Over the years Engineering has become one of the most sought after program to study and the most expensive undergraduate program to pursue (ranging from 10k-15k in tuition alone in Ontario.) It has also become very competitive to get into one. To get into a good Engineering school like U of T, Waterloo, Queen’s etc, you need a competitive average of 90 or higher,.any other school at least an 80 plus.So how does one get into this program?
As a mother of two kids who have chosen to become engineers, my son just finished his masters and my daughter started University this year to pursue a degree in Industrial Engineering ,I thought I will share what I have learnt about preparing and getting into an engineering program.
- Getting good grades in core math and science subjects is the number one priority.Help your child do their very best in school by providing help getting involved in their work and offering a good place to study.
- If your school offers and your child is upto the challenge it can be beneficial to do AP or IB courses as it prepares them for rigorous work and in some cases can be counted as a university credit.If your school doesn’t offer these don’t worry my son got into the best engineering program in the country by getting good grades in the normal university courses the school offered.
- Choose courses that help with an engineering program.Apart from the pre requisite math and science courses courses like computer science, data management are important for an engineering degree.
- If its possible do one or two grade 12 courses in Grade 11 so by the time you start grade 12 you already have one or two credits completed. This way you have some spare time to concentrate on the rest of the subjects.
- Doing the various math and science competitions right throughout high school. These contests are hard to score but just saying that you did them look good on a university application and lets the university know you are serious about STEM. You don’t have to report the scores to any university so it doesn’t matter if you didn’t do that well.
- Doing the research! As a parent its our responsibility to research about the programs and university that is right for our child.This is why going to a university fair is important. If you’re thinking of applying soon, the Ontario University Fair will be held from Sept 23rd-25th at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. There will be representatives from each school and respective program there to answer your questions. It’s a good idea to go with your child, even if you aren’t applying to university this year.You can also find out about the ranking of each university in the macleans guide. I might be biased but to me the best university for engineering is University of Toronto! They have one of the best engineering programs in the world!
- Finally applying to the chosen programs! Now that you have done the research, and choosen the programs its time to do the application. Certain schools such as Waterloo and UofT require the applicant to write short responses on why they are interested in engineering. UofT also has a mandatory online application called the personal profile. Here students are asked questions and are expected to answer them on video under 2-3 minutes. Questions include simple concepts to see how the student problem solves, as well as questions regarding their interest and experience in STEM. We made sure that we applied to at least five programs in various universities. One top school, a few safety schools that we have a good chance of getting into and one back up school just in case. Take time to prepare a good application and apply through OUAC.
Researching about universities is something I love doing and quite good at. So if you need any help with anything I will be more than happy to assist you, leave a comment below. I hope you found this post helpful and I wish your kids every success in their path to becoming an engineer!