Kwantlen Polytechnic partners with Siemens for Mechatronics Certification Program

Tuesday September 20, 2016
Written by Manufacturing AUTOMATION
Kwantlen Polytechnic partners with Siemens for Mechatronics Certification Program
PHOTO: Kwantlen Polytechnic University
Sept. 20, 2016 - British Columbia’s Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) and Siemens Canada have announced a new collaboration aimed at accelerating implementation of Industry 4.0 advanced manufacturing concepts and addressing the technical skills gap in Canada.

Expected to begin early-to-mid 2017, the university will offer the Siemens Mechatronics Systems certification program in association with the Siemens Canada Engineering and Technology Academy (SCETA), which was established in 2014 and based out of Siemens Canada’s head office in Oakville, Ont. According to the parties, the “highly specialized” program is the first of its kind to be offered in B.C.

The university will also establish a mechatronics lab facility in Surrey, B.C. Located at its trades and technology campus in Cloverdale, the facility will serve as the training centre for students pursuing the Siemens Mechatronics Systems certification program.

“The manufacturing sector in Canada and globally is undergoing rapid and dramatic changes as industry enters the fourth industrial revolution – referred to as Industry 4.0 – which involves the mass adoption of digitization and advanced technologies. Manufacturing systems are becoming increasingly complex and digitalized and these systems require qualified highly-skilled individuals with the knowledge required to design, operate and maintain them,” said Siemens Canada in a statement.

“This agreement is a significant step forward for KPU as it implements its unique polytechnic university mandate. By partnering with Siemens, a world leader in engineering and manufacturing technology education, KPU reaffirms its commitment to a future-focused, high-quality and globally relevant advanced manufacturing training program,” said Dr. Salvador Ferreras, provost and vice president academic, KPU.

Equipment in the lab will include electrical and mechanical components purchased by KPU from approved suppliers, including Festo Didactic and programmable logic controllers (PLCs) from Siemens Canada. The addition of the lab will also set the foundation for future academic offerings at KPU, including a diploma in advanced manufacturing.

“Innovation, productivity and success for Canadian manufacturers are directly tied to the skills and abilities of their employees,” said Robert Hardt, president and CEO, Siemens Canada. “We are honoured to collaborate with KPU to bring mechatronics training to British Columbia, offering students the opportunity to pursue this globally recognized certification that will ultimately help prepare them to succeed in Canada’s top industries upon graduation.”

The Mechatronics certification courses, designed to be integrated into the school’s existing curriculum, will be offered to students in two levels and taught by KPU faculty trained at the Siemens Technik Academy in Berlin, Germany. Each level is based on a job profile — a “comprehensive description of the tasks that the certified individual should be able to perform.” Job profiles are developed by Siemens in collaboration with other industry and public sector partners, and help to define the levels, either assistant or associate.

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