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Andrea Pedroza, Oscar Silva, Jordyn Mcdonald and Salem JabrAndrea Pedroza, Oscar Silva, Jordyn Mcdonald and Salem Jabr show off the watches and plaque they received for a second-place finish in the case competition of the Institute of Industrial Engineers national conference.

Second-place showing in national case competition “something to brag about” for industrial engineering students

If you find emergency room wait times getting shorter, the professional to thank may not be in medicine, but in engineering.

A group of industrial engineering students from the University of Windsor learned their optimization skills apply as much to the hospital as to the factory during a case competition at the Institute of Industrial Engineers national conference in Toronto, January 23 to 26.

UWindsor’s four-person team—Salem Jabr, Jordyn Mcdonald, Andrea Pedroza and Oscar Silva—finished second overall, and first among Ontario universities in a competition set in Toronto East General Hospital.

Team members toured the facility and reviewed floor plans and were given four hours to devise suggestions to reduce the length of patient stays. Their presentation included better processes to improve the flow of patients, consolidation of waiting rooms, and more efficient workspaces for staff.

“There was a lot of constricted space,” said Silva.

The students were proud that Windsor made a good showing, despite having one of the smallest delegations at the conference.

“We came back with something to brag about and made a name for our school,” said Mcdonald, a third-year student who hopes to bring a larger contingent with her to next year’s event.

Professor Jill Urbanic said the results show that Windsor Engineering provides a good education.

“When our students compete, we see with every discipline, we are always contenders,” she said. “I’m really very proud of them.”