Academic News

Computer and Information Systems Technology

Sprint to Innovate – And The Winner Is…!

April 13, 2022

Sprint to Innovate – The Innovation Challenge presented by City of Winnipeg was a great success.  Student teams worked on their chosen challenge from Friday, April 8 to Sunday, April 10.  Each team was given 7 minutes to present the solution to their challenge.

Our judges, Wendy Yan (Futurpreneur), Brent Wennekes (Protein Industries), Tyler Gooch (City of Winnipeg), and Lawrence Lazarko (formerly Manitoba Public Insurance) had a tough decision deciding between the 17 teams that would win our four prizes.

This event was established by Tech Manitoba, RRC Polytech, and the University of Winnipeg’s Faculty of Science.
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Spotlight: Al McLeod

March 4, 2022

ACE Spotlight Series

This is the first in a series of spotlight articles, presented by Applied Computer Education (ACE), where we feature members and projects from the ACE department.

Introducing Al McLeod

Al McLeod is an honorary member of the ACE department, we met with Al to ask some questions about himself.

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Red River College awarded $300,000 in Mitacs research grants

November 5, 2020

Canada’s fastest growing Mitacs funded college 2019-20

This news release originally appeared in RRC’s PR newsletter, November 5, 2020. Web version published here.

Red River College is now one of the fastest growing research colleges in Canada thanks to two new grants totaling $300,000 awarded by Mitacs earlier last month.

“Red River College is proud to be a leading Canadian institution in applied research,” said Fred Meier, RRC President and CEO. “We continue to expand our research efforts into new and emerging areas of technology – such as AI and machine learning – and through collaboration with businesses across Manitoba and our ACE Project Space.”

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BTM Work Packages

November 4, 2020

work package in a way is a mini project. Just like a project, your work package will include all elements, such as a budget, material(s), human resources, schedules, deliverables and milestones.

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Funding Opportunity: ICTC Work Integrated Learning

October 29, 2020

Hiring a student to work for your organization can help you launch your startup or validate your business ideas, and the Information and Communications Technology Council (ICTC-CTIC) of Canada wants to help you do it. The ICTC-CTIC’s Work Integrated Learning (WIL Digital) program can cover the up to 75% of wages to hire a student, up to $7,500, over a four month term or longer if need be.

ICTC-CTIC’s WIL Digital is an innovative Work Integrated Learning program that helps employers grow their businesses by providing financial assistance for hiring post-secondary students.

Take Action

Our Success Story

This time last year, one of our student teams at the ACE Project Space were busy developing a solution for GFIT Wellness in their first project term with us.

Fast-forward to Summer 2020, GFIT Wellness had recently completed their second term with us at the ACE Project Space. Our client, Arturo Orellana of GFIT Wellness, was looking for funding to hire our students. Arturo reached out to Cheryl Serpanchy, ICTC-CTIC’s Regional Coordinator for Western Canada, who was able to connect him to WIL Digital funding and to our ACE department chair, Karen Kabel.

WIL Digital is designed to connect employers with funding to employ post-secondary students. In GFIT Wellness’ case, they were able to access $7,500 in funding to pay their first student-employee. The funding from ICTC-CTIC made it possible for GFIT Wellness to hire one of our project students from the ACE Project Space. Since their first student-hire, GFIT has hired 8 students using WIL Digital funding, $7,500 per student, to work for their company. They plan to employ more students in 2021 using WIL Digital funding.

GFIT’s story is one of many success stories from the ACE Project Space, as we encourage new clients to take advantage of sponsoring a project at the ACE Project Space and accessing funding opportunities.

Why Should You Hire One of Our Students?

Here at the Applied Computer Education (ACE) department at RRC, hiring students typically happens in one of three ways: Co-op Education, Industry Project at the ACE Project Space, or post-project to the ACE Project Space.

Hiring a student to work on your product is a practical and financially viable way to test business ideas or launch your start-up. When our students work for you, not only is it an opportunity to access technical skills to build your product, it is also a way for students to build up expertise and business knowledge that brings value to your organization. In a world where it can be challenging for students to build up work experience, hiring a student to your organization is a way for them to gain valuable work experience and potential references.

