestern Ontario Innovation Awards. Their graphene-based supercapacitor was selected for funding by Highway1, a Silicon Valley hardware start-up accelerator.

A team of two Electrical Engineering students from Lakehead University won the 2014 IEEE Canada Student Paper Competition for the paper “A Novel Analog-Digital Hybrid Synthesizer Sequencer Design” based on their final year project. Our students placed third in the IEEE 2011 Industry Applications Society Myron Zucker Undergraduate Student Design Contest for their project "Maglev Vertical Axis Wind Turbine". Lakehead students won the IEEE-TELUS Innovation Award in 2005, and also received the IEEE 2005 Life Member Award for the best student paper in Western Canada for their work “Stabilization of an Inverted Pendulum on a Mobile Robot”.

Our Mechanical Engineering students won second place in the HVAC system design category of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) 2011 Student Design Project Competition.

Three teams of Lakehead’s Mechanical Engineering students competed at the 27th Ontario Engineering Competition (OEC) in February, 2006. All won awards; first place in the Engineering Communications category for the presentation “MicroCHP Applications of Modern Stirling Engines”, second place in Entrepreneurial Design for the project “Composite Leaf Springs” and third in Senior Design. Two of our teams qualified to compete at the Canadian Engineering Competition (CEC) in March, 2006. “MicroCHP Applications of Modern Stirling Engines” was awarded first place in the Engineering Communications category at this prestigious national competition which featured 150 engineering students and 22 Canadian universities.

A 2006 Canadian Engineering Memorial Foundation (CEMF) Undergraduate Scholarship was awarded to a Lakehead University Mechanical Engineering student. Her presentation “Earth-Friendly Engineering” was featured at Lakehead University’s 2006 Go Eng Girl! event. Go Eng Girl! 2008 featured “Engineering our Water” by a Lakehead Chemical Engineering student, winner of the 2008 CEMF AMEC Aboriginal Undergraduate Scholarship.

Lakehead’s Formula SAE® team competes annually at the Formula SAE® Michigan Competition at the Michigan International Speedway. Our 2009 team won the William C. Mitchell Rookie Award competing against 120 teams from Europe, Asia, South America, and North America. Our 2010 team placed 5th among all the Canadian University entrants. In 2015, our team placed 57th overall and ranked 6th among all the Canadian University entries.

2009 Formula SAE race car
Our Software Engineering graduates are in demand, and our students compete with the best! A recent graduate has been appointed Account Manager with an international company within one year of graduation. Fourth-year students competed against 14 other finalists in the Ontario Centres for Excellence (OCE) Discovery 2011 Connections Competition in May 2011.