Creative mix is ap­peal­ing

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Rear View -

Dr YAT Choy Wong, 42, a se­nior lec­turer in me­chan­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing at Swin­burne Univer­sity, feels stu­dents con­sid­er­ing an en­gi­neer­ing ca­reer should def­i­nitely think out­side the square.

Swin­burne Univer­sity of­fers un­der­grad­u­ate en­gi­neer­ing cour­ses in the fol­low­ing dis­ci­plines: Avi­a­tion, Bio­med­i­cal En­gi­neer­ing, Civil En­gi­neer­ing, Elec­tron­ics and Com­puter Sys­tems, Elec­tri­cal En­gi­neer­ing, Me­chan­i­cal En­gi­neer­ing, Pho­ton­ics, Prod­uct De­sign En­gi­neer­ing, Ro­bot­ics and Mecha­tron­ics En­gi­neer­ing, Science, and Telecom­mu­ni­ca­tion and Net­work En­gi­neer­ing.

Dr Wong has been a lec­turer at the univer­sity since 1996 and he rec­om­mends Prod­uct De­sign en­gi­neer­ing as a unique course that would ap­peal to peo­ple with a creative bent.

The course com­prises a com­bi­na­tion of two tra­di­tion­ally sep­a­rate fields: en­gi­neer­ing with its sci­en­tific ma­te­rial and man­u­fac­tur­ing knowl­edge and in­dus­trial de­sign with its hu­man- cen­tred approach.

The course is 50 per cent me­chan­i­cal and 50 per cent de­sign,’’ Dr Wong says.

Th­ese two dis­ci­plines have been brought to­gether to pro­duce a new grad­u­ate who will de­velop com­pet­i­tive prod­ucts in both qual­ity and de­sign. The sub­jects stud­ied dur­ing the course are equally shared by the Fac­ulty of En­gi­neer­ing and In­dus­trial Sci­ences and the Fac­ulty of De­sign.

Th­ese sub­jects have a fo­cus on creative de­sign, en­gi­neer­ing science, ma­te­rial and man­u­fac­tur­ing process se­lec­tion, project man­age­ment and in­no­va­tion.

‘‘ This course of­fers the best of both worlds,’’ he says.

But de­spite en­gi­neer­ing cour­ses of­fer­ing in­no­va­tive sub­jects and in­dus­try of­fer­ing highly com­pet­i­tive re­mu­ner­a­tion, it seems that more work needs to be done to en­cour­age peo­ple to un­der­take th­ese qual­i­fi­ca­tions.

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