With technology evolving every day, the workforce is always in need of skilled people to build, maintain and operate machinery, robots and computers.

A perfect program for individuals who want to be on the cutting edge of technology is BCIT’s Mechatronics and Robotics Diploma program.

The program is designed to encompass all forms of technology. According to program head Brent Dunn, computers, electronics and mechanical equipment can all work as a system.

“The goal of the program is to train students to work with those major systems,” says Dunn.

These systems can be quite diverse and complex, such as underwater robotics, but they can also be as basic as the power seat in your car. It’s essentially an electronic device that moves back and forth and has several different settings.

Nick Topouzis is in the final semester of the program. He says it’s very challenging but he’s thrilled to be enrolled in something that will land him a job in field that he loves.

“I wanted to do something exciting, something that would make me look forward to going to work, so I met with a BCIT adviser and she led me to this program — and it was exactly what I was looking for,” says Topouzis.

Students in the program have a wide variety of options as to what to do after graduation.

“We’ve had some grads who were really busy with the Olympics building camera stabilizers, which are actually used in a lot of action movies. We have some grads who are working on computer controlled machines for prosthetic devices, and some that help build exoskeletons used for helping disabled people walk,” says Dunn.

Grads can also choose to transfer to universities and grad schools. After finishing the Mechatronics and Robotics program at BCIT, they can roll right into the third year of an engineering program.

Topouzis says he’s still weighing his options.

“I plan on looking at the job market. I’m really interested in high-tech research and development, but I may have to get an engineering degree beforehand.”

For more information, visit www.bcit.ca/study/programs/7340diplt.

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