(Sault Ste. Marie, ON October 18, 2023) – Today, representatives from Heliene and Sault College joined together to announce a partnership aimed at supporting students. Understanding the importance of hands-on learning, Heliene has generously donated re-purposed robotics equipment valued at $150,000, helping to enhance the educational experience of our students while strengthening opportunities for future collaboration.
This partnership reflects the College’s goal of establishing a connection within industry to further enrich its students' skills in an ever-evolving technological landscape. Students from a variety of programs, including Robotics and Automation, Automated Manufacturing and Bachelor of Engineering in Mechatronics, will benefit from the equipment donation incorporating them into lab work, class projects, and applied research projects with industry partners.
With the donated equipment, Sault College will have the opportunity to teach students on another brand of robot that is used by companies both locally in Sault Ste. Marie and around the world. “Diversifying our robots allows students to expand their learning and gain an understanding about the differences in hardware and software and how to adapt to these changes,” said Donovan Kennedy, Professor and Coordinator at Sault College. “With this partnership, we also see a tremendous opportunity for workforce development as our students may go on to work at Heliene and they will gain an understanding of this technology. We will also explore opportunities to provide industry training on this equipment furthering supporting Heliene in its training initiatives,” Donovan added.
“Nowadays any and all technology companies struggle to hire and retain electrical and mechatronics technicians for their operations. For us at Heliene that is exacerbated by being located in Northern Ontario; however, having Sault College in town and collaborating directly in the learning of its students provides us with two important opportunities: on one side looking to hire its graduates and on the other side giving back to our community, creating a legacy to boost workforce development,” said Martin Pochtaruk, President and CEO of Heliene.
Sault College looks forward to expanding our joint efforts in education and expresses appreciation for this donation. "We are grateful to Heliene for their generous contribution to our college and for recognizing the value of supporting experiential learning opportunities for our students,” said David Orazietti, President, Sault College. “This partnership highlights our collective commitment towards fostering innovation and growth and ensuring our students are well-prepared and versatile in their skills to support meaningful careers,” he added.