2013 Clement J. Freund Award Recipient: Ken Porteous

Ken Porteous attended McGill University, earning a Bachelors degree in Chemical Engineering and pursued graduate studies at the University of Delaware, earning Masters and PhD degrees. On graduation, he joined Syncrude Canada Ltd where his career spanned 14 years and included management positions in research, corporate planning and information services.

Since 1985, Dr Porteous has been a Professor of Chemical Engineering and an Associate Dean in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Alberta with responsibility for the Engineering Co-op program.

At that time, there were 150 students in Co-op. By 2012 the number had reached 1400. In this period, employer participation expanded from 50 organizations to over 300. The placement rates per work term have consistently been over 90% and frequently over 95% even during economically challenging times. This program has become the second largest engineering Co-op program in Canada. It undergoes an accreditation review every six years by the Canadian Association for Co-operative Education and has been accredited since 1987.

By Spring 2004, there was significant demand from employers and students to provide some form of employment service which would be open to all students in the Faculty.  The Engineering Employment Centre was created as a unit within the Engineering Co-op Department to assist Co-op and non-Co-op undergraduates and graduate students in finding summer and permanent jobs. It opened in Fall 2004 and has been well received and utilized by all stakeholders.

In addition to his Co-op responsibilities, Dr Porteous manages the student services within the Faculty which involves admission and promotion decisions and student discipline. He is the co-author of a text book on engineering economics and has taught courses on this topic. For a two year period starting in 1989, he was seconded to manage the University’s administrative and academic computing services. He serves on a number of University and Faculty committees and served eight years as an elected member of the governing Council of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta.

For his contributions to cooperative education, CEED is proud to honor Ken Porteous with the 2013 Clement J. Freund Award.