Centennial College’s WIMTACH provides students with the opportunity to build a professional network as they continue or begin their careers. WIMTACH applied research projects place students in the spotlight to be seen for their skills, knowledge and expertise by WIMTACH industry partners that are looking to further their projects towards commercialization.
iMerciv, a Canadian company that creates wearable assistive technology for people with visual and hearing impairments, is one such partner. Its founder, Bin Liu, hired two Centennial College students from the Game Programming program – Frederico and Shyam – to support his latest project, Mapinhood, a pedestrian-focused navigation system.
Bin Liu, CEO and co-founder of iMerciv, received the opportunity to network and connect with Centennial College students working on various WIMTACH projects due to being an industry partner. Shyam and Frederico were working diligently on the Book-A-Ride project developing the web and mobile applications that would prompt users to choose travel destinations.
It was this association with WIMTACH alongside their own diligence, success and expertise that brought them to Bin’s attention. After doing two interviews each, both students were hired. They begin their new positions next month.
“It feels like we’re in a real company. I have some experience working in a company and I feel the same way as we are here: we have to do our job, report to the manager etc. I feel like I’m starting my professional career,” explains Frederico in an interview.
Similarly, Shyam explains that there is “no one focus in the work [because] we’re doing and working with a lot of technologies, different groups of people with different backgrounds and different projects. The learning is always inclusive.”
College applied research departments like WIMTACH bring the real world to campus. Instead of students having to wait until after graduation to look for job experience, WIMTACH offers it to them before that. While the projects are all related to digital health and innovation, they are all highly collaborative and require different skillsets and approaches. Therefore, everyone has valuable experience to offer and valuable experience to gain.
“You always have someone you can look up to and ask questions. There are professors that are available to talk and respond to questions because most people who at WIMTACH as students don’t have prior work experience outside. Centennial College involves everyone in the project and to have [access to] their expertise is invaluable,” said Shyam.
Hailing from Brazil, Frederico has seen research departments like WIMTACH and the impact they have on students. He describes how students “can work on something whether they’re professional projects or research visits about new technology” because it makes them “feel like they’re part of something, solving a [real world] problem.”
With a new horizon for them around the corner, both Frederico and Shyam express feeling prepared because of the numerous skills they gained working at WIMTACH. Shyam was “afraid to talk to clients” before working at WIMTACH; now he’s comfortable because everyone is involved and “you really get to know how business conversations work.” Frederico says that he developed and improved his soft and technical skills, including his work with angular JS.
With its proven track record for success, Centennial College’s WIMTACH sets students up for success wherever they are with their careers. WIMTACH is proud to offer valuable collaborative, experiential learning opportunities to Centennial students to take with them into the classroom and beyond.
Congratulations to Frederico and Shyam!