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MacEngineer

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VOLUME 28

FACULTY OF ENGINEERING

NUMBER 1

MCMASTER UNIVERSITY

Innovation and Entrepreneurship See page 5

APRIL 2003


A message from the Dean Creating a new school for Engineering Practice

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s part of McMaster University’s culture of innovation and discovery, and building on the Faculty of Engineering’s interdisciplinary approaches and on its ability to develop collaborative partnerships with industry, business and government we are about to embark on a number of new programs. Engineering researchers play an important role in the Canadian economy. They are increasingly being asked to create new technologies to help Canadian industries remain competitive in a global marketplace. At the same time, there is a growing demand for policyfocused research to ensure that new technologies benefit society. To continue to attract the best and brightest students, we need to continuously upgrade and introduce new and relevant educational and research programs that meet societal needs.

inside this issue Alumni Profiles .......................4 Walter Booth ..........................5 Golf Tournament ..................16 Alumni Weekend ..................20 Hey Alumni! Have you got something to say, or any other news? We would like to hear from you. Contact Carm Vespi: Tel: (905) 525-9140 ext. 24906 Fax: (905) 546-5492 e-mail: vespi@mcmaster.ca website: www.eng.mcmaster.ca

To meet these needs, the Faculty is creating the School for Engineering Practice, as a focal point for its professional graduate programs. The new school will be comprised of three new research centres offering various professional degree programs. A leadership gift was received from alumnus Walter G. Booth to create the first endowed chair in the Centre of Engineering Entrepreneurship and Innovation – The Walter G. Booth Chair in Engineering Entrepreneurship and Innovation. The Chair will focus on a new Master’s program that will provide graduate students with the opportunity to study/develop innovative approaches for the transfer of engineering ideas into new business enterprises. The other two centres are the Centre for Engineering and Public Policy and the Centre for Engineering Design. In addition, the Faculty is also creating a new and innovative Biomedical Engineering program. The initial focus will be in Electrical and Biomedical Engineering. The proposed program will lead to a 5-year combined Master’s (M.Eng.), 4-year Bachelor (B.Eng.) degree in Electrical and Biomedical Engineering, or after the 3-year qualification for a premed program. These programs and research centres build on McMaster’s interdisciplinary strengths and will position McMaster at the forefront of a new era in engineering.

Mo Elbestawi, Dean of Engineering

To create the infrastructure needed for the new research centres and education programs, the Faculty is embarking on a major initiative to fund a new engineering building that will have state-of-the art facilities for students, faculty and researchers. The design of the building will promote interdisciplinary, across department, education and research in the areas described earlier. The design of the building will incorporate environmental considerations. There are many opportunities for your involvement in this historic project. Please visit our website at www.eng.mcmaster.ca.

Mo Elbestawi

The MacEngineer welcomes your comments... Send your news and views to the editor at vespi@mcmaster.ca

The MacEngineer is published by the Engineering Faculty for its alumni. Distribution assistance is provided by the Alumni Office.

On the cover…

Publication Number 40063416

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Walter Booth poses in front of the John Hodgins Engineering Bulding. Photo by Ron Scheffler

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A message from the Associate Dean Making way for the double cohort

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his year, there will be two high school classes graduating at the same time because of the abolition of the former Grade 13. The consequences of this Double Cohort have been widely reported in the media lately. Many of our alumni have children who are part of this group and are justifiably concerned about their chances of being admitted to university. I would therefore like to take this opportunity to describe some of the steps that we have taken and our plans for this year’s admission process. A record total of 101,668 students applied to the Ontario Universities Application Centre by the deadline, an increase of 46.7% over January 2002. McMaster University has seen an increase in applications of over 95% from last year. First choice applicants are up 51%, second choices are up by 59%, and third-choices are up by 52%. These numbers exceed the projections by the Ontario government, and negotiations are under way to find ways of increasing the capacity of Ontario universities for this year. Within the Faculty of Engineering, we have been preparing for the Double Cohort for some years. Many of you will recall the days, not so long ago, when Level 1 enrol-

ment was about 400 students. In response to the ever increasing demand for our programmes, in addition to the need to prepare for the Double Cohort students, we have gradually increased the number of students admitted into Level 1 to 750. As a result, the number of students in the Faculty has grown from about 1,300 to over 2,500. It should be noted that this increase in enrolment has not been at the expense of minimum admission standards, which have gone up in each of the past five years. To accommodate these students, we have had to increase the number of sections offered in many courses, we have increased the class size in others, we have expanded our laboratory facilities, we have renovated and occupied the old Teacher’s College (now the Information Technology Building), and we have hired a large number of new faculty members and staff. We are now essentially at full capacity, and are unable to increase enrolment further without compromising the quality of our programmes. This will make admission decisions particularly difficult this year. As you probably know, the number of offers of admission that we make to applicants in the spring of every year is based on the expectation that a certain percentage of the offers will be

Dr. Peter Smith, Associate Dean of Engineering

accepted. This year’s circumstances, however, put into question the validity of any prior statistics, and projections on acceptances rates will be subject to considerable uncertainty. The next few months will therefore be challenging times, both for us and for our future students. You can be assured, however, that throughout the admissions process, we will do our utmost to ensure that every applicant is treated fairly.

New Associate Dean No Stranger to McMaster The Faculty of Engineering appointed Peter Smith to the Office of Associate Dean, effective Dec. 1, 2002. He replaces Philip Wood who accepted the position of associate vice-president, Student Affairs at McMaster. Smith has been acting associate dean in the Faculty since Wood’s departure on July 1. McMaster has been Smith’s home for the past 25 years. Originally from Brazil, he was in the first class to receive the B.Eng.Mgt. degree in computer engineering and management, in 1983. He stayed at McMaster to complete his M.Eng. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering, in 1985 and 1988, respectively. In 1987 he joined the University’s Department of

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Electrical and Computer Engineering. Smith brings to the office a broad perspective and interest on issues that affect undergraduate students in engineering. He was director of Engineering 1 at McMaster between 1996 and 1999, during a period of rapid expansion to the undergraduate engineering program. He was the student activities chair for the Canadian Region of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) between 1995 and 1997, and has participated in numerous other studentfocus programs and activities. “Dr. Smith is truly an exceptional educator and scholar who has gained the respect of the engineering student body,”

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said Mo Elbestawi, Dean of Engineering. “He is extremely qualified to provide the necessary leadership for our undergraduate engineering program.” Smith is one of the leading experts worldwide on surface acoustic wave (SAW) devices, a subject on which he has co-authored more than 50 peer-reviewed publications and for which he was awarded the R. A. Ross Medal by the Engineering Institute of Canada. He has provided leadership as head of the Microwave Acoustics Laboratory at McMaster since 1989. He is a senior member of the IEEE and a member of the Association of Professional Engineers of Ontario.

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Alumni profiles Successful Grad Combines Roles of Mom and Senior Management

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ince graduating from McMaster with a B.Eng Mgmt (Comp.Eng.& Management, ’83) and an MBA (Marketing, ’86), Cheryl Giblon has led a busy life. Academically, she went on to obtain a Ph.D. in marketing at York University (’95), and has taught marketing and MIS courses part-time at both the University of Toronto and York University. Cheryl’s professional career has included work as systems analyst, but her main focus has been on sales and marketing. She has held positions in both Canadian and American firms including Garrett Canada (now Honeywell), Weidmuller Limited, Bell Sygma, Compaq Canada and ATI Technologies Inc. Prior to her current position, she was Vice President of Marketing for Canada and the Director of Marketing for the Americas Region for Borland Software. Today, she is Executive Vice President, Marketing, Engineering and Operations for Stetron International Inc, having been promoted in 2002 from her position as Vice President, Marketing. Stetron is a provider of electronic components and solutions specializing in loudspeakers, thermistors, varistors and relays for the telecom, multimedia, automotive and industrial control sectors. Cheryl works out of the company’s Markham, Ontario office and lives in Thornhill. But work is not all office time! “On August 30, 2002, I appeared on CTV National News, in a business segment on Stetron’s growth in a down market. The clip is at www.stetron.com.”

Rebecca, on the left, and sister Melissa, sharing a hug.

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On the personal side, she and husband Andrew celebrated their tenth anniversary in July 2002. They have three children: Rebecca (5), Melissa (3) and Joel (14 months). In addition to the typical family responsibilities, Cheryl is taking piano lessons along with Rebecca and very much enjoying it. “I remember when I was a kid I used to try to avoid practicing and now that I am an adult, I can’t find enough time to do it!” The girl’s other activities – ballet, sportball and swimming lessons – tend to keep this family on the run.

Cheryl Giblon (left) with husband Andrew and their son Joel.

As for Joel: “He is already saying a few words (and the word “more” seems to be a favorite!), has just started to walk, and has a great laugh.”

