Hudson Valley to offer mechatronics degree this fall

Jefri Nazri

Staff Writer

A new Associate in Applied Science degree in Mechatronics will be offered at Hudson Valley in Fall 2015. This 62-credit multidisciplinary program will be the first of its kind in the entire Capital Region.

Mechatronics is a combination of mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, telecommunications engineering, control engineering and computer engineering.

“The thing about mechatronics is that it merges all different principles. Depending on the college that’s doing it, the focus may be different. In our case, because it is only a two-year degree, we will be concentrating on the basics because the foundation of mechatronics will start with electrical knowledge, then the other disciplines will build on that,” explained Normand Ouimet, electrical construction and maintenance professor at Hudson Valley.

Many classes in the mechatronics program are taken from the Electrical Construction and Maintenance (ECM) program. These include Industrial Motor Control Theory, Instrumentation and Process Control, and Automation Technology.

Ouimet said, “What we’re building in our two-year degree is the foundation. Therefore there will be a lot of electrical classes. All those of ECM courses are part of the ECM degree, but they are going to form the foundation for the Mechatronics program, the idea being that with our two-year degree, a student could either go out and get a job or they could move on to a four-year school.”

There are several schools throughout the United States that offer a four-year degree in mechatronics, including Vaughn College in Flushing, NY.

Ouimet said, “If you go online and do job searches on websites such as CareerBuilder or Monster, then type in ‘mechatronics,’ it is one of the major keywords that’s being used in a lot of employers. They are actively seeking out people with this particular degree. GlobalFoundries in Malta are very interested in mechatronics and are actively seeking out employees with this skill set and experience.”

He explained, “What employers want to be able to do now is that they want to be able to say to a technician, This machine is your responsibility. No matter what goes wrong with it, you need to be able to diagnose the problem and fix it, whether it’s computer-related, mechanical, electrical, hydraulic, or pneumatic. This is where mechatronics come in, when people get trained in multiple disciplines to be able to solve these troubleshoots.”

For more information, contact the Building Systems Technology Department at (518) 629-7275 or the Admissions Office by phone at (518) 629-7309, via email at admissions@hvcc.edu, or in person in Room 223 of the Guenther Enrollment Services Center.

 

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