Siemens announces the donation of its state-of-the-art product life-cycle management software, the same software that is used by Airbus and other industry leaders. From the left: Janina Kugel, chief human resources officer and member of the managing board of Siemens AG, Faisal Kazi, president and CEO Siemens Canada, Cheryl Jensen Algonquin College president, Claude Brulé, vice-president academic Algonquin College and Stéphane Chayer vice-president building technologies division Canada and governmental affairs Quebec. Photo credit: Tyler Kidd

Siemens’ state of the art 3D modelling software has been donated to Algonquin College and will be available for students to use later this year.

Officially, the grant comes from Siemens PLM Software which develops leading product life-cycle management software.

The event was held in the DARE district “incubator,” a space designed specifically for students and staff to foster innovation and creativity. About 100 students and staff were in attendance.

The software will allow students to factor everything from engineering and design to supply chain management. It is the same program used by aviation giant Airbus when they developed the A380, the largest passenger plane currently in use.

The same software is also used by major auto manufacturers.

By donating this industry-leading software, Siemens is able to “support more practical experience outside the classroom,” explained Janina Kugel, chief human resource officer and member of the managing board for Siemens AG.

When asked when the software would be available, Kugel explained it was a licensing issue at this point and the college would soon have access.

“I might have to return [to the college] next year?” replied the student who posed the question.

“You won’t have to wait that long,” claimed Cheryl Jensen, president of Algonquin College.

Also in attendance from Siemens were Faisal Kazi, president and chief executive officer Siemens Canada, as well as Stéphane Chayer, vice-president building technologies division Canada and governmental affairs Quebec.

Asking the students in attendance what they wanted to do with their educations, Kugel noted that students talked more about the impact of their work, focusing less on their direct field of study. As an example, students talked about the importance of working for socially responsible companies, as well as companies that take advantage of automation once they graduate.

The new DARE district provides a chance for the college to attract industry leaders, explained Jensen.

As part of the event, students were able to ask question directly to the executives. Students were particularly interested in getting insider advice on what companies are looking for in their employers.

Chayer was quick to respond with “mindset and sub-skills.” He elaborated that in a large company you need to have an enthusiastic approach and that playing to your skill set will allow you to stand out.

Fazi added that with the quick pace, being flexible is incredibly important. By continuing to apply your skills you can foster innovation as new opportunities arise. He also praised authenticity, claiming that employers are quick to recognize this trait as important.

When asked directly about the concerns of the digital transformation, Kugel quickly stepped in to remind students not to worry. She added that her generation has worried enough for everyone about the new age of technology. By having an open mind students can avoid the technological ignorance of the baby boomers and the struggles that they faced.

Today’s announcement was made possible by the partnership between Siemens and Algonquin College which dates back to 2012. As a result the college saves $3 million annually on building systems operations and has seen significant cost reduction through deferred maintenance plans.