Which Institutions are Using ICTC-CTIC’s WIL Subsidy?

Colleges and Universities across Canada have accessed ICTC-CTIC’s WIL funding to create employment opportunities for students. The program is only applicable to Canadian and Permanent-Resident students.

• The University of Alberta hired 30 students to help create an online curriculum

• The University of Manitoba actively uses this program

• Atlantic Colleges Atlantique (ACA), with 7 post-secondary institution members, have a partnership with ICTC-CTIC’s WIL Digital program

ICTC-CTIC partners with educational institutions on programs that offer dual credits, and micro-credentials.

Take Action

Access ICTC-CTIC’s WIL Digital’s Funding

Apply for funding through WIL Digital and consider hiring a student from one of the Applied Computer Education (ACE) department’s programs.

Contact ICTC-CTIC’s Western Canada’s Regional Coordinator:

Cheryl Serpanchy
Phone: 204-808-1167 ext. 833

Or, apply online:

Apply for ICTC-CTIC’s WIL Digital Subsidy

Create a co-op employment opportunity

Considering hiring a student for co-op from one of our ACE programs?

Contact our co-op coordinator:

Dan Greenberg
Phone: 204-949-8382

Develop and lauch your product while paying students

Do you have an idea you want to bring to life? Discuss opportunities to bring your project to be developed at the ACE Project Space.

Contact our ACE Project Space coordinator:

Ralph Dueck Email:
Or, apply to have your project developed with us:

Apply to the ACE Project Space

Learn More about our experience with GFIT

Read about GFIT Wellness’ story at ICTC-CTIC 

Read about gfit’s first project term with the ACE Project Space

A Career in Tech – An Information Session for Women

February 10, 2020

Calling all women and non-binary people! If you are good with people and adapt easily to change, join us to learn the skills that will help you become a problem solver in any setting.

Red River College, Tech Manitoba’s MAVEN program and local tech companies want to help you retool for a career in tech. Join our conversation and learn about the many fulfilling and lucrative opportunities in the field of technology. The event is FREE and includes beverages and a light snack.

Why Attend this Important Session Geared to Women?

  • Gain a better understanding of careers in technology
  • Meet and talk with industry representatives
  • Learn about pathways to exciting career opportunities
  • Experience live demonstrations and meet current IT students and educators



Come Visit Us at DisruptED Future!

January 29, 2020

It’s amazing what can happen in a year and it’s certainty more incredible when you consider the speed at which technology is evolving! Red River College’s Applied Computer Education department has been using technology to simplify education for students and educators alike. Between January 30 and 31st, we invite you to visit us at the DisruptED Conference to find out what we are doing in the areas of virtual reality, project management, and online learning. We’ll be on hand to help you participate in one or more technology demonstrations.


Humanizing Technology with VR

We’ve been using VR in the classroom over at the ACE Project Space to help students improve their presentation skills. Using this tool along with encouragement from our instructors, students have gone from terrified to terrific in less than a term. Take a test drive and see for yourself the difference VR makes!

Simplifying Project Management with Ralphware

With the high number and variety of industry projects entering the ACE Project Space every term, our resident project space instructor, Ralph Dueck, found a need to provide a quick, simple, effective, and repeatable way of managing agile projects using the Scrum methodology with students and their clients. See how Ralphware has been used effectively over the past two years to keep students on track in a fast-moving project-based environment.

Using Online Learning to Create Mentorship Opportunities

The competency-based education (CBE) model has been used at the ACE project Space to provide students with opportunities to develop and prove their skills. The focus is less on lectures and more on experiential education and mentorship. Instructors in Applied Computer Education are updating their courses to enable their course content to be taught in online and blended learning formats. Learn how you can incorporate online learning in the classroom while freeing up time for providing in-class mentorship opportunities.

