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5 Charts: University of Waterloo vs. America's Best Automation Schools

We’ve matched the University of Waterloo against the best US schools for robotics and automation by examining their Electrical and Electronic Engineering rankings.

The University of Waterloo (UWaterloo) has a global reputation for being an innovation hub.

World-class research facilities, renowned faculty members and a long history of industry partnerships are just a few of the reasons why the UWaterloo has solidified its reputation as a leader in the robotics and automation industry.

In fact, it’s home to the biggest and most active community of researchers in the field of robotics and automation in Canada.

With that in mind, it’s no question that UWaterloo can hold its own against our neighbours to the south – who certainly have their own share of leading post-secondary institutions.

We’ve already run matchups with in our ‘5 Charts: Waterloo Versus’ blog series – facing top schools in cities like Boston or New York. This time, we’ve gathered the data to compare UWaterloo to some of the best post-secondary schools in the US for robotics and automation by examining their Electrical and Electronic Engineering rankings.

In this matchup, UWaterloo is going up against these challengers: Ohio State University, Carnegie Mellon University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Texas at Austin, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and MIT.

Here’s how the UWaterloo compares to some of the best robotics and automation schools in the US:

Round One: Overall Electrical and Electronic Engineering Ranking

American Schools Engineering rankings

Source: QS University Subject Rankings, University Ranking by Subject: Electrical and Electronic Engineering, 2024

As the first round kicks off, UWaterloo finds itself nestled comfortably in the middle of the pack in overall Electrical & Electronic Engineering. It’s no surprise that MIT takes the lead on this one, but a #29 ranking is nothing to scoff about. It demonstrates that UWaterloo can compete with the best of the best – because it’s one of them.

There’s huge opportunity for further growth in this area and looking ahead to 2024 and beyond, we say, challenge accepted.

Round Two: Electrical Engineering University Program Size (w/some Computer Engineering)

Sources: University of Waterloo, MIT, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, University of Texas at Austin, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Carnegie Mellon, Ohio State University, 2024

If you’re familiar with our ‘5 Charts: Waterloo Versus’ series, you know that UWaterloo often takes this round, no matter the matchup. That’s because UWaterloo is one of the world’s top engineering schools and Canada’s largest.

With cutting edge programming opportunities and leading co-op experiences, it’s no wonder that UWaterloo can compete with the best and biggest.

Round Three: Overall Graduate Employability Ranking

Source: QS University Rankings 2022

For this round, we looked at each university’s overall graduate employability. Considering that 1,500 universities from around the world are included in the QS Rankings, these are excellent rank achievements from all parties – but we’re happy to be the second highest.

Home to the world’s largest co-op program, UWaterloo is known for its abundant, steady stream of work-ready talent – and when robotics and automation companies are looking to scale, it’s not just quality that matters, it’s also quantity.

Round Four: Research Capabilities (Citations Per Faculty)

Source: QS University Rankings 2024

Publishing research is a core foundation of any university, signaling a strong commitment to collaboration and community. It’s great to see many of these universities with such high numbers of citations per faculty.

While Uwaterloo falls behind MIT, University of Texas at Austin and Carnegie Mellon, we can proudly say that it has been Canada’s #1 comprehensive research university for 16 consecutive years.

Round Five: Entrepreneurs Produced

Source: QS University Rankings 2022

Innovation and entrepreneurial spirit drive so much positive change for local communities and the world. In this round, we look at the rankings for the number of entrepreneurs produced according to Pitchbook’s annual university rankings. 21st place in the world is quite a finish – that’s in the top 1.6%!

Even if it doesn’t win against every US school, UWaterloo still takes takes first place in Canada. In fact, about 18% of all Canadian tech founders studied there.

The Decision: University of Waterloo competes with the best

This was a strong matchup for UWaterloo as it faced some healthy competition from its US counterparts. Despite not taking first place in all the rounds, it continues to give challengers a run for their money and uphold its strong, global reputation.

UWaterloo plays an integral part of Waterloo’s strong and vibrant robotics and automation ecosystem, which is made up of various R&D institutions, support organizations and innovative companies like ATS Automation, Clearpath Robotics, Eclipse Automation and Avidbots, to name a few.

Access the incredible and rich talent pool from the University of Waterloo