Al-Riaz Adatia – entrepreneur, inventor & humanitarian

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lumnus Al-Riaz Adatia, Computer ’93, might be forgiven for thinking that his engineering degree was his ticket to fame and fortune. No matter how you look at it, he has definitely led an interesting – and successful – life. One of Canada’s current young business leaders, Al-Riaz built his professional career in California’s Silicon Valley working at such prestigious companies as Octel, ST Microelectronics (SGS Thompson) and Microsoft. His computer engineering background has led him to many cutting edge and consumer-focused projects including development of drivers at ST Microelectronics for use on set top boxes, sound drivers for Microsoft’s Pocket PC reference platform, an AC-3 decoder shipped with Windows NT Soft DVD, and USB drivers for Fingerprint recognition Al-Riaz’s expertise eventually led him into teaching. At 24, he was the youngest teacher in the University of California Santa Cruz Extension program, and the following year he was not only able to have the course accredited for certification, but he was also able to start teaching his courses at UC Berkeley. During this time, he founded Ustad, a teaching and consulting practice. Ustad developed and presented private courses for companies such as Microsoft, SGI, Apple and HAL. Most courses

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required a prerequisite of 10 years of engineering experience, and were considered the most sought after courses in the Valley. The young entrepreneur has also been involved with multiple startups Al-Riaz Adatia including Flash Of Lightening (a Commandsoft and Microsoft joint venture), Rhetorex and, in 1998, Mediascience. He was one of three founders of Mediascience, the company which developed the much-acclaimed MP3 player Sonique. Al-Riaz led the team as CEO, CTO and most notably as “Chief Evangelist”, speaking at industry conferences in both the technical arena (SDMI) and in the music field along side Chuck D (Public Enemy), Prince and other musicians. At its peak, Sonique was the second most popular MP3 player on the Internet, was in the top 5 of all downloads on CNET in 1999, and was voted the number one player by WebNoize. The product generated three patent applications, of which AlRiaz is co-inventor of two. In 1999, he led Mediascience through its continued on page 15 N

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New research chair fosters innovation & entrepreneurship

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cMaster alumnus and Woodstock businessman Walter G. Booth has made a donation of $1 million to support the creation of a new research chair in the Faculty of Engineering. The Walter G. Booth Chair in Engineering Entrepreneurship and Innovation is part of the proposed Centre for Engineering Entrepreneurship and Innovation. The Centre will focus on methods of commercializing new engineering ideas and technical expertise. Engineering Dean Mo Elbestawi said Booth’s generosity will help the Faculty to continue building on its strengths as a student-centred and research-intensive institution, as well as its commitment to taking an innovative approach to engineering. “The chair will have a managerial focus that emphasizes the creation of new business through innovative, opportunity-oriented management,” said Elbestawi. “This is generally recognized as a major driving force for growth in the Canadian economy.” Booth is Chairman and CEO of the Timberland Group, a group of three companies that specialize in winching and hoisting products that are sold around the world. He graduated from McMaster with a bachelor of engineering in mechanical engineering in 1962 and obtained his master’s in engineering in 1965. He noted that the gift is his way of say-

Booth did not have his Grade 13. When he decided to obtain a university education, only McMaster, under the guidance of Dean Hodgins, agreed to accept him. “(Hodgins) took a chance on me at the time when it was pretty important to me,” he said. Booth kept in touch with Professor Siddall after he graduated with his bachelor’s degree and it was Siddall who encouraged him to apply for a Ford Foundation Scholarship and return to McMaster to study for his master’s degree in engineering. “I studied for a year under Jim Siddall and he was a great mentor who guided me through the master ’s degree program. He instilled in me a love of engineering and its application to industry.” McMaster University President Peter George lauded the establishment of the endowed chair as a generous investment in the future of outstanding teaching and research in the engineering faculty. “Mr. Booth’s generosity and vision allows the University to pursue an exciting area in engineering studies,” said President George. “It contributes in a significant way to McMaster’s ability to deliver exceptional educational opportunities and research in the area of engineering entrepreneurship and ensures our students continue to be in the forefront of teaching and scholarship in this vitally important area.”

Walter G. Booth

ing thanks to two McMaster professors, former engineering dean Jack Hodgins and Jim Siddall. Both, he said, were instrumental in his academic life. “Both men took a chance on me at crucial times in my life, and entrepreneurship and innovation are about taking chances and taking risks. I see the need in our own organization and in Canada for this type of engineering person who has an entrepreneurial bent and strength.” Although a graduate of Ryerson’s threeyear mechanical technology program,

Dan Olsen – working for change

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ourth-year civil engineering and management student Dan Olsen is not only working towards his degree. He’s working on helping to change the world for the better. It was during his second year at McMaster that he became interested in international work. “I was looking for more from school than money and a job or career.” His thoughts focused on the problems of the world and what he might be able to do about them. Olsen joined Engineers Without Borders (EWB), an organization that focuses on improving the quality of life of people in developing nations and communities by helping find appropriate technical solutions to their challenges. Currently, Olsen is working through EWB with a rural development agency in India to M

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design a rainwater harvesting system in the Nilgiris district. The project is also his fourth-year independent study work. He explains that the stream that supplies water to the 22 families in the village of Tamal Nadu runs Dan Olsen dry several months of the year. The challenge is to ensure there is water all year round. One solution might be to harvest the rainwater from the straw and adobe rooftops of the villagers’ homes. Another is to build a rock and earth dam. To help find a viable solution to the water shortage, Olsen plans to apply to the Canadian U

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International Development Agency (CIDA) for a grant to enable a EWB member to work in India on the project. The president of McMaster’s student Civil Engineering Society ,Olsen, 23, is no stranger to such problems. He has travelled to Bolivia, Nicaragua and Mexico for the past three summers to help the underprivileged in orphanages and assist in the building of new homes. His first experience was with an organization called Global Youth Network. He spent a summer working in an orphanage in Bolivia as part of a group of students under the leadership of Leslie Williams, a McMaster nursing student. The experience transformed him. The following summer, Olsen and Williams took a group of youths from continued on page 11 T

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Engineering Alumnus Finds Success in DotCom Company

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eter Della-Nebbia (Civil, 1984) is justly proud of The Learning Continuum Company Ltd., an on-line enterprise he co-founded in 1997. “We are a dot com survivor,” he says, in reference to the many Internet-based businesses that have not experienced staying power over the last few years. The Learning Continuum (www.tlcc.com) offers training in computer programming. Courses on Java, JavaScript, LotusScript and WebSphere are marketed on-line and purchased by those interested via credit card over the Internet. The “student” downloads the course and works through it at his own pace. “It’s an interesting business,” company president Della-Nebbia muses. Almost everything – from marketing to providing answers to student queries – is done through the Internet. “Our course developers are from all over: Hawaii, India, England, the United States and Canada. And my partner lives in Florida.” He works out of his home in Hamilton, Ontario. Offering computer programming courses to the world seems a bit removed from the civil engineering skills he developed while at

McMaster. An aptitude for math and sciences propelled him towards the engineering programme in the first place, and Della-Nebbia now says it was the right choice. “Engineering gave me the ability to learn and to learn quickly” – an asset in today’s fastpaced, ever-changing IT industry, he adds. When he graduated, he was offered two job opportunities – each with quite different possibilities. He could use his engineering skills at Petro Canada, designing and building stations, or he could join IBM and become immersed in the growing information technology industry. The IBM offer appealed as more exciting and appeared to offer a good future, so he took the chance. If he has one regret about McMaster engineering, it’s the fact that he did not take the engineering and management program. “It would have been a help to me, especially in establishing my IBM career.” His eight years at IBM reinforced another lesson gleaned from university – learning is a life-long venture. “Learning is continuous. It doesn’t end with the degree and graduation.” Della-Nebbia has many fond memories of his time at McMaster, from the events dur-

Peter Della-Nebbia (far right) with his family (left to right) Lance age 17, wife Kathy, Kayla age 5 and Tyler age 8.

ing Orientation Week to the writings found in The Plumbline. The best, however, was the football games he helped organize on the lawn in front of the Engineering building between mechanical and civil engineering students. “I really liked those football games … civil engineers usually won!” Married with three children, Della-Nebbia and the family enjoy travel and camping – two activities he hopes to do more often, just as soon as he can get into some high-tech mobile technology capabilities.

