Industry-Academe Linkage

Activities

Since its inception, the Linkage Office has been successful in setting-up and facilitating the implementation and completion of the following:

Practicum Objectives
  • To expose the student to the actual technical and managerial aspects of the various Engineering professions.
  • To enable the student to gain experience, relate and apply the theories learned in school to real industrial situations and problems.
  • To give the student an insight of the various operations, processes, techniques and controls presently used in industry.
  • To expose the student to the latest types of products / technology produced in the industry.
  • To develop and instill in the student a positive attitude, self-confidence and self-motivation required of a responsible professional in handling tasks.
  • To impress on the student the importance of human relations in the work-place or environment;
  • To provide the student opportunity for career exploration or contact with potential employers.
  • To provide Industry with potential recruits possessing high-quality skills.

Every school year, engineering students have successfully undergone and completed the On-the-Job Training (OJT) Program in member-companies. For SY 2001-2002 and onwards, the following OJT duration is being implemented:

On-the-Job Training Program Duration
Chemical Engineering 12 weeks, starting June
Civil Engineering 12 weeks, starting June
Electronics and Communications Engineering 12 weeks, starting June
Industrial Engineering 12 weeks, starting June
Manufacturing Engineering and Management 45 weeks, starting June
Mechanical Engineering 12 weeks, starting January

For students pursuing the Master of Engineering Program (MEP), the completion of a minimum of 500 man-hours of practicum and a special project is required. The special practicum project must demonstrate the MEP student's ability to solve actual problems using the theories and methods learned. The project may be a solution to a specific problem in the Host Company.

Faculty members are also encouraged to participate in the immersion program. Experience and knowledge learned while working in the industry enhance the classroom and laboratory classes, resulting in curriculum improvement and development of additional training materials.

Objectives of the Projects, Theses, and Researches
  • To enhance present skills and abilities, leading to the application of theories learned and to actual implementation of projects.
  • To verify the validity of theories learned in actual project design and implementation.
  • To do research and prepare appropriate studies to help meet the needs of management and industry.
  • To organize, present, and write project reports acceptable to faculty and mentors from the industry.
  • To offer joint research program to industries interested in assessing the impact of corporate learning environments on the development of productivity in the industry.

Through the Linkage Program, undergraduate/graduate theses, as well as research projects of students and faculty members have been completed. These papers cover a wide variety of engineering areas:

  • Chemical engineering - energy, environmental engineering, corrosion, biotechnology, and process control
  • Civil engineering - structural engineering, construction technology and management, hydraulics and water resources, transportation engineering, and geotechnical engineering
  • Electronics and communications - electronic systems, communications system, digital signal processing, and internetworking and multimedia technologies
  • Industrial engineering - production systems, ergonomics/product design, and operations research/management science
  • Manufacturing engineering and management - mechatronics and robotics, computer-aided engineering, finite-element modeling, and intelligent controls systems
  • Mechanical engineering - mechatronics, energy and environmental technology, and mechanical design

A thesis is performed by a student or a group for a period of one-year. A project proposal coming from an IAL member-company is given to the students for research. A company representative serves as the contact person and adviser of the student(s). On the academic side, a faculty member of a specific department is assigned as adviser of the same student(s), as provided in the thesis guidelines.

IAL member-companies can avail of the University's resources for any possible areas of research collaboration with either the faculty or the student depending on the requirement. A faculty in-charge overlooks the activities performed by the students.

Plant Visits

It has become traditional for all the departments of the College of Engineering to conduct plant visits by students and faculty. These visits or tours expose the students and faculty to actual industrial settings.

Seminars, Lectures, and Exhibits

Symposia and lectures dealing with different fields of engineering have been conducted in campus with active participation from the industry. This is another way of keeping the faculty and students in the university attuned to the changing nature of the world of work. Conversely, faculty members have disseminated to the public various engineering and engineering-related researches and development from the academe's point of view.

Exhibits displayed by industrial companies have become an attraction during the Engineering Week and during the special celebrations of the engineering students' organizations. The Linkage Office also manages the exhibits of the College of Engineering for the annual DOST Science and Technology Fair. These exhibits highlight the joint research projects of undergraduate/graduate students and faculty.

