Two UBC Engineering students awarded 2024 Cansbridge Fellowship

UBC engineering students Matthew Chow and Lily Watt have been named recipients of the 2024 Cansbridge Fellowship.

Originally published in UBC Engineering News

University of British Columbia engineering students Lily Watt and Matthew Chow are among this year’s recipients of the Cansbridge Fellowship. They are two of 15 fellows who will be joining a week-long conference in New York, a summer internship in Asia enabled by a $10,000 scholarship, and a lifelong professional network.

Watt, a third-year engineering physics student and previously a research assistant at UBC’s Stewart Blusson Quantum Matter Institute, is interested in quantum computing and applied robotics, and hopes to break into a novel technology industry during her Cansbridge Fellowship. She sees the fellowship as a gateway to both professional growth and personal development, and is eager to immerse herself in a new language and way of life.

“The fellowship not only provides globally-minded training and mentorship, but will also enable unique opportunities to identify with others,” said Watt, who is currently president of the UBC Quantum Club, and part of UBC Subbots and UBC WasteNauts (former) design teams. “My goals for the future are to explore the world and connect with people, and to push forward the development of technologies that will help them.”

Third-year computer engineering student Chow looks forward to connecting with the Cansbridge community and engaging with leaders in entrepreneurship. He aims to use scalable software as a tool to make hardware products safer and higher quality.

“Getting the opportunity to meet founders, investors and business leaders at the Cansbridge Fellowship Conference will expand my understanding of business and entrepreneurship, helping me to create my own company in the future,” said Chow, who has served as technical director of the UBC Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and led the UBC Solar software team. He has also completed co-op placements working on Tesla’s Cybertruck firmware and at Zipline, a unicorn start-up in San Francisco, to design software for autonomous delivery drones.

Previous Cansbridge fellows have gone on to acquire distinctions such as the Thiel FellowshipYCombinator and Schwarzman Scholars. They have also secured positions at companies like Microsoft and Google, or run their own start-ups like Mosaic, Wombo and One Species.

Currently, the Cansbridge Fellowship is supported by several Canadian universities including UBC, University of Toronto, McGill University, Western University, Queens University, Simon Fraser University, University of Alberta, University of Calgary and University of Waterloo, as well as alumni of the program.