Dan Priljeva – an emerging entrepreneur

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inancial analyst Dan Priljeva strikes you as a person who thinks methodically, plans in detail and acts with conviction. These are attributes that are most likely highly regarded by his current employer, CIBC’s commercial banking division. However, they also feature in the story of how and why this mechanical engineering grad (’99) has become an emerging entrepreneur. In early January, 2003, Priljeva, along with partners Dragoslav Culum (EE.& Mgmt ’00) and Sasa Bosnjak (CompEng ‘99) won a $1,000 start-up award from the Michael G. DeGroote School of Business for a business management product developed by their company, Mission84 Networks. Designed to be an advanced inventory management tool, called the Item Tracking Network (ITN), the product provides “real time balance and location capabilities, offering 100 per cent inventory control,” Priljeva explains. It resolves the capacity and accuracy issues related to

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tracking technologies currently available, making it particularly useful in large retail businesses. Most importantly, “it doesn’t cannibalize existing systems, but works with them to provide high quality data.” In other words, a comDan Priljeva pany would not have to discard an existing system in order to take advantage of the product’s capabilities. By winning the Business School’s Campus Incubator Business Plan Challenge, the product has been given a vote of confidence, Priljeva says. “It’s a confirmation that the judges (who are business people and entrepreneurs) believe in the proposal, and feel that we have a good idea and a good team working on it.” The business advantages are huge. “Imagine knowing with 100 per cent accuracy the true inventory balance and location c

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of every item in a warehouse, and being able to plan production and sales based on this knowledge. The efficiencies at hand create real economic gains and provide visibility across the supply chain.” Despite his current ease with businessspeak, it was probably inevitable that Priljeva chose engineering after graduating from high school. His marks were strongest in the maths and sciences, and his sister Michelle (’98) was already enrolled in engineering at McMaster – and liking it! In addition, it seemed to him that engineering was “more practical than the pure sciences”. After completing his engineering degree, he went straight into the MBA program, also at McMaster, graduating in 2001. He doesn’t regret the decision not to take the combined engineering and management program, and is pleased with the way everything has worked out. “At the time I wanted to concentrate on the pure tech courses. It was a good foundation.” It was continued on page 13 N

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Engineering Faculty and Alumni Help Build Better Homes

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he Threshold School of Building is a new venture that provides practical house building education to the general public. With a $29,000 grant from the Young Fund to do some development work and a $75,000 pilot grant from the Hamilton Community Foundation, a group of engineers, designers, carpenters and teachers group launched the year-long pilot project in August 2002. The start-up grants are enabling the group to open the school, provide courses, and do an affordable housing project. By having some of the instruction take place in the context of affordable and sustainable housing in north Hamilton, the ini-

tiative is helping improve Hamilton’s housing situation, says Bob Hudspith, president of the group and associate professor of mechanical engineering. “As people gain the knowledge, skills and confidence to participate in the design, construction and maintenance of their own homes they are in a better position to contribute to a more sustainable community,” he says. “The affordable housing projects that form one component of the education will address a growing need in Hamilton.” In addition to meeting with local agencies such as Mission Services of Hamilton, The Good Shepherd Centre, Welcome Inn

and Habitat for Humanity, four of the members of the group visited Minneapolis to study The Project for Pride in Living. Threshold opened its doors to students in January 2003. McMaster faculty and alumni involved in the school include political science professor Barbara Carroll, who serves as vice-president; engineering alumni Josh Abush, Graham Lobban and Kurt Frost; arts and science and humanities alumnus Andrew Copp, and psychology alumnus Jack Santa Barbara. For more information or to register for a course, visit the Threshold Web site at www.thresholdschool.ca

McMaster Racing Club to compete in Michigan

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s the school year comes to an end, the McMaster Racing Club gears up for spring and summer design and construction. Our chassis division is learning the ropes of finite element analysis so they can build and test the frame on the computer, and the engine division has designed a new throttle valve, and continues the search for that elusive perfect engine. During the summer, the team plans to complete much of the design work and also begin construction of some components of the car. Also, the team would like to take part in some driver training programs to be more competitive with drivers from other schools who have professional racing experience. The McMaster Racing Club Formula SAE Team (MRC) designs and builds an open-wheel Formula-style race car, which must conform to stringent specifications, established by the Society of Automotive Engineers. Over 150 schools compete in three annual competitions that are held around the world: Formula SAE in Pontiac, Michigan USA, Formula Student in Leicester, England, and Formula Australasia in Carrum Downs, Victoria Australia. The 2002 car can outperform most production cars with 0-100km/h times in the 4-second range, as well as awesome 1.4 g lateral acceleration. Weighing in around 500 pounds, and outfitted with an 86hp 600cc motorcycle engine this car is a serious performer. For the next car, our aim is to drop the weight, raise the horsepower using a turbocharger, and improve on the already incredible suspension. M

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Team Captain Matt Bigger, Mechanical Engineering and Management ’01 competing in Leicester, England 2002.

If you would like to know more about the McMaster Racing Club and what we do, please e-mail team captain Julius Bago at sae@mcmaster.ca. You can also view our webpage from its temporary location:

msw.mcmaster.ca/~mrc. The team is currently seeking sponsorship at all levels. To join this great team contact sponsorship director Jesse Webster at websteja@mcmaster.ca.

Engineering Alumni... Join our Engineering Alumni E-mail Database http://www.eng.mcmaster.ca/engalumni/ just for ENGINEERS! This is a great opportunity to keep in touch with your fellow classmates. Check out McMaster Alumni Association’s new on-line McMaster @lumni Community http://www.mcmaster.ca/ua/ U

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Successful alumni night

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n February 27th, the Engineerring Advisory Committee hosted a gettogether in Toronto entitled “Inspiring Innovation & Discovery”. The following Committee members were in attendance to meet and greet attendees: Pat Stevens, Chemical ’80 (Chair) Carlos Escalante, Civil ’98 Len King, Civil ’72 Susan Laughton, Chemical ’95 Romeo Palombella, Civil ’73 David Ryan, Social Sciences ’99 Stephen Veldhuis, Mechanical & Mgt. ’90 Appropriately, the event was held at the Ontario Science Centre in north Toronto. Following a buffet supper, over 40 area alumni were welcomed by Pat Stevens, chair, Engineering Advisory Committee. University President Dr. Peter George was also present and brought warm greetings to the gathered alumni. Keynote Speaker Mo Elbestawi, Dean, Faculty of Engineering, gave an inspiring and informative talk on “Innovation in Engineering Education at McMaster University”. The evening concluded with ample time for meeting and mingling with colleagues and old friends. Many thanks to the following for helping to “show the Mac spirit in TO”: Elena Shusterman, Manufacturing ’02 Carlo Odoardi, Electrical ’86 Dave Manning, Computer Eng. & Management ’00 Mark Stevens, Chemical ’80 Kristie Schweinbenz, Mechanical Eng. & Mgt. ’98 Robert Wunsche, Metallurgical ’96 Sukhpal Dhillon, Computer ’02 Munish Prasher, Electrical ’02 Vadim Nechadim, Engineering Physics ’01 Nizar Amarsi, Mechanical ’01 Al Pirbhai, Computer Engineering and Mgt. ’01 Tony Colenbrander, Engineering Physics ’66 John Colenbrander, Mechanical Eng. & Society ’02 Jim McEwen, Civil Eng. & Mgt. ’78 Mary Byrne, Civil Eng. & Mgt. ’93 David Rogers, M.Eng.(Mechanical) ’93 Mikhail Ali, Mechanical ’93

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Anita Heikkila, Chemical ’80 Bill Heikkila, Chemical & Mgt. ’80 Nino Balbaa, Mechanical ’93 Bret Ida, Mechanical ’93 Brian Jay, Electrical ’94 Randy Showalter, Electrical & Mgt. ’02 Sarah Masih, Mechanical ’01 Michael Delsey, Civil ’74 Suzanne Beale, Civil Eng. & Mgt. ’88 Roy Verstraeta, Chemical ’70 Gary Macro, Civil ’73 Enno Agur, Chemical M.Eng. ’78, Ph.D. ’82 Herve Lacheray, M.Eng. Mechanical ’01 Dave Reeds, Civil Eng. & Mgt. ’81 Sushee Perumal, Computer Eng. & Mgt. ’02 Will McCrae, Civil ’86 Jude Ragel, Manufacturing ’01

Dr. Brian Latto, Emeritus, Mechanical Engineering Steve Karan, Commerce ’02 Brian Pho, Chemical Eng. & Society ’02 Bill Holly, Chemical ’88 John Richmond, Chemical Engineering ’74 Mark Ottensmeyer, Mechanical Eng. & Mgt. ’94 Dr. Peter George, President and ViceChancellor Dr. Mo Elbestawi, Mechanical M. Eng. ’76, Ph.D. ’80, Dean of Engineering Terry Milson, Faculty Advancement Officer, Humanities ’78 Carm Vespi, Engineering Alumni Officer Iwona Centurami, Engineering Alumni Assistant

From left to right: Len King, Susan Laughton, Peter George, Gary Macro, Romeo Palombella and John Richmond.