Objectives of the Training, Consultancy, and Graduate Program
  • To deliver the educational services designed to satisfy the needs or to solve the human-resource problems of the industry.
  • To indicate and analyze the attitudes to be developed, the concepts to be learned, and the skills to be mastered.
  • To upgrade the technical skills of prospective employees in industry.
  • To provide solutions to the industry's problem of increasing costs from in-house training or retraining of employees.
  • To provide opportunity for company employees to pursue coursework towards graduate degrees in Engineering.
  • To contribute to the enhancement of present skills and abilities, leading to positions of greater responsibility.

The Center for Engineering Research, Training, and Consultancy (CERTC) of the College provides continuing professional training programs and seminars custom-built to address the needs of engineers and managers relevant to productivity and efficiency. The College's Graduate Studies Program, on the other hand, extends flexibility to the graduate courses and offerings depending on industry requirements.

The IAL Office organizes the initial-planning stage of collaboration with the member-company interested in the program. Representatives from the College of Engineering and from industry meet and exchange information concerning the needs of the industry and available programs of the college.

Are the perceived needs the real needs of the industry? Answering this question requires the ability to recognize existing or potential problems within the industry that can be solved through Human Resources (HR) development. It may take both the industry and academe, working together in an open and trusting environment, to identify the real needs and to derive program goals from these needs. HR specialists or other interested officials from the company may choose to be actively involved or designate certain employees of the company to be involved in the development of the program.

Whoever is brought into the construction, development, implementation, and evaluation process must have the necessary expertise and the necessary authority to work on the linkage program. It is extremely important to select and involve people who have the power to implement or veto decisions reached by participants involved. Many past programs have remained in the drawing board because the people involved do not have the power to authorize its implementation, thereby wasting time, talent, and money.

Suggested Agenda for the Initial Meeting
  • What is the likelihood of the company participating in the program?
  • What human-resource problems does the company encounter?
  • What can the COE do to help solve these problems?
  • What are the training needs of the company?
  • What can COE do to assist the company in their training programs?
  • What should be the goals of the linkage program: training or graduate studies?
  • Approximately how many employees will participate in the program?
  • Which company official will be actively involved in the development and implementation of the program?
  • What resources will be provided by the company? By COE?
  • Will the employees be selected to participate or will they be allowed to enroll by themselves in the program?
  • What are the educational backgrounds of the participating employees?
  • Who pays tuition/training costs, the company or the employees?
  • Who makes the final decision that authorizes the employees to participate in the program?
  • What Program Design Option should be included: contract/exclusive or regular program, on-site or on-campus instruction?
  • What deadline, if any, exists for program development, or for program implementation?
  • What criteria will be used to evaluate the program?
Program Design Options
  • Contract/Exclusive Program or Regular Program. Contract/exclusive program consists of classes or training modules in which the enrollment is limited to persons employed by the company with which the contract is made. Anyone can enroll in regular programs and being employee of the company with which the contract was made is not a condition for enrollment. Some training programs can be credited as a graduate course if examination/s and other written and/or oral requirements are completed.
  • On-site Instruction or On-campus Instruction. As a matter of convenience for its employees, the company may stipulate that instruction takes place on-site. Usually costs are reduced if the company provides the facilities for training programs. However, some companies prefer on-campus instruction because they want their employees to be exposed to an academic environment or they want their employees to interact with a cross-section of people. On-site instruction may not be an option when the participants come from several companies; unless, of course, an arrangement can be done to conduct the graduate or training program in facilities provided by one of the companies and employees from the other companies are allowed to attend.
Resources, Costs, and Deadlines

During the initial talk, topics that need to be addressed before writing the first draft of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for the program are resources, costs and deadlines. Resources necessary for the development and implementation of the program must be identified and a tentative agreement reached to define the resources provided by DLSU and those provided by the industry. Once the resources are determined, an estimate of direct and indirect costs can be prepared. Finally, a timetable should be established showing not only the sequence of events, but also the deadline for the completion of the development and the implementation of the program.

Faculty Involvement

The faculty's primary role is to develop the training modules and to teach the developed modules. It does, however, emphasize that faculty influence is greatest in the classroom where applicability and feasibility of the developed modules are tested. Selection of faculty are based on:

  • Their ability to adapt to new teaching situations.
  • Their compatibility with the participants that may or may not consist of traditional students.
  • Their willingness to revise their teaching techniques and instructional materials.
  • Their interests in keeping pace with technological and professional advances in their fields of specialization.
  • Their ability as industry consultants to provide advanced technical skills.