Travelling through the Iron Warriors’ first decade

Allison Ngsee, Samantha Poon - 1A Management
Posted on: November 17, 2010

***Also contains math, see original document***

We decided to celebrate the Iron Warrior’s 30th anniversary with a trip to the past. As first year students, we have just been introduced to all the information that the Engineering Newspaper holds, and what better way to familiarize ourselves with it than a look back to its first issues. We focused on the first decade of its publications, and pulled out the most interesting facts we could find.

In the Editorial section of the July 1981 issue, it was written that Waterloo had the world’s second largest co-op program. It is no surprise that we are currently the world’s largest co-op program at the university level! What makes us so great? Let’s explore some facts and figures!

According to the statistics obtained by the university:

• World’s largest co-op program – 3,500 co-op employers worldwide – that’s about 1,000 more than the next largest co-op program

• $25,000 – $74,000 – potential co-op earnings by graduation

• $136 million – last year’s co-op students’ total approximate earnings

• 14,686 undergraduate co-op students – more than twice as many as the next largest program in the world

• 4 to 6 co-op work terms by graduation

• 16 months to 2 years of work experience gained through co-op

• 95 % – co-op student employment rate for 2009-10

It can also be noted that many issues of the papers in the ’80s had large alcohol ads. Some of them covered as much as two thirds of a page on the paper. The liberalism from back then is prominent throughout the newspaper.

CAD/CAM in Waterloo Engineering

We all have the possibility of using programs such as AutoCAD to create most of our 2D and 3D drawings, instead of tediously drafting them. But before 1984, students didn’t have that privilege. That was the year Waterloo Engineering introduced CAD and CAM (computer automated manufacturing) to the engineering labs.

The Waterloo Engineering Design Competition was held recently, but did you know that the first Canadian Engineering Design Competition was held here in Waterloo on January 1985? Now it is held annually for engineering students across Canada.

If you want to read more into the fascinating past of The Iron Warrior, the archives that contain articles from almost a decade ago can be read online. Furthermore, a new section, “From the Iron Archives” was introduced this year in celebration of the 30th anniversary to highlight interesting old articles.

We also found a good recipe might be worth looking at!

Don’t Forget to Stop and Smell the Roses

By: Todd Ruthman, June 1986

Just what does it take to be an engineer? Here’s a suggested recipe handed down by Grandpa Lennox from his school days


1 cup strong math ability

2 tbsp interest in science

½ cup good analytical skills

3 tsp good working habits

3 cups resistance to heavy work loads

Mix well and place in a pressure cooker just below boiling for five years, alternating between classrooms and office ovens every four months.

Serve immediately, garnished with a degree and small iron ring.

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