Grand River Chapter
Past Events
Thursday, 13 February 2014 09:06

2014 Annual General Meeting

Value of Drinking Water Highlights 2014 Annual General Meeting

By Kaoru Yajima, P.Eng.

On February 10, 2014, the PEO Grand River Chapter held its 2014 Annual General Meeting (AGM) at the Cutten Fields in Guelph.

To kick-off the evening, keynote speaker Mr. Rui De Carvalho, P.Eng., Senior Vice-president of R.J. Burnside & Associates Limited, and recent recipient of the University of Guelph, School of Engineering’s Engineering Medal of Achievement (the highest honour given by the School) reminded all about the value our drinking water and how fortunate Canadians are to have reliable access to this resource.

Using his team’s experiences in the African country of Mozambique, he presented the many challenges to providing adequate drinking water in developing countries, many going beyond the practice of engineering. It was good to hear that a local Canadian firm was using their engineering skills to assist those less fortunate overseas. A copy of his presentation if found here:


 Following the presentation was the presentation of awards and recognition pins. For this year’s PEO engineering scholarship, the award went to Baraa Hamodi. He is a recent graduate of Bluevale Collegiate Institute in Waterloo and presently enrolled in the Mechatronics Engineering program at the University of Waterloo (also currently on work tem in Ottawa). He demonstrated outstanding academic, fund-raising and volunteer work making him worthy of this year’s scholarship. Next, volunteer recognition pins were given to Richard Zytner, Ph.D, P.Eng., FEC for 20 years of service, Frank Hull, P.Eng., FEC for 15 years of service, and Kaoru Yajima, P.Eng. for 5 years of service to the profession. Finally, the Chapter welcomed newly licenced engineers to the profession by presenting them with their certificates.

As part of the AGM order of business, the Treasurer presented the 2013 Grand River Chapter financials and the Nominations Chair announced the Grand River Chapter Board Executive members for 2014 Both were unanimously approved by members present.

The AGM concluded with a reminder to all members to vote in this year’s PEO elections.

Published in News and Events
Sunday, 05 May 2013 09:15

Skyjack Tour Spring 2013

Tour Organized by Jonathan Velasco, P.Eng


After a successful tour in the fall of 2012, Skyjack opened its doors again to members of PEO Grand River Chapter for another sky high experience on April 26, 2013.


Skyjack Plant 2 in Guelph is one of the company’s several manufacturing facilities worldwide that builds the self-propelled scissor lifts, articulated booms, telescopic booms and telehandlers. Skyjack began manufacturing scissor lift work platforms in 1986 and through the 1990's grew to over 30% market share to become a world leader in this sector of the aerial lift industry. Skyjack became part of the Linamar family in 2002 and since then, continued its dominance in the industry.


The tour host and VP of engineering Ed Lambert, together with Skyjack president Brad Boehler and their competent engineering team presented Skyjack’s history, the growth and stability of the company, the array of products and its worldwide presence as market leader.


PEO members were shown the welding, painting, assembly and testing of the different Skyjack models. A feedback from one participant states “The tour was educational and well organized. It tells me of smart leadership. My tour guide was awesome, friendly, knowledgeable and entertaining. I wish I could learn more about your operation, culture, and philosophy.”


The finale was an adrenalin scissor lift ride 50 feet up in the sunny Friday afternoon. According to another participant, the exciting ride at the end of the tour drove home the product.



   Skyjack President Brad Boehler welcomes the PEO members 



         Skyjack ride on the scissor lifts at the end of the tour

Published in News and Events
Friday, 12 April 2013 00:00

UW Engineering Hosts 2013 AGM

by Kaoru Yajima, P.Eng

On February 11, the University of Waterloo’s Faculty of Engineering played host to the PEO Grand River Chapter’s 2013 Annual General Meeting. Our keynote speaker was Professor Teertstra, P.Eng., of the University of Waterloo who gave a presentation on the new E5 engineering building on campus. The building’s purpose was to provide space to facilitate as many 4th year engineering projects as they could, for example the Midnight Sun, Mini-Baja and the Concrete Toboggan to name a few. It was also nice to hear that the design of the building had input from 4th year students. Some of the student teams were on hand to showcase their impressive projects and the Chapter wishes them good luck as they compete in Provincial and National Competitions.

