IDEA programs are built around project-based learning and provide workshops, mentorship, and experiential learning opportunities for students to explore engineering, design, making, and manufacturing. Here, you can access all the equipment you need to develop prototypes and personal projects.
A multidisciplinary initiative from Dalhousie’s Faculty of Engineering and NSCAD, the programs help everyone develop a personal toolbox of skills to support any career path.
Sandboxes are collaborative spaces that bring together students, mentors, and external advisors to take business concepts from idea to execution in a creative, problem-solving and innovative process. IDEA Sandbox programs introduce students to innovation and entrepreneurship, helping you develop a toolbox which you can apply to your own ventures.
The integration of product design, engineering, and business are key components in the design, development, and commercialization of successful products. Our faculty mentors reflect IDEA’s commitment to multidisciplinary collaboration, with each member offering a unique perspective on product development.
Clifton Johnston – Engineering: As Academic Director of the Emera ideaHUB and NSERC Chair in Design Engineering, Clifton Johnston (PhD, MSc, BSc) oversees program develop for residents of the Emera ideaHUB and students within IDEA, and integrates new design, innovation, and entrepreneurship programming into existing engineering curricula.
Glen Hougan – Design: Glen Hougan (MEDes, BSc) is a product and service designer, with a background in human factors, user experience, product development, and design thinking. He is an Associate Professor in Product Design at NSCAD University, and the principle of Wellspan Research and Design – a design consultancy focusing on healthcare.
David C. Roach – Business: As an Assistant Professor in the Rowe School of Business, David C. Roach (PhD, MBA, BEng), runs MBA courses in entrepreneurship, innovation management, and new venture creation. With his background in engineering and product development, David brings a skillful and well-rounded viewpoint to the IDEA team.
The MakerSpace in the Emera IDEA Building is student-staffed and provides you with all the equipment you need to develop prototypes and personal projects. Access to the space and machinery is free to Dalhousie Engineering students. Participants are required to complete an orientation session covering general workshop safety, basic hand tool training, and MakerSpace policies. Machine-specific training is offered in workshops, with separate training sessions for: woodworking, 3D printing, laser cutting, electronics and sewing.