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The relationship between alumni, industry and the University has diversified over the years to create a stronger community and adequately meet industry research needs. ECE is active in various university-wide initiatives to engage both alumni and industry members with academic research. Public lecture series, a co-operative education program, internships and faculty consulting are a few opportunities for past graduates and industry to connect with the University. A new approach to IP by the University-Industry Liaison Office encourages more collaborative research to take place on campus.
ECE is contributing to UBC's goal of creating a sustainable campus by developing smart-grid technology on campus. As part of UBC's ‘living laboratory’ initiative, innovative energy systems will increase the community's control over its own facilities and enable implementation and monitoring of new technologies. The 'living laboratory' presents industry with an opportunity to partner with UBC in order to research, develop and test sustainable solutions in a real-world environment.