Posted on January 27, 2016

Why ECE may be the right choice for you

Danny, Dominique and Chris

CHOOSING ECE: Danny Lloyd, Dominque Dufresne, Chris Lawrynuik are building an RC car with predictive suspension for their fourth-year ECE design project.

Hundreds of first-year Queen’s general engineering students gathered in Walter Light Hall, Jan 26, for First-Year Discipline Night hosted by the department of electrical and computer engineering (ECE).  It was a chance for new students, who are about to choose their engineering disciplines, to learn more about ECE, meet faculty and upper-year students, see some interesting fourth-year ECE projects and nosh on free pizza.

So why do ECE students choose ECE?

“I was originally going into math and engineering and I decided that I liked the more hands-on robotics-type projects,” says fourth-year ECE student Dominque Dufresne. “I’ve done a lot of that in the past and really enjoyed it, so I joined this stream and learned a lot of technical things that fit well with the work I’m doing with the military.”

ECE offers students excellent employment prospects after graduation.

“I knew I liked math and the job field is wide open when we get out of school,” adds fourth-year ECE student Chris Lawrynuik. “I’ve enjoyed the summer jobs I’ve had so far. Last summer I worked for an airport electrical design company. I was all over the place: Pearson, Hamilton, Quebec for a bit.”


SHOOTING A YOUIE: Acting Department Head Professor, Shahram Yousefi, greets students by making a crowd picture at the ECE First-Year Discipline Night on January 26.

ECE provides a strong foundation of skills to apply in other sectors, too.

“Last summer I worked on my own start-up,” says fourth-year ECE student Danny Lloyd.  “ECE general is really good for that because it gives you a solid amount of skills to apply in an entrepreneurial setting. It’s really important to have some coding background because most start-ups will be open to you."

Dufresne, Lawrynuik and Lloyd are working on their fourth-year design project together and were at the ECE First-Year Discipline Night to chat with students and show off progress on their project. They’re building an RC car with predictive suspension. Sensors on the front of the car pass data through a Raspberry Pi to Firgelli linear actuators in the suspension that adjust the heights of each wheel depending on surface conditions down the roadway. Imagine a car that can see upcoming bumps and potholes and lift one or more of its wheels just in time and just long enough to skip over while keeping the chassis flat and the ride smooth. That’s what these ECE students are building and it’s just one of the interesting projects on display at ECE First Year Discipline Night.


FOOD FOR THOUGHT: First-year general engineering students enjoy a pizza break at the ECE First-Year Discipline Night.

For more information on ECE, its programs and people visit its website and Why ECE page.