Who would have thought …

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s engineering alumni know, their degrees can lead to many wonderful opportunities. For some, however, the B.Eng has been a catalyst to branch out in other directions. Larry Timms, chemical ’89, always figured he be a teacher. First he obtained a B.Sc. from Waterloo. Then it was on to engineering at McMaster. Following this, he worked for a company in the R&D Larry Timms department, telling himself he would stay ten years, then teach. Long before his self-imposed deadline, the firm axed the department and he enrolled in the teacher’s college at the University of Western Ontario. Today, he’s assistant head of the math department at Waterdown High School, just north of Hamilton, Ontario. And, he also coaches the school’s football team. c

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“I love football and played the game at the high school level,” he says. He is very proud of his team and their successes. “In the last 9 years, we have won the city championship 7 times, including the last 3 years. Last year, we were ranked third in Canada!” Coaching provides immense satisfaction, he adds. “The kids get to see a different side of you. They don’t perceive you simply as a teacher. They respect you for helping them.” This perception, he adds, spills over into the classroom – which in the end, benefits both teacher and student. Richard Wesolowski, chemical ’97, provides advice and skills tips to the girls basketball team at St. Mary’s High School in Hamilton. In December 2002, the St. Mary’s team, the

Richard Wesolowski

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Research news Peng Awarded McMaster Researchers Awarded CFI Funding Prestigious Stieltjes Prize T Jiming Peng, a member of the Advanced Optimization Laboratory, Department of Computing and Software, is the recipient of the 2001 Stieltjes Prize. The Thomas Stieltjes Institute for Mathematics was formed by the universities in Amsterdam, Eindhoven, Delft, Leiden and Rotterdam. The prize is recognized as a prestigious one for young researchers in the broadly defined area of mathematical sciences. It is given annually to the author of the best Ph.D. Thesis. Peng received the award on Wednesday, February 12th at the annual meeting of the Stieltjes Institute, at which time he also delivered his award lecture. Peng’s thesis, “Self-Regularity: A New Paradigm for Primal-Dual Interior-Point Algorithms”, by: J. Peng, C. Roos, and T. Terlaky, is published by Princeton University Press under the “Princeton Series of Applied Mathematics”. (For details see the publisher’s WEB page: http://pup.princeton.edu/titles/7323.html). The Stieltjes Prize Committee called Dr. Peng’s thesis “a mathematically elegant and profound piece of work.” The thesis develops a new approach for the analysis and implementation of primal-dual interior-point methods for linear, conic, quadratic and semi-definite programming. Peng shows that with this approach, the complexity of large update methods can be improved so much that their complexity may come arbitrarily close to the complexity of small-update methods. The thesis narrows the long-standing gap between the best theoretical results about the complexity of inter-point methods with small steps and numerical practice where large steps are used and, as such, is recognized as an important contribution in the theory of inter-point methods. The thesis also introduces a new and promising field of research at the area of convex optimization.

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These three join five other McMaster researchers who received more than $2 million in research support during CFI’s last round of New Opportunities Funding in October 2002. In the Faculty of Engineering, Chang-Qing Xu, associate professor of electrical and electronic engineering, was awarded $211,101 for research on optical waveguide devices based on lithium niobate substrates. The other four recipients were: Alex Adronov, assistant professor of chemistry, awarded $179,392; Brian King, assistant professor of physics, awarded $399,851; Karen Mossman, assistant professor of microbiology, awarded $205,587; David Shore, assistant professor of psychology, awarded $173,333. To date, 55 McMaster research projects have received a cumulative total of $9,975,945 in New Opportunities Funds. The funding is part of more than $17.7 million awarded to 97 of the nation’s emerging research leaders at 26 Canadian universities.

wo up-and-coming engineering researchers are among the latest McMaster recipients of the Canada Foundation for Innovation’s (CFI) New Opportunities Funding program. Paulin Coulibaly, assistant professor jointly in geography & geology and civil engineering, was awarded $207,490 to research high-resolution soil moisture, through measurement, characterization, modeling and hydrologic applications. Yiping Guo, assistant professor of civil engineering, received $94,239 for field research for the control of non-point source water pollution. In addition, Geoff Werstuck, assistant professor of medicine in the Faculty of Health Sciences, was awarded $132,719, to study molecular mechanisms by which diabetes mellitus promotes the development and progression of atherogenesis. The total of $434,448 will provide world-class labs and facilities for the newly recruited faculty members to undertake leading-edge research in their first full-time academic appointment.

In Memorium: Professor James N. Siddall Hamilton. He continued to serve as a consultant to industry after joining the faculty at McMaster. Professor Siddall was one of the first faculty members in the department to recognize the importance of computers in teaching and research and he recognized that the use of personal computers would fundamentally change the way the collection and analysis of data would be carried out. He was a innovator in promoting the importance of design in engineering and was regarded as a leader in the field of optimization. His areas of research included probabilistic design which involved the development of new computer-aided techniques, risk analysis in optimization and microcomputer applications in mechanical

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t was with great sadness that the Department learned of the passing of Professor James N. Siddall on December 26th, 2002. Professor Siddall was one of the most highly respected members of the department and is fondly remembered by colleagues, students and staff. Professor Siddall joined the Department as an Assistant Professor in 1959. Following his promotion to full professor in 1970, he served two terms as Department Chairman from 1973 to 1979. Prior to joining McMaster, Professor Siddall was employed in industry, first as Project Engineer at the Ford Motor Company, as a Design Engineer for Cockshutt Farm Equipment Ltd. and as a Mechanical Engineer, New Product Development at National Steel Car in U

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New Faculty members Chemical Engineering Dr. Lisa Crossley joined the department as Assistant Professor in January, 2003. She will be a key contributor to the development of our bioengineering program. She comes to us from Lisa Crossley Dyax Corporation, a biopharmaceutical company, in Cambridge, MA where she was Product Development Manager. Lisa holds a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Queen’s University, specializing in Biochemical Engineering, and undergraduate degrees in Anatomy and Cell Biology (McGill) and Chemical Engineering (Queen’s). After finishing her Ph.D. she worked as an NSERC Visiting Scientist at the NRC’s Biotechnology Research Institute in Montreal.

Japan working at Tohoku National Industrial Research Institute (Post Doctoral Fellow, Researcher) and at Tohoku University (Researcher, Visiting Scientist). After joining McMaster University in 1997, he worked in Professor Gary R. Purdy’s research group, firstly as a Post Doctoral Fellow, and then as a Research Associate. His research areas are computational thermodynamics, thermo-mechanical processing, phase transformations, and numerical simulation. The department has appointed Dr. Igor Zhitomirsky as an Associate Professor.

Veronica Czerneda Staff Award for Outstanding Service Joan Zywina, Academic Assistant to the Associate Dean of Engineering, is the second recipient of the Veronika Czerneda Staff Award for Outstanding Service. Mo Elbestawi, Dean of Engineering made the presentation in December 2002. Joan has been in her position since 1984. The award is presented to a staff member who has made an outstanding contribution beyond the normal expectations. As well as a framed citation, Joan receives an award of $500 from an endowment established as a result of a fundraising campaign. The Staff Award was officially launched in 2001 in memory of Veronika Czerneda, Administrative Coordinator of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering who passed away July 2000. In her memory, the Faculty of Engineering, spearheaded a fundraising campaign to

Engineering Physics Dr. Andy Knights joined the department of Engineering Physics in January, 2003. Dr. Knights received his Ph.D. from the University East Anglia, UK in 1995 and has Andy Knights research interests in the development of silicon processing. Prior to his appointment at McMaster he was employed in the R and D division of the UK based silicon photonics company, Bookham Technology.

Materials Science & Engineering Dr. Dmitri V. Malakhov, B.Sc. Moscow State University (1983), joined the department on January 1, 2003. After graduation, he worked at the Institute of Inorganic Chemistry (Novosibirsk, Dmitri V. Malakhov Russia) in the field of thermodynamics of materials for microelectronics. After getting Ph.D. in 1992, he was awarded by postdoctoral fellowships and spent four years in

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Dr. Zhitomirsky holds a Ph.D. in physics from L.Ya. Karpov Research Institute of Physical Chemistry (Moscow). He started his work in the Department of Materials Science and Igor Zhitomirsky Engineering as a Research Associate in 1998, and was later employed as Associate Professor. His research areas include electrodeposition, nanostructured materials, ferroelectric and magnetic materials, biomaterials.

Philip Czerneda, Joan Zywina & Professor Brian Ives

create an endowment for the creation of a staff award that would be given in honour of Veronika’s many years of service. A total of eighty-four donors (alumni, staff, family and friends) made a contribution towards the creation of the fund. The award is drawn from interest earned on the $10,000 endowment.

Who would have thought? continued from page 8 Crusaders, won the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations AAAA championship tournament, claiming their fifth provincial high school championship in 7 years. Wesolowski, who also teaches science and chemistry, has coached the school’s team to four of these wins. St. Mary’s happens to be his high school alma mater, and he fondly recalls playing on the school’s basketball team. He also played basketball while attending Mac. c

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Wesolowski did apply his engineering degree in various positions for Toronto companies for a couple of years prior to entering the teaching profession. He enjoys coaching for a number of reasons. “It’s an opportunity to give something back to the kids,” he says. “You spend a lot of time with them and as a result, get to know them personally.” He also enjoys teaching and receives great satisfaction in seeing his students “go on and do well” in their postgraduation years. N

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Departmental newsbriefs Council of INFORMS: the International Federation of Operations Research and Management Sciences.

Chemical Engineering Congratulations to Chen Lu, a Ph.D. student under the supervision of Dr. Robert Pelton, who placed second in the 2003 Canadian Pulp and Paper Graduate Student Seminars, qualifying him for a H.I. Bolker Prize. The seminars were held during the Pulp & Paper Technical Association of Canada (PAPTAC) meeting at the Palais des Congrés on January 30th. Twenty graduate students presented their research as undertaken at Pulp and Paper Centres in universities across Canada. The title of Lu’s seminar was: “Poly(ethylene oxide)/ Polypeptide Cofactor Flocculation Mechanism: Influence of Poly(ethylene oxide) Molecular Weight”. Three prizes were created in the name of Dr. H.I. Bolker. They are aimed at encouraging and recognizing students who achieve excellence in communication by presenting their research. Dr. Robert Pelton and his wife, Helen, recently attended a dinner at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa with the Right Honourable Jean Chrétien and his wife Aline, in honour of his excellency Gèran Persson, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Sweden. Dr. Pelton is very active in research and production areas of pulp and paper and has worked with Swedish paper companies. The Journal of Chemometrics (Issue 1, Volume 17) was dedicated to Dr. John MacGregor, the fourth recipient of the Herman Wold medal. The medal was awarded by the Swedish Chemometrics Society at the 7th Scandinavian symposium on Chemometrics in Denmark, August 2001. It is awarded to a person who contributes significantly to the development and proliferation of chemometrics both inside academia and industry, “in the spirit of Herman Wold”. The editorial to the first issue of volume 17 details the many contributions that Dr. MacGregor has made to both industry and academia. It also contains testimonials to John’s work written by former students, friends, industrial clients and colleagues.

Computing & Software Tamás Terlaky has recently been elected for a two-year term to the Subdivisions M

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Science and Technology Inc. Safety and Environmental Protection Research Institute in China were at McMaster for three months from November 2002 to February 2003. During that time they worked with Dr. J-S. Chang conducting joint research projects on construction of a pilot plant for Plasma Pollution Control for Coal Boiler Flu Gases. From September 2002 to January 2003, Dr. Na Li, from the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, worked with C-Q Xu on research in the development of semiconductor lasers.

Engineering Physics Congratulations are extended to ChangQing Xu on his successful application to New Opportunity Program through CFI (Canada Foundation for Innovation), for his research on optical waveguide devices based on lithium niobate substrates. He was also awarded funds through the Ontario Innovations Trust to support the research being funded through CFI. On February 6th, Paul Jessop hosted a meeting here at McMaster of the Ontario Photonics Education and Training Association (OPETA). The participants were from Ontario universities, colleges, government and industry groups. OPETA’s role is to promote photonics education and foster cooperation among various types of programs, including university level (both graduate and undergraduate) college level and professional re-skilling. The department welcomed a number of visitors recently. Drs. Wen-Ming Wang and Han-fang Hu, from the Wuhang Tiancheng Environmental Protection

Materials Science & Engineering The department extends its heartiest congratulations to Gary Purdy who has been elected to the US National Academy of Engineers as a Foreign Associate. He is being recognized for pioneering theoretical and experimental studies of chemical and structural effects on phase transformations and interfacial diffusion-induced phenomena. There are only 7 Canadian Foreign Associates, and two of them are in our department! The other is David Embury.

Dan Olsen profile Olsen’s church in Scarborough to Nicaragua where they helped to build a house (with Habitat for Humanity). This past summer Olsen travelled to Mexico with his own group of McMaster students. “They teach you way more than you could ever teach them,” he says of the people he has met and helped. “Everyone helps each other and is committed to family. I think sometimes in Canada and North America we get away from that, those values of family and helping others, and focus on other things that don’t really matter.” Engineering seems to run in his family. In addition to his father, Greg, his two brothers are also in engineering. (Younger brother Dave is now in his third-year chemical engineering and management at McMaster. Older brother Geoff graduated from McMaster’s mechanical engineering and management program in 2001.) U

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However, Olsen admits he’s more interested in the ‘soft’ skills of engineering rather than the more technical side. He spends a good portion of his time now promoting among fellow students, friends and peers the opportunities that exist to help abroad and make a difference at the grassroots level. “I know a lot of engineers who have approached me about this work and have asked what it’s all about. Most people want to do something to bring about positive change in the world.” Looking ahead, Olsen is hoping for a career in international work. He’s thinking about a master’s program and expects his interest in sustainability, nurtured under the tutelage of civil engineering professor Brian Baetz, will guide his future direction. It is possible to make a difference as individuals and as a society, he says. “It’s important we all do our part to be socially responsible.” T

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Plans to Grow

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everal new major research and educational initiatives are underway in the Faculty of Engineering. To meet the needs of students, business, and industry, the Faculty is creating a new School for Engineering Practice as well as a new program in Biomedical Engineering. These initiatives build on McMaster’s interdisciplinary strengths and will position McMaster at the forefront of a new era in engineering. The School for Engineering Practice will comprise three new research and educational centres. Centre for Engineering Entrepreneurship and Innovation (CEEI)

Centre for Engineering and Public Policy (CEPP)

Centre for Engineering Design (CED)

McMaster School for Engineering Practice (MSEP)

The first major donation towards this project was received from alumnus Walter Booth to create an endowed chair in Engineering, Entrepreneurship and Innovation. This wonderful gift will allow the Faculty to recruit a new faculty member with an expertise in commercializing new engineering ideas and technical expertise. To create the infrastructure needed for the new initiatives McMaster University plans to construct a new building. A 40,000 square foot stand-alone building will contain approximately 15,000 square feet of new laboratory space, new classrooms and will be home to the proposed McMaster School for Engineering Practice and the new Biomedical Engineering program. $6 million in private funding will be raised for construction of the $8 million building. The new building will have state-of-theart facilities for students, faculty and researchers. The design of the building will promote outstanding research and act as a catalyst for discovery and innovation. By bringing together research and resources, new alliances will be forged between research groups, industry and the University.

Annual Giving, the foundation for Alumni Support From the steady flow of major gifts announced during McMaster’s Changing Tomorrow Today Campaign, one might suggest that all support for the University comes in very large contributions. There is, however, another essential aspect for support from alumni through yearly appeals, with contributions of all sizes. Annual giving provides crucial resources for departments and programs. In 2002 annual giving from alumni and friends raised $1.5 million for the Faculty of Engineering. Annual donations also builds and sustains long-term relationships between the Faculty of Engineering and its alumni. It gives the Faculty the opportunity to update alumni and friends on the activities and initiatives in engineering. With solid support of engineering alumni who contribute annually, they do their part to sustain and enhance the Faculty’s world-class reputation. For more information on how you can make a contribution, please contact Terry Milson, at (905) 525-9140 extension 27391, or e-mail: milsont@mcmaster.ca

Photonics Engineering program a first in Canada The Department of Engineering Physics at McMaster University is pleased to announce the introduction of a new Bachelor of Engineering program in Photonics Engineering. Photonics is that branch of Science and Engineering that deals with the generation, control, detection and application of lightwaves, and it has long been an area of strength within the Department. In recent years, Photonics has emerged as an important new engineering discipline, with applications in areas such as telecommunications, medicine, manufacturing, sensors, displays and traditional optical engineering. McMaster’s new program will be the first of its kind in Canada, reflecting a trend that has appeared in other countries. Like the existing Engineering Physics program, Photonics Engineering will provide students with a broad background in basic engineering, mathematics, electronics and semiconductors. However, the new program will provide students with an opportunity to focus more intently on

photonics and to have that fact recognized in the program designation. Following McMaster’s successful pattern of fiveyear engineering programs, a new B.Eng. in Photonics Engineering and Management and another in Photonics Engineering and Society will be introduced in parallel with the four-year program. Accreditation of all three new programs by the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board is being sought. The first students are expected to enter Level II in September 2003, with the first class graduating in the spring of 2006. It is the declared objective of the Photonics Engineering program to provide world-class, intensive education and training in photonics, using dedicated laboratories with advanced facilities and with the capacity to handle all of the students in the program. To that end, a new laboratory course for senior undergraduate students will be established, made possible through generous donations of state-of-the-art equipment by JDS-Uniphase. It will focus on light

sources, active devices, passive devices, and sub-systems in a broad range of applications from telecommunications to medicine, to manufacture and to sensing. Students will acquire hands-on experience in design, characterization and system testing of photonic devices using the most advanced tools and equipment, which are not readily available at many universities in the world. This course will be linked with a new lecture course, which covers contents such as laser and chemical safety, fiber optic communications, integrated optics, light sources, transmitters, receivers, regenerators and amplifiers, and passive and active components. Students will also be trained to use a waveguide simulator donated by Apollo Photonics to design photonic devices encountered in lectures and experiments. We firmly believe that ultimately, both industry and research institutes in Canada, especially those based in Ontario, will benefit from the highly qualified personnel trained through the new program.