While seeing the new building and the projects was great, the AGM also had its order of business to deal with.

We helped welcome the most recent newly licensed engineers to the profession by presenting them their certificates – turned out it was good incentive for those 4th year students watching. We also awarded two first year PEO engineering student scholarship prizes, both to students at the University of Guelph (see related article). On behalf of the PEO head office, we also presented a 10-year volunteer recognition award to Amanda Froese, P.Eng., for her volunteer contributions to the profession. Congratulations to all.

Last but not least, we swore in the new Chapter Board Executive. These volunteers will serve on the Board for the next year and they will be spending their personal time to help promote the profession of engineering within the chapter boundaries.

If you would more information on the proceedings please feel free to contact us through our website.

Published in Past events in review
Friday, 12 April 2013 00:00

National Engineering Month 2013 Review

by Ala Bashatly, EIT

KNEXNational Engineering Month was celebrated with yet another exciting K’NEX event.

The bridge building contest took place at THE MUSEUM in Kitchener on March 23rd and 24th from 10am- 5pm. The K’NEX bridge building is one of the best ways to introduce the youth to the world of Engineering!

The event brought out the youth’s imagination and creativity. Children learned about the various fields of engineering from our volunteers. Parents, guardians and volunteers taught the children different techniques for building a strong bridge. Children built bridges using the K’NEX components which are then tested by the PEO-Grand River Chapter’s volunteers.

Pushing the envelope this year, the bridges were loaded with bricks. Structures that were able to withstand the maximum load of bricks entered a draw to win three prizes. First place prize was a K’NEX Roller Coaster set. Second place was a Ferris wheel set and the third place was multi- models Tub set.

As part of the National Engineering Month event held at The Museum, Conestoga College brought a Denso industrial robot that challenged participants to a game of tic-tac-toe. Participants learned various applications of industrial robots while gaining an appreciation for their versatility. Each participant was able to observe the robot functioning, the control system governing its motion, and the vision system used to inform the robot of real time events. The Denso Robot software was loaded to a PLC- programmable logic controller to play games in hard and easy mode. Children were thrilled to play tic-tac-toe with the robot.

Scoreboard: Draws: 47, Participants – 14, Robot – 30. A good weekend for the robot!

Greg Burns-VPO Engineering Society from Conestoga College controlled the robot on Saturday. Sonny Modi-VPI Engineering Society from Conestoga College did a great job setting up and demonstrating the Denso Robot on Sunday.

Sunday was highlighted by the First Robotics Frisbee Thrower Robot. REBotics team from Eastwood Collegiate Institute in Kitchener, and Brad Morris from University of Waterloo demonstrated the robot’s various mobility skills and high precision in throwing Frisbee discs.

The event was a great success with the support of University of Waterloo students.

Special thanks to the fans of the K’NEX event that came for more fun at THE MUSEUM!

Click on an image to see full gallery.

Published in Events Held

When: March 23, 24, 2013. Time: 10AM-5PM.

Where: The Museum, 10 King Street West, Kitchener, ON, N2G 1A3

Come visit THE MUSEUM in downtown Kitchener where Professional Engineers of Ontario-Grand River Chapter will be holding a bridge building using K’NEX building tools. There will be prizes for the strongest structure.

Published in Events Held
Wednesday, 06 March 2013 16:41

2013 Annual General Meeting Review

University of Waterloo, Engineering 5
Monday, February 11, 2013
7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

The University of Waterloo Student Design Centre (SDC) was a great location for the 2013 AGM. Dr. Peter Teerstra, Director of the SDC spoke about the Centre and all the great student engineering projects.

At the AGM, 24 new engineers received their framed PEO license. @ Univeristy of Guelph students received their Grand River Chapter scholarships and Amanda Froese, P.Eng. received a Chapter service recognition award. A new Chapter Board was acclaimed.

Published in Events Held
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

PEO Mentorship Program

By Matt Irvine, P.Eng.

