Ziad KobtiZiad Kobti, director of the School of Computer Science, welcomes the opening of 300 Ouellette Ave. to its Master of Applied Computing program.

Downtown home provides computer science program with room to grow

The School of Computer Science is celebrating the new downtown home for its Master of Applied Computing (MAC) program, with 300 Ouellette Ave. hosting nearly 700 full-time students pursuing education in software development and advanced computing.

“This is a highly sought-after program that in 2020 ranked as the top sixth destination school for international students on the ApplyBoard and in 2022 the School of Computer Science programs ranked in the Top 20 for the second time in Macleans magazine,” says Ziad Kobti, director of the School of Computer Science.

“MAC’s goal is to deliver highly trained graduates in computer science with skillsets that include cloud computing, machine learning and artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, web and mobile application development, and data science.”

The downtown space will allow the program to expand industry partnerships.

“We want to invite industry to come, collaborate, and complement the vision of the computing hub,” says Dr. Kobti.

“The primary goal of the space is to build a simulated professional work environment for students and industry to collaborate in the development of new software projects and offer training on the latest computing technologies. This is part of the work-integrated learning experience we present to computer science students and local industry.”

Kobti says 300 Ouellette will provide services including meeting and workspaces, consulting, expert faculty members, customized training, and research collaborations.

“We’ve already collaborated with IBM, Blackberry, GlassHouse Systems, and Rocket Innovation Studio, to name a few,” he says. “These prestigious companies are at the top of their field employing the latest computing technologies and have already collaborated with CS providing students with advanced training and internship opportunities.”

Students in the MAC program undergo lab-based applied training for 12 months followed by an internship of four to eight months. To date, 90 per cent of students searching for internships in their final term this fall have found a paid placement with industry.

“After a very competitive selection process, these excellent international students come into the MAC program with a lot of experience already — they are filling the gaps with industry who are facing shortages for skilled employees with advanced computing talent and software development skills,” Kobti says.

“We are always looking for new internship opportunities for these highly experienced students and invite interested industry to partner with us.”

The new space will house dedicated MAC faculty and staff members as well as professional spaces for internships and work-integrated learning experiences.

MAC students will call 300 Ouellette home and will take classes in Windsor Hall at the intersection of Ferry and Pitt streets.

Industry interested in hiring co-op or internship students may contact Johanna Beneteau at Johanna.Beneteau@uwindsor.ca.

Industry or public sector organizations looking to provide work-integrated learning experiences or locate in the building should contact Kobti at kobti@uwindsor.ca.