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From an engineer’s point of view Responsibilities and Challenges Facing Engineers in our New Economic Landscape tinue to have the need to try and somehow address what we perceive to be our planet’s global environmental problems resulting from our actions and consumer choices. In our society, we, as engineers, have been entrusted with the great responsibility of safeguarding the public’s health and safety. We fulfill this critical role by involvement in various diverse disciplines and exciting fields of practice. Whether regulating drinking water standards, managing construction projects, working to make automobiles safer, setting air emissions standards, or researching and developing new medicines in the pharmaceutical industry, as engineers, we continually place the public’s welfare as our highest responsibility. But in order to keep up with our environment and the recent challenges that our society is faced with, we must go beyond our traditional ways of thinking. We must think holistically to improve the lives of the public. In some leading countries, for example, this includes a wide range of responsibilities such as: preserving biological diversity, reduction of emissions of hazardous substances, improving indoor air quality, and reduction of noise pollution in urban centres. As a McMaster graduate from the Water/Environmental Engineering stream within the Dept. of Civil Engineering, I look forward to exploring all of these new possibilities and responsibilities both personally and professionally. Our society is changing greatly, and we must rise and address the challenges that face our planet and its inhabitants. We must not only ensure our own welfare, but also preserve the safety of our next generations on earth. These will be our most important challenges in the coming decades.

by Cam Vatandoust, P.Eng.

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he single most important contributing factor to the recent changes witnessed in the global economic landscape has been the development of new technologies. Our ability to obtain information efficiently has changed our lives forever. New developments have made previously seemingly impossible tasks, achievable, creating new economic sectors, phasing out redundant industries and overall shifting the planet’s economical forces. This enormous change, along with availability of this technology for the use of the masses, has resulted in new consumer demands and expectations, which must also be met by society, reflecting an even greater change in industrial, economical, commercial, transportation, health, science, social and educational needs of our population. For instance, although many educational institutions have long recognized these changes and patterns, few have adapted accordingly to meet the new needs of our society. McMaster University, however, has made a conscious decision to meet this challenge head-on by developing The McMaster School for Engineering Practice (MSEP) which will address specific needs by creating a unique learning environment. The demands that have resulted from our

Cam Vatandoust

new “wireless” lifestyle have also put huge stresses on our planet and its ecosystems to provide the necessary natural resources to sustain our “improved” lifestyle and meet increasing consumer needs and expectations. There has never been more demand for raw materials, fuels and electricity. Our attempts to satisfy the enormous thirst for resources to keep our massive economies afloat have resulted in significant changes in the planet’s environment over recent decades. We have noticed this more and more in recent years, and con-

Don Priljeva profile not until later that he developed an interest in business. The Campus Incubator Business Plan Challenge offers a series of awards, of which the startup prize is the first step. The second step requires teams to submit a full business plan. Through a series of free workshops, participants in the challenge learn first-hand from legal, accounting, marketing, patenting, financing and management experts all the aspects of business planning. Up to $50,000 in cash and services will be awarded to the teams of entrepreneurs whose business plans for new

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ventures show significant business potential. Priljeva’s team entered the second stage, making the January 31st deadline. “It would have been crazy for us not to enter,” he says. “While the (start-up) award is helpful in kick-starting the company, it’s the skills and experience we gain that is most valuable.” Priljeva is always looking to network with like-minded entrepreneurs with ideas on technical business solutions. If you have something you would like to discuss, or just to catch up, feel free to contact him at: dan.priljeva@sympatico.ca.

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Cam Vatandoust, P.Eng., is a senior engineer with Ontario Ministry of the Environment in Toronto, specializing in water and wastewater standards and infrastructure capital works. He also is an instructor for Seneca College’s School of Civil Engineering Technology.

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MES news Meet 2003-2004 MES President Josh Wong

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am a student in third year Computer Engineering and Management, and a Red Suit. I’ll be serving on the Orientation Committee to select next year’s Red Suits for Welcome Week. I knew I belonged in McMaster Engineering during Welcome Week when I was walking down the stairwell in JHE lined with Red Suits chanting the words to “Godiva”. Since being elected First Year Representative, I have been involved with the MES. I remember some of the Presidents before me such as Mets Kramer, Braden Kurczak and Elizabeth Clark, and I hope to improve on the sturdy foundations they built. There are many things the MES can do to serve the students better. Some key ideas that have surfaced include: • Improve the image of an Engineer on and off campus by coordinating and supporting charitable causes • Open the MES and providing services everyone can use • Make the MES reflect and encompass the interests of more of its members. The MES should be responsive and listen to new ideas. • Prepare our Engineers for life after University by educating students on career opportunities outside the classroom, such as achieving a Professional license

Josh Wong holds a sword engraved with the message “Created and donated by Steve Sears, Civ Mgmt 1994”. It bears a metal fireball the size of a dime. On the opposite side of the blade is a crest of McMaster University. The words “McMaster” and “Engineering” are engraved on each side of the hilt.

• Increase Engineering Spirit throughout the Faculty beyond the Red Suits; our Engineering spirit is not limited solely to our Red Suits • Create a more professional atmosphere

by developing a relationship with sponsors for our teams and in communicating with other universities • Support the endeavours of all Engineering students here at McMaster. One of the challenges that the MES faces along with the rest of the University this year is the incoming double cohort. We have been preparing for two years and I am confident that we are ready to introduce this fall’s First Year Engineering students to McMaster and make them feel at home, just as I felt three and a half years ago. I think by being an ECE student (a department with traditionally low participation in the MES), I bring a unique perspective to the MES. I can appreciate the workload that all Engineering students face day-to-day which makes it difficult to participate in any activity outside of class. But I firmly believe that a well-rounded education, not just one developed inside the classroom, is vital to achieving success after University, and in life in general. I hope that my work throughout the year will earn me a place among the strong Presidents of times past, and I look forward to working with the new MES council next year. I sincerely trust that next year will be exciting and fun as we work together to achieve great things.

Fireball II All Revved To Go

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team of McMaster engineering students, lead by project leader Claire Braden, has made some dramatic changes to the University’s 2001 solar car. They are hopeful that an improved design combined with a 20 per cent reduction in weight will result in a creditable showing in the 3,700 kilometre American Solar Challenge this summer. “Fireball II is lighter, stronger, more efficient and definitely prettier,” says Braden, a fifth-year mechanical engineering student. The car is covered with 430 solar cells which are at least 50 per cent more efficient than those used to cover the first vehicle. As well, the lead-acid batteries have been replaced with lighter, more efficient lithium ion batteries. These changes should help boost the car’s top speed to 95 km/hr from 70 km/hr.

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An additional change, providing a subtle boost to moral, has been to replace the original race number of 13 with the number 87 – in honour of the 1887 founding of the University. The students have been working within a projected budget of $124,000, which comes from corporate and individual sponsors. Anyone wanting to assist the project financially can check the web site at www.solarcar.mcmcaster.ca or phone 905-525-9140 ext. 27388. Braden says Fireball II will be ready by May, giving the team all of June to test and refine the vehicle before the race. The American Solar Challenge is the world’s most well-known solar car race. It starts on July 17 at Chicago and follows historic Route 66, ending 10 days later in

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(From left to right) Claire Braden (Team Leader), Greg Jackson, Andrew Bryan, Emad Fahem are working on the fairing of Fireball II at Comtek Advanced Structures manufacturing facility.

Claremont, California. It typically attracts entries from all over North America as well as Europe, and includes teams from some of the best engineering schools in the world, such as MIT, Stanford and Waterloo.

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Students give gift of time

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nstead of the traditional end-of-school pranks, a group of fifth-year mechanical engineering students propose to leave a gift of time as their legacy to McMaster. A decorative clock, designed and constructed by students Patrick Burton, Braden Kurczak, Michael Paddags and Peter Whitred, will be placed in a prominent position above the doorframe of the north entrance to the McMaster University

Al-Riaz Adatia continued from page 4

acquisition by Lycos, worth more than $70M (USD). He has since gone on to invest in a portfolio of over 15 companies and is actively involved with leadership and engineering ventures. Of his business development career, he says: “I invest and offer business and strategic advice to a number of private companies. These investments range from fund investments to direct hands-on (seed money and advice).” He adds that investments are not limited to technology companies. His success, he says, is due to an ability to focus on three integrated areas: engineering, teaching, and leadership. “Engineering, knowledge transfer and leadership all complement each other, making each skill more valuable.” Al-Riaz currently travels and works between Vancouver, BC and Hamilton, ON, giving back to the wider Canadian community. Activities include fostering entrepreneurial talent and helping new and innovative companies in Canada reach their full potential. He continues to fund and invest in companies “to give support and faith to the new companies of tomorrow”. In addition, his financial position is providing an opportunity to explore humanitarian projects in India and with e-learning companies. Spare time is spent on two favourite hobbies: cars and traveling. He is a member of SF VW GROUPPEE, BMW Club of America, Ferrari Club of America and Mercedes STAR. “I have designed two cars, won a number of car awards and had the cars featured in Magazines.” He is also involved with racing and spends time on racetracks around northern California and Nevada. “In my travels, I like to spend time scuba diving, motorcycling and ashram hopping (don’t ask!).” Although young, Al-Riaz has achieved success beyond his years and is proof that Canadians can compete on a global scale. M

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Student Centre. The timepiece is in fact the students’ thesis project, under the supervision of Tim Nye, assistant professor of mechanical engineering. The clock’s design includes a double ring that encircles a shield emblazoned with the McMaster coat of arms. The upper ring will indicate the hours and the bottom ring, the minutes. The six-inch high numerals should be visible from across campus. The aesthetics have been carefully thought out: all mechanical drives and power transmission systems will be hidden behind the shield which will appear to be floating in the centre of the ring. “We were looking for something interesting that would put together our engineering and management skills,” says Braden Kurczak. “We expect the clock to be attractive, but also easy to read, accurate and requiring low maintenance. It is run off the wall current, not computer controlled, so should run relatively accurately.” The ring shape is of course a reference to the traditional iron ring worn by engineering students on the fifth finger of their working hand. The iron ring is a symbolic emblem that reminds the engineers of their ethical obligations to society. As all graduating engineers know, the symbol evolved from an incident in Quebec in the 1920’s in which a steel bridge collapsed killing several people. A group of Canadian engineers decided that an organization was needed to emphasize the social significance of the profession to new engineers. Professor Haultain from the University of Toronto wrote for advice to Rudyard Kipling, who had written about the work of engineers in some of his poems. Kipling responded

This clock, designed and constructed by students Patrick Burton, Braden Kurczak, Michael Paddags and Peter Whitred, will be placed over the north entrace to the MUSC.

enthusiastically devising both a ring ceremony and a statement of obligation called “The Ritual of the Calling of an Engineer.” In their thesis proposal, the students note that the project will provide positive publicity to the artistic skills of the McMaster student body by being one of the few permanent features on campus that is studentdesigned and manufactured. Kurczak admits that the group first thought of doing a prank, such as attaching a clock to the Chimeric Figure (John Ivor Smith’s regularly vandalized sculpture). “But this seemed like something more positive. It will be the culmination of our five years at McMaster.” The Student Centre has accepted the design concept, and the students expect to spend a full year on the construction and fine-tuning. The cost will be approximately $10,000. Anyone wishing to help with “advice, support, wisdom, experience, influence or donations” should contact Braden Kurczak at kurczaba@mcmaster.ca .

Professor James Siddall design. He was the author of 3 books published by Marcel Dekker which were related to his research work and was pursuing research in artificial intelligence up to, and beyond, his retirement in 1987. Professor Siddall’s profound influence as a teacher and innovator was cited by McMaster alumnus Walter G. Booth whose $1 million gift will establish an endowed chair in engineering entrepreneurship and innovation. Mr. Booth stated in a recent McMaster news release ...“ that his gift to McMaster was his way of saying thanks to two McMaster professors – former engineering dean Jack Hodgins

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and Jim Siddall – and honouring their willingness to be academic leaders of innovation. Booth said both men were instrumental in his academic life and pursuit of a meaningful and successful career as an entrepreneur.”

Get your MacEngineer by e-mail! If you would like to receive your issue by e-mail (pdf format) please contact Carm Vespi, vespi@mcmaster.ca

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First Annual McMaster

E ngineering Golf Tournament Thursday, May 22, 2003

Tyandaga Municipal Golf Course 1265 Tyandaga Park Drive, Burlington, Ontario

“Shotgun” Start at 1:00 p.m. Cost per participant: $100

Tournament Includes: 18 hole Tournament – Scramble Format Shared golf cart Includes a sausage or hamburger and a drink after the 9th hole Welcome package Fabulous prize table Great contests throughout the course Closing Dinner Banquet Please RSVP by May 1,2003 to Carm Vespi, (905) 525-9140, ext. 24906, e-mail: vespi@mcmaster.ca or register on-line: http://www.eng.mcmaster.ca/engalumni/

BOOK EARLY, SPACE IS LIMITED!

If you would like to donate a prize(s) for the Golf Tournament contact Carm Vespi.

If you would like to contact someone from your class year and organize a foursome contact Carm Vespi.

Get a foursome together and support your Alumni Association! 16

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Opening doors to a bright future...

A Building for Students and New Ideas

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onstruction has begun on McMaster’s Centre for Learning and Discovery, the University’s 300,000 squarefoot, five-storey expansion to the north side of the McMaster Health Sciences Centre. It is scheduled for completion in the summer of 2004. The new facility will provide much needed space for teaching, learning and research. The first floor will include six classrooms and five lecture theatres for classes from across all faculties. One 600-seat theatre will be the largest seating space on campus. Altogether, the first floor will accommodate more than 1,800 students and will help McMaster address the needs created by Ontario’s “double cohort”. The second floor will be connected to

Upcoming Events... Thurs., May 22, 2003 First Annual Engineering Golf Tournament, Tyandaga Municipal Golf Course, Burlington, Ontario Cost: $100 person

Sat., June 7, 2003 Alumni Weekend Class ’63, ’78, ’83 McMaster University Cost: $35 person

Oct. 3, 4, 5, 2003 Homecoming Weekend Class Reunion 1988 and 1993

the McMaster University Medical Centre and will be used by Hamilton Health Sciences for patient care wards. Plans are still being finalized, but the hospital may use the space for intensive care facilities. The third floor is dedicated to the needs of the Faculty of Health Sciences for classrooms, tutorial rooms, postgraduate offices and laboratories. A rounds room will have state-of-the-art teleconferencing facilities, allowing students at hospitals across the city or throughout the province to join in discussions as if they were sitting in the room. The fourth and most of the fifth floors will showcase the Institute for Molecular Medicine and Health (IMMH), which includes the Centre for Artist’s renderings of the Centre for Learning & Gene Therapeutics. The two floors will Discovery addition to the McMaster Health Sciences contain a variety of offices, wet labora- Centre tories and a biotechnology incubator. The rest of the fifth floor will be used for a laboratory to the doctor’s office. research incubator. An interior atrium will This facility will help ensure McMaster add a dramatic design statement, flooding continues to grow as a leading centre in the top floors with natural light. gene therapy, says Jack Gauldie, holder of Established in 1996, the Centre for Gene the John Bienenstock Chair in Molecular Therapeutics already has an impressive Medicine, head of IMMH and chair of the track record for investigating, creating and Department of Pathology. implementing ways to use genes as mediFunds for the construction of the building cines in infectious diseases, cancer and disare expected from the Canadian Foundation eases of the lung. The IMMH will promote for Innovation, the SuperBuild fund of the “bench to bedside” research that is Government of Ontario, Hamilton Health designed to decrease the time it takes medSciences and McMaster University, as well ical discoveries to move from the research as private donors.

Mon., Oct. 27, 2003 Change of address card:

5:30-7:00 pm – Reception for McMaster Chemical Engineering in connection with the Canadian Chemical Engineering conference Oct. 26-29. Details at www.chemeng.mcmaster.ca/

Name:_______________________________________________________________________________ Grad Yr. & Dept.: _____________________________________________________________________ New Address: _________________________________________________________________________

Thurs., Nov. 6, 2003

____________________________________________________________________________________

MACLAB Extravaganza 2003. Keynote speaker is Vince Smith, President and CEO Dow Chemical Canada Inc. Details at www.eng.mcmaster.ca/engalumni/ index.html

Phone: __________________________________ Fax: ________________________________________ Postal Code: __________________ E-mail:_________________________________________________ Comments: (present occupation, recent accomplishments ie: awards, recognitions).

