By Holger Dielenberg
The new internship program piloted by CoLab has proven a growing demand from Universities and Industry for real world experience and the development of job ready skills.
Internships present a fantastic opportunity for students and industry to collaborate, however balancing the needs from industry with the skills and expectations of graduates has always been a major stumbling block for both education and industry sectors.
“The Outcome.Life & CoLab partnership has successfully addressed needs from both parties and will completely re-shape the way we place engineering students in the future said Jack Clayfield the Director of Business Partnerships at Outcome.life.”
Outcome.life Co-Founder Gerard Holland said “we deal with thousands of interns every year across many disciplines. Engineering have always been the most difficult of placements to fill because of diminished manufacturing in Australia and lack of collaboration between Industry and Tertiary. Partnering with Space Tank’s CoLab program has now enabled us to offer a guaranteed stream of high quality engineering internships.”
Space Tank CoLab has successfully concluded its pilot internship program with Outcome.life in June 2020. The program was assigned a group of 14 engineering student interns from Central Queensland University to work in teams to develop real world designs for host companies from the health and disability sector.
Host companies get the benefit of research and development on products and services that can grow new revenue. Universities get guaranteed high quality internships. Students work on engaging real world projects and increase their employable skills set. It’s a win-win-win.
Students from the pilot program were excited to learn skills sought after by industry. There is a demand for design thinking, empathy and communication skills in fields of engineering but these skills are not usually part of University’s engineering curriculum.
Despite Covid-19 lockdown restrictions, CoLab continued the pilot program via Zoom and managed to keep the students on track. CoLab’s Co-Founder Scott Anderson said, “Covid restrictions really challenged us but we did everything to keep the student’s motivation up and continued pushing toward the project goals.”
The effort and discipline paid off. Andre Ferretto, Founder and Managing Director of HalleyAssist said, “Bloody Brilliant! – The concepts were remarkable and really well thought through. I only expected one design from the students, instead I was given three sensational designs to further explore.”
CoLab develops assistive technology and healthcare solutions in the NDIS/Disability and Aged care space. Current projects include a patient lifting exoskeleton, an electronic medication dispenser and the world’s smallest folding wheelchair.
“It was such a valuable experience. I now understand just how important human centred design and entrepreneurial thinking is for successful engineering today.” said Kumar Masapaka one of the first interns to complete the program.
The three months’ experience in design thinking and product incubation improves student’s job-ready skills. They gain a valuable understanding of engineering and product design while enhancing their employability and building valuable professional networks.
The 12-week internship program is suitable for anyone who is looking for an end-to-end product development and design experience. Student interns will be involved in:
● Client meetings and briefings
● Defining project needs and scope, research and development
● Product ideation, concept development, prototyping and product testing
● Use of state-of-the-art machinery and design tools including: multi axis 3D milling, 3D printing, laser cutting, CAD design software, vacuum forming and CNC routing.
Engineering students can apply directly to CoLab and Universities can inquire about how to add CoLab to their regular internship offering.
Enquire now for the next intake of CoLab internships at Space Tank.