Graduate Research Days 2021

Banner featuring Engineering graduate students

Passionate about conducting research through a master’s or doctoral degree in engineering? You will not want to miss Graduate Research Days 2021 (GRD2021) on February 18, and February 19, 2021. GRD2021 is a unique opportunity to experience virtually what U of T Engineering can offer you as a graduate student. You will be able to engage with staff, faculty, and graduate students to learn more about UofT Engineering.

While many top applicants to U of T Engineering will be invited to attend this event, a limited number of spots are available for those who have not yet applied for graduate studies. If you’re interested in attending GRD2021, please follow the link to your department of interest and follow the instructions to be considered:

The University of Toronto and University of Toronto Engineering is committed to increasing diversity among our community members. Excellence flourishes in an environment that embraces the broadest range of people.

What students said about Graduate Research Days:

“Attending Graduate Research Days played an essential part in making my decision for graduate studies. I made one-on-one connections with current students and professors — including the researchers I was most interested in working with. By visiting the department, I found a potential niche that aligned perfectly with my interests and goals.”

– Rachel Kwan, MASc candidate in chemical engineering

 “During GRD, I met inspiring professors and learned about many interesting student projects. I also enjoyed meeting students from other universities. I felt very welcome at U of T and got a real sense for the community. The University works hard to build a collaborative environment that nurtures curiosity and encourages innovation, which is one of the reasons I ultimately accepted my offer to study at U of T.”
– Sean Oh, MASc candidate in materials science and engineering

“As an out of province student, GRD allowed me to see how beautiful U of T is, how impressive the facilities are, and meet prospective supervisors in person. It allowed me to make a personal connection with my supervisors and the lab… helping me to truly see myself at the University of Toronto.”
– Philippa Gosine, MASc candidate in biomedical engineering

“Attending this event solidified my decision to come to U of T, thanks to some life advice from Professor Jamieson and the enthusiasm of Professor Sun, with whom I now work. I did my undergraduate degree at UBC, so the event was also a great way to explore Toronto. Given my research is in applications of mechanical engineering technology in biology, I really liked how close U of T is to all the major hospitals — making it easy to collaborate with biological researchers.”
– Devin Luu, MASc candidate in mechanical engineering


I’ve already applied for MASc or PhD studies at U of T Engineering. How can I be invited to GRD?

If you’re interested in attending GRD2021, please review the guidelines outlined by the department of interest using the links above on how you can be invited.

I haven’t applied yet for graduate studies at U of T Engineering but think GRD2021 would be helpful. Can I attend?

This event is primarily for top applicants and is invitation only. If you haven’t applied yet and would like to be considered for this event, please review the guidelines outlined by the department of interest using the links above on how you can be invited.

I’ve applied to the Master of Engineering (MEng) program. Can I attend GRD2021?

GRD2021 is for top applicants to our research-intensive graduate programs, including our Master of Applied Science (MASc) and doctoral programs.

Why should I participate in GRD2021?

There is a lot to consider when it comes to graduate school, from research interests and community to support and career-development opportunities. Graduate Research Days 2021 is a wonderful way to have all your questions addressed about what Canada’s top engineering school can offer. This will be an opportunity for you to connect with current students, faculty, and staff.  You will leave with a better understanding of how U of T Engineering can support you in your journey.

Where will Canada’s #1 engineering school take you?

Our alumni and current students are the best testament to the value of a U of T Engineering graduate degree. Whether you’re interested in a career as a leader in an engineering firm, the CEO of your own company, a researcher advancing their field, a world-class educator or an aspiring astronaut, graduate study can lead to innumerable opportunities across all sectors and environments.

Explore the profiles below to learn more about how current and former U of T Engineering grad students have leveraged their degrees to create rich and diverse careers:

Michael Helander

Michael Helander

Michael completed his PhD in materials science and engineering at U of T. He is now President and CEO of OTI Lumionics, a company he co-founded by leveraging his breakthrough research on Organic LEDs (OLEDs). Their first consumer product, the aerelight™, is already revolutionizing the lighting industry.

Read more about Michael and OTI Lumionics:

Natalie Panek

Natalie Panek

Natalie completed her MASc in aerospace engineering at U of T. She is now a Mission Systems Engineer with MDA’s Robotics and Automation division, helping to develop the next generation of technologies to support Canadian and international space missions. Named one of Forbes’ 30 Under 30 in 2015, she is also an aspiring astronaut and an advocate for women in technology.

Read more about Natalie:

Lian Leng

Lian Leng

Lian completed her MASc and PhD in mechanical engineering at U of T. Her thesis work made headlines across Canada when she developed a 3D printer that generates sheets of skin grown from a patient’s own skin cells. The device won the James Dyson Award for Canada and a Grand Challenges Canada grant. Lian is now an Associate Director at Emulate, Inc.

Links to articles from across Canada on Lian’s research:

Nika Shakiba

Nika Shakiba

Nika completed her PhD in biomedical engineering. Her research focuses on the mechanisms underlying somatic cell reprogramming and the generation of induced pluripotent stem cells, which can give rise to any cell type in the body. Nika’s research brings us one step closer to a self-healing world. Nika is now an Assistant Professor at University of British Columbia at the School of Biomedical Engineering.

For more on Nika and the Zandstra Lab:

Justin Boutilier

Justin Boutilier

Justin Boutilier is a former industrial engineering PhD student at U of T. With funding from Grand Challenges Canada, Justin and his team — led by Professor Timothy Chan  ization models that use GPS data from cell phones and emergency sites to determine where to station and route ambulances in developing urban centres. The model is being used to direct ambulances more effectively in Dhaka, Bangladesh, cutting response times significantly and saving lives. Justin is now an Assistant Professor in Industrial and Systems Engineering and Honorary Fellow in Emergency Medicine at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

As a former Varsity basketball player in his undergraduate years, Justin is also interested in sports-related research. He’d like to combine physiological data from new technologies with traditional statistics to predict injuries, aid in rehabilitation and training, and learn just what can influence winning.

Beverly Bradley

Beverly Bradley

Beverly is a former chemical engineering PhD student at U of T’s Centre for Global Engineering where she evaluated and modeled sustainable technology options to provide low-income countries with a more reliable and cost-effective supply of medical oxygen. Oxygen is crucial, among other things, for treating pneumonia — the leading cause of death among children under age 5. Beverly is now a Programme Coordinator as a technical specialist for Oxygen Therapy at UNICEF Supply.

Learn more about Beverly:

Michael Gray


Michael Gray completed his PhD in civil engineering at U of T. He leveraged his graduate research to co-found Cast Connex, a company that designs steel castings that strengthen new and old buildings for earthquake resistance.

The company is setting new standards for design and safety around the world. In 2013, Cast Connex donated 170 of its earthquake-resistant connectors to the reconstruction of École Lakay in Haiti after a devastating earthquake.

Learn more about Michael and Cast Connex:

Did you know?

  • U of T Engineering consistently ranks as the top Engineering school in Canada in several major international rankings
  • U of T Engineering attracted $101.5 million in research funding in the past year
  • U of T receives the largest share of NSERC funding for engineering research in Canada
  • More than 300 industrial partners collaborate with U of T Engineering researchers
  • Upon graduating from U of T Engineering, you’ll join an alumni network of more than 50,000 worldwide
  • The U of T Engineering community consists of nearly 1,500 research-focused graduate students

© 2020 Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering