September 18, 2018 – Alion Canada is pleased to announce a $200,000 investment into the University of British Columbia’s (UBC) Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering (NAME) program. Used to support the launch of an open-water hydrodynamic test facility, the funds will help grow the University’s training capabilities and further educate the engineers and operational experts that Alion and other Canadian companies look to attract and retain.
“Alion’s contribution to the NAME program is not only an investment in UBC’s future, but that of Canada’s marine sector writ large,” said Jon Mikkelsen, UBC NAME Program Director. “It is because of partners like Alion that we are able to attract students from across a variety of engineering disciplines and provide them with the education necessary to lead our marine sector throughout the 21st century.”
Since its inception, UBC’s NAME program has been closely aligned with Canada’s marine industry, including its research and skills development needs. The program currently graduates masters-level professionals in the fields of naval architecture, ship design, ship building, ship quality assurance and ship operation. Alion Canada’s contribution comes just as the program looks to expand its teaching into areas like electrical and ship systems engineering.
“It is through our work on naval programs like the JSS that Alion is able to expand its Canadian presence and build Canadian capability in areas like naval design and architecture,” said Bruce Samuelsen, Chief Operating Officer of Alion Science and Technology and President of Alion Canada. “It is because of programs like UBC’s NAME program that Alion Canada is able to hire local, highly trained professionals in the marine sector that are ready to support domestic programs and international export opportunities alike.”
A world leader in naval design and ship systems integration, Alion is contributing significantly to several projects under Canada’s National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSS), including in its role as the Design Agent for Seaspan’s Vancouver Shipyards for the new AORs being built for the Royal Canadian Navy. The investment being made into UBC’s NAME program is in direct support of Alion’s JSS obligations to Seaspan, under Canada’s Industrial and Regional Benefits (IRB) Policy and a testament to the company’s long-term commitment to supporting and retaining home-grown talent.
“Seaspan Shipyards is leading the redevelopment of a sustainable shipbuilding industry on Canada’s West Coast and we are proud to work with Alion in accomplishing this,” said Mark Lamarre, CEO – Seaspan Shipyards. “Thanks to the National Shipbuilding Strategy, our industry and supply chain are growing, we are developing our workforce, investing in infrastructure and preparing for a bright future.”
Since the inception of the National Shipbuilding Strategy, Alion Canada’s parent company, Alion Science and Technology has invested heavily in growing what was a decaying naval architecture and engineering capability in Canada. Through extensive knowledge transfer from its operations in the United States, Alion has been able to grow its Canadian engineering capability for domestic and export programs. UBC’s NAME program graduates Canadian naval architects and engineers who are looking for the types of careers that Alion Canada will provide. To this end, Alion Canada has hired 7 recent graduates as well as mentored a design team from the NAME program.