For additional information or to register for any of the above events, please contact Carm Vespi, (905) 525-9140, ext. 24906, or e-mail: vespi@mcmaster.ca, or register on-line: http://www.eng.mcmaster.ca/engalumni/

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____________________________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________________ Any comments provided will be included in the next issue.

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Alumni Grapevine Hey Alumni! Have you moved, taken a new job, got something you would like to say, any other news? We would like to hear from you. Contact Carm Vespi Tel: (905) 525-9140, ext. 24906, E-Mail vespi@mcmaster.ca

Civil Eng&Mgmt

MacMetEng

MacElEng&Mgmt

Goulding, Ryan ’02: Currently working for Lafarge Canada Inc. in Concord, Ontario in the Asphalt and Paving Division. My management schooling allowed me to secure a position in the Performance Group working to develop corporate strategy following a major acquisition. I knew that Eng. Mgmt. was a valuable program while I was at Mac however, now that I am working, I can see the full advantage that it has given me. I feel that I have already made up for the extra year spent doing the program.

Martin, Glenn, ’74: Lydea and I celebrated our 28th wedding anniversary in 2002. Our son Joel, a Carleton graduate engineer working at Telesat, will marry in June 2003; our daughter Jodi is a psychology major at Ottawa U. Lydea works as Office Administrator at an elementary school here in Ottawa where we live, and I’m still at the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC). Planning for our retirement in less than four years!

Grkovic, Sinisa, ’00: Currently working for Hydro One Networks Inc, a subsidiary of Hydro One Inc, as a Station Design Engineer. I work on electrical arrangement design of high voltage transformer stations. Participated in the fall Career Fair on behalf of my company and I have to say – the new Student Centre looks awesome! Married and residing in Burlington, Ontario.

MacChemEng Vivaldo-Lima, Eduardo. ’98: I joined the Faculty of Chemistry at the National Autonomous University as Associate Professor in October 1998. I am also the current president of the Mexican Polymer Society.

MacCivEng Tamblyn, Dave, ’90: Married to Giulliana Wong Trelles in August, 2001. We moved to Hamilton, Ontario in October 2002 and I currently teach civil engineering at Mohawk College. Friends can contact me at drtamblyn@yahoo.ca.

MacMechEng Clutterbuck, Tim, ’80: Married for 21 years in May. We have two kids: Cal is 15 going on 20! He is a very good hockey player who hopes to get drafted to Major Junior A in May. Daughter Megan is 12 (almost 13); she dances and plays basketball (I’m the coach – b-ball not dance!) I work at Etobicoke-based Integris Metals but live in Welland which is quite a daily commute. I spent 20 years at a Steel Mill in Welland and left there a couple of years ago to work in the distribution business – et VOILA - here I am!

MacManfgEng&Mgmt Tourigny, Mark, ’94: Presently working as Production Manager at Ajax Precision Manufacturing

MacMechEng & Mgmt.

Cecconi, Mike, ’98: Started working with Imperial Oil in Toronto, Ontario after graduation. Married Jennifer Laceby (Hons. Poli-Sci & History, ’98) in August 2000. Moved to Sarnia, Ontario, where I currently provide engineering support for Imperial’s lubricant oil blending and packaging plant. Our twin boys, Ethan and Connor, were born in September 2002 – life will never be the same!

MacEngPhys Li, Marco, ’88: Currently living and working in Singapore. E-address is marco.li@hp.com.

Alumni Feedback… To:

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Sinisa Grkovic, Electrical and Management, ’00: “I enjoy reading the MacEngineer and I would like to receive it in the future. A few months ago I was at McMaster as a rep for my company during the Career Fair and I have to admit that the new Student Center looks awesome! Definitely great addition to McMaster University.”

Ms. Carm Vespi Managing Editor The MacEngineer Faculty of Engineering John Hodgins Building, Room A 201 McMaster University Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4L7 Tel: (905) 525-9140, ext. 24906 Fax: (905) 546-5492 E-mail: vespi@mcmaster.ca

The MacEngineer

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Marco Li, Eng. Physics, ’88: “BTW, Carm, Thanks for doing all this work for the alumni.”

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Suzuki Opens Engineering Conference

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ell-known Canadian environmentalist David Suzuki was the keynote speaker at the 9th annual Canadian Society for Civil Engineering Student Conference that focused on the theme of sustainability. The two-day gathering of engineering students, held on January 31 and February 1, 2003 at McMaster, emphasizes the connections between civil engineering and environmental issues. Members of the public, including area high school students, joined Mac students and faculty in the Ivor Wynne Centre gymnasium to hear Suzuki’s talk entitled “Web of Life”. In his address, he made no apologies for his harsh condemnation of our mistreatment of the world around us. And he challenged engineering students to put the

battered environment ahead of the bottom line when they assume their careers. The host of the TV show The Nature of Things said the world cannot sustain constant growth spurred on by a penchant for disposable consumer goods. Suzuki painted a picture of the drastic environmental changes that have occurred in his life time such as valuable farmlands turned into apartment complexes and tap water that can’t be trusted. “We have forgotten the fundamental realities in Canada,” he said. “We live in a series of myths and misconceptions that lead us to environmental degradation.” Other speakers included McMaster engineering professors Brian Baetz and Cameron Churchill who spoke about sustainable communities.

The purpose of the conference, which attracted almost 100 engineering students from six universities in Ontario, is to increase students’ awareness of the environmental impacts of civil engineering projects. “Sustainability is part of engineering and we are future engineers,” says conference coordinator Aaron Ward, a fourth-year civil engineering student. The Department of Civil Engineering also used the conference to kickoff an environmental engineering stream which will be offered to second-year civil engineering students beginning fall 2003. The stream is intended to equip graduates with knowledge of municipal engineering, water quality engineering, water and wastewater treatment and environmental policy and sustainability.

Engineering Better Body Parts

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hemical engineering professor Heather Sheardown gave a presentation on The Role of the Engineer in Health Care on March 4th as one of the Science in the City lectures sponsored jointly by McMaster University and the city newspaper, The Hamilton Spectator. The presentation focused on the engineering of two very different tissues – blood vessels and corneas – including the background into the rationale and need for these tissues, and some recent develop-

Professor Heather Sheardown, Chemical Engineering, is studying biomaterials, including the use of polymers to treat cornea blindness. M

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ments from her laboratory at McMaster. “I’ve always been very interested in the body and the medical aspects of engineering, understanding the biological system and then using that. That’s really what engineers do – understand what’s going on and then translating that into something that can be used.” Sheardown, who received a BEng in chemical engineering at McMaster in 1989, went on to pursue interests in biological and medical aspects of engineering, obtaining a PhD from the University of Toronto (1995) in the study of blood contacting biomaterials. In the past 20 years, there have been rapid advancements in the fields of biology and biochemistry, she elaborated. Examples include the mapping of the human genome, the cloning of a sheep and the discovery of stem cells that are able to, in theory, become any cell in the body. “As our understanding of biology increases, there is a growing need for engineers who are able to translate these findings into treatments or cures for diseases.” Biomaterials engineering and tissue engineering are new and exciting fields that combine biology, biochemistry, chemistry, immunology with an understanding of the materials into the development of replacement organs and tissues – off the shelf hearts, livers, blood vessels, to name a few. The potential impact of tissue engineering is enormous. It has been estimated that over one half trillion dollars are spent on an annual basis in the United States alone caring for patients suffering from end-stage organ or tissue failure. U

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David Suzuki emphasizes the connections between civil engineering and environmental issues.

MacEngineer

The

The MacEngineer is printed and produced by

Managing Editor: Carm Vespi, Engineering Alumni Officer Editorial Committee: Dave S. Weaver, John Preston, Terry Milson, Carm Vespi Art Direction and Design: Wordsmith Design and Advertising Contributing Writers: Administrative Coordinators, Terry Milson, Trudi Down, The Daily News, Carm Vespi and Judy Mair

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You’re invited...

Reunion Classes of

1963 Alumni Weekend 1978 1983 Saturday June 7, 2003

YOUR REUNION IS FAST APPROACHING! Come and renew old friendships and get caught up on all the news. Find out about kids, cars, careers, etc. See how the campus and McMaster university have changed over the years. For more information contact: Ms. Carm Vespi Phone: (905) 525-9140, ext. 24906 Fax: (905) 546-5492 email: vespi@mcmaster.ca www.eng.mcmaster.ca/engalumni/

Engineering and Management classes ’64, ’79 and ’84 are also welcome to attend

MacEngineer Spring 2003  

The MacEngineer - The magazine for McMaster University's Faculty of Engineering Alumni