Hamilton, ON — McMaster University, Hamilton, Ont., and General Motors of Canada, Oshawa, Ont., have partnered to establish two new automotive engineering centres — the GM of Canada Centre for Engineering Design and the GM of Canada Centre for Corrosion Research Engineering.
The establishment of the two centres is part of GM’s broader $2.5 billion reinvestment in the company’s Canadian operations. It represents the largest and most comprehensive automotive investment in Canadian history. Following agreements with the Ontario and federal governments, GM’s Beacon Project investments will strengthen automotive engineering, R&D and manufacturing capabilities in Canada.
“GM Canada sees McMaster as a key educational partner as we work together to enhance automotive innovation and commercializable R&D in Canada,” said Al Green, vice-president, personnel and operations, GM Canada. “By linking universities, researchers, students and auto suppliers in a new Canadian Automotive Innovation Network, GM plans to strengthen innovation and competitiveness in Canada.”
“GM and McMaster have a long history of partnering on automotive engineering research,” said Peter George, president of McMaster University. The announcement "acknowledges McMaster’s leadership in the field of automotive R&D and is a significant step toward our vision of becoming the leading automotive engineering school in Canada.”
GM’s commitment to McMaster is valued at more than $60 million and includes computer-based design tools to help train a new generation of Canadian engineering students.
The GM of Canada Centre for Engineering design will be located in the new McMaster School of Engineering Practice and is scheduled to open in 2007.
The GM of Canada Centre for Corrosion Engineering Research will be located at the new McMaster Innovation Park and is scheduled to be opened in 2006.
“Engineering design is at the core of innovation in the automotive and manufacturing sectors,” said Mo Elbestawi, dean of the faculty of engineering at McMaster. “It allows engineers to apply knowledge of materials, processes, information systems, and robotics to develop new products and processes. Through the GM Canada partnership, we will significantly expand our role in developing future generations of vehicles and engineers.”
The new Centre for Engineering Design is one of three centres in the new McMaster School for Engineering Practice. The School for Engineering Practice, the first of its kind in Canada, provides a focus for state-of-the-art research and interdisciplinary education initiatives in three key areas of engineering practice: engineering and public policy, engineering entrepreneurship and innovation, and engineering design. The Xerox Centre for Engineering Entrepreneurship and Innovation was launched last fall.
McMaster, named Canada’s Research University of the Year by Research InfoSource, has world-renowned faculty and state-of-the-art research facilities. McMaster’s culture of innovation fosters a commitment to discovery and learning in teaching, research and scholarship. Based in Hamilton, the University has a student population of more than 20,000 and more than 112,000 alumni in 128 countries.