Educating the Engineer of the Future campaign continues full steam ahead

Funding for the construction of the $88 million Engineering 7 building (E7) received a boost on January 12, 2017 with the announcement that the federal government is providing $32.6 million from its Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund, for the state-of-the-art engineering building at the University of Waterloo.

Now, Waterloo Engineering is focusing on raising the final $8 million of their Educating the Engineer of the Future campaign goals, says Pearl Sullivan, dean of the Faculty of Engineering at Waterloo.

Four areas of focus

“Engineering 7 is more than a building. It epitomizes the future of engineering education and the preparation of students to experience early, innovate early and incubate their ideas early, right from first year,” said Pearl Sullivan. “It will also be a meeting place for our industry partners, as well as entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, scholars and academics from around the world. E7 was one of the four focus areas for support in our Educating the Engineer of the Future campaign, along with enhancing student experience, supporting graduates and establishing chairs in emerging technologies.”


Home to growing biomedical and mechatronics engineering programs, as well as research on disruptive technologies including machine intelligence, mobile robotics, autonomous vehicles and wearable biomedical devices, Engineering 7  will be one of the largest buildings on campus when complete. An atrium and enclosed pedestrian bridges will link it to the existing Engineering 5 building.

Engineering Ideas Clinic

A focal point of Engineering 7, a seven-storey 240,000 sq. ft. building, is the Engineering Ideas Clinic ™ , a novel space allowing professors from different engineering disciplines to collectively teach theoretical concepts through experiential, hands-on learning. Waterloo Engineering’s 7,500 undergraduate students will use the facility.

The Engineering Ideas Clinic has struck a chord with alumni and industry supporters.

“The Engineering Ideas Clinic has struck a chord with alumni and industry supporters,” says Sanjeev Bedi, professor of Mechanical Engineering and director of the Engineering Ideas Clinic. “They immediately recognize that this model of real world teaching has never been done before – we’re connecting the digital and physical worlds, using the deep engineering knowledge our curriculum is known for. The students have embraced the activities and the aha! moments are thrilling to see. Supporting the construction of Engineering 7 and the Engineering Ideas Clinic will have an enormous impact on the innovation landscape in the Region of Waterloo and the nation.”

Ideas Clinic with water and sand pits.

Students will be able to test their theories and fulfill their aspirations in the Engineering Ideas Clinic. Connecting the physical and digital worlds, real world activities will give students a more thorough understanding of identifying, refining and solving difficult problems.

Engineering 7 under construction on Waterloo’s east campus with a scheduled opening in the spring of 2018. Watch E7 construction webcam.