Last spring Grand River Chapter launched our inaugural Mentorship Program. We did so hoping that we would receive interest from at least eight mentors and eight mentees; we ended up with a total of 40 EITs and P.Engs registering in the program. After such a successful first round concluded in December at the Mentorship Appreciation Dinner, we are now preparing to roll out the second round of the Mentorship Program shortly.

As a reminder, this program is designed to link licensed Professional Engineers with Engineering Interns to provide guidance and support to interns as they progress toward their professional engineer licence. Mentors/mentees are expected to meet for at least two hours each month and the meetings can be held in person, or by phone/email/Skype – whatever works for the mentor/mentee pair.

The program feedback from both mentors and mentees has been overwhelmingly positive, so if you feel that this program is something you would like to learn more about, please don't hesitate to contact me directly. Otherwise, watch for an email blast in the coming weeks with specific instructions on how to register for the next round of our Mentorship Program.

Published in Past events in review
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Government Liaison Program (GLP)

By Gabriel Tse, P.Eng.

Participants at the first Western Region GLP Academy held in Hamilton

Participants at the first Western Region GLP Academy held in Hamilton

The first GLP academy was held in Hamilton in January 2011. The keynote speaker was the honourable Greg Sorbara. This first-ever academy in the Western Region was well attended. Representing the Grand River Chapter were Gabe Tse and Harmail Basi. GR GLP is growing.

This is an exciting time to join us and make your voice heard. Be part of a team to work on policies that are dear to your hearts. GLP committee members work diligently and closely with all six MPPs in our area. You have the opportunity to learn, participate and contribute to the issues that affect your daily lives and your professional practice.

Gabriel Tse, P.Eng., with Michael Chan, MPP at GLP

Gabriel Tse, P.Eng., with Michael Chan, MPP

We are growing beyond being just a team meeting with our MPPs on a regular basis to working with our elected members on private members’ bills. Challenge the thinking process, and instill new ideas to help our members in their research. Talk to our GLP committee members to learn more, to explore and experience the excitement.

We are planning for the second annual Western Region GLP academy. Stay tuned to this news column for update information.

Published in Past events in review
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Mannheim Water Treatment Tour

By Kaoru Yajima, P.Eng.

Around 45 chapter members gathered at the Mannheim water treatment plant in the evening of May 30 to learn how water is supplied and treated in the Region of Waterloo. Two tours, lasting one hour each, were conducted, one following the other.

Each tour began with an explanation of the water sources and treatment technologies used to produce drinking water. A discussion on emerging issues in drinking water treatment was also included.

After the presentation, a guided tour of the plant was made where the coagulation, flocculation, sedimentation, ozonation, filtration and UV disinfection processes of the treatment process were viewed.

Tour participants observe the UV disinfection process

Tour participants observe the UV disinfection process.

Many good questions were asked throughout the tour that reflected the diverse background of engineering disciplines represented by the tour participants.

Positive verbal feedback was received by many participants and additional tours may be planned in the future.

Published in Past events in review
Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00

Career Fair 2012, Career Education Council

By Peter S. Chisholm, P.Eng., FEC

With the Upper Grand District School Board, the Wellington Catholic District School Board, and the CAREER EDUCATION COUNCIL, Career Fair 2012 reminded student attendees it is “Your Future Your Choice”. The fair was held on November 21, 2012 at Centennial Collegiate Vocational Institute.

Host high school student volunteers ushered exhibitors, visiting students and parents through a no-cost “one-stop opportunity” for insight to employment, business and services offered by 80+ businesses, educational institutions and community organizations. Attended by 600+students and parents, the 80+ volunteer exhibitors showcased a broad diversity of career opportunities for attendees to consider while planning for the future.

The exhibit by the Grand River Chapter, Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) focused on engineering careers in conservation. Set in the Heritage Grand River Watershed, partnerships between professional engineers and conservation professionals were highlighted in a diversity of conservation projects: example projects included sewage treatment, management of river water quality, flood control, improved fisheries habitat for fish spawning and fish-food production, maintenance of fish populations, geophysical exploration related to groundwater protection and safety in foundations of structures. Numerous visitors to the PEO exhibit expressed both interest and surprise at the extent of partnerships between engineering and other conservation professionals in their home watershed.

Published in Past events in review
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