About the Conference

DisruptED Future is a two-day conference where the local tech industry and educational institutions meet to inspire the next generation of innovators. The conference is being held at the RBC Convention Centre located at 375 York Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Business Technology Students Guerrilla Testing Client’s Website

January 29, 2020

Some of the Business Technology Management (BTM) students took advantage of the anticipated traffic at the Exchange District Campus (EDC) Career Fair to conduct a five-second usability test. The students were asked to intercept participants that fell into the target market and ask them to look at their client’s landing page and images for five seconds to then answer some qualitative questions.

The students tested 20 “users” and provided a Tim Hortons gift card as compensation for the participant’s time.

The five-second test is a powerful usability testing tool designed to capture a user’s first impression of a webpage. The test length is purposely chosen as studies have shown that five seconds is enough time for users to formulate an immediate qualitative impression of the webpage without having enough time to begin to focus on specific design elements.

AquaHacking Challenge and Opportunity to Save Lake Winnipeg

January 15, 2020

On January 15, 2020, representatives from the Winnipeg office for the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) delivered an information session on their sustainability campaign to students at the ACE Project Space.  The IISD, whose mission is to champion solutions to our planet’s greatest sustainability challenges, created the AquaHacking Challenge, an initiative and competition designed to attract bright young minds who have the desire and ability to address our most urgent water issues.

Pauline Gerard, Deputy Director, IISD-ELA and Corporate Secretary, talked to our BIT, BTM, InfoSec, and PTEC students about the challenges the IISD is working to resolve in protecting and cleaning up our fresh water resources and species right here in Manitoba. Lake Winnipeg, which is the 11th largest fresh water lake in the world, is under threat due to excessive pollutants entering the watershed. The lake also serves as the sole source of potable water for many northern communities and supplies a significant commercial fishing stock. Gerard called for students’ help in assisting the organization in signing up to develop technology-backed ideas and solutions to stop further degradation of our precious fresh water resources.

Pauline Gerard, Deputy Director, IISD-ELA and Corporate Secretary describes AquaHacking

Pauline Gerard, Deputy Director, IISD-ELA and Corporate Secretary describes AquaHacking

Gerard guided students through the process of developing sustainable ideas by working on a common challenge affecting the agriculture sector today: providing agriculture producers with cost-effective solutions for managing drainage and the climate. The students were split into groups to discuss ideas around how the problem could be solved. One student from each group shared their idea to the audience. Ideas involved Internet-connected sensors, apps, and more.

The five challenges the IISD is working on for Lake Winnipeg include:

  • Providing agricultural producers with cost-effective solutions for water and land management
  • Assessing fish populations and health using non-invasive techniques
  • Preventing microplastics from entering the lake
  • Enabling local testing of drinking water quality in remote northern communities
  • Financing sustainable development initiatives by connecting individual and group funding sources

The AquaHacking Challenge is an 8-month long competition for the best ideas, connecting teams of innovative people with mentors from industry and workshops to create innovative and sustainable solutions. Technology-minded youth between the ages of 18 and 35 are encouraged to register to be part of a solution team for this competition, which starts in February with winners declared in October. Winners will receive part of a $50,000 prize pool to fund further development of their solutions.

To learn more about the AquaHacking 2020 Challenge for Lake Winnipeg and how to participate, visit or stop by the IISD booth on January 31st during the DisruptED Conference at the RBC Convention Centre.

Project RID – AI-Powered Consumer-to-Consumer Selling

December 23, 2019

Project Term: Fall 2019

Selling used physical items online has traditionally been a time-consuming process. Writing a good product description and pricing it appropriately can be challenging. Sponsored by North Forge, the RID team came to the ACE Project Space to find a way to create an application to simplify the selling process. Our BIT and BTM students built a prototype application that quickly populates a product description by simply taking a photo of the product. The students developed a web application that supports user authentication using Firebase, Google for photo storage, and integration of Vision AI and the eBay API to populate recognize products, populate descriptions, and determine price ranges.


The RID student team completed the following deliverables for the project during the fall term at the ACE Project Space:

  • User authentication
  • Mobile compatible view
  • Integrated image recognition feature
  • Product fields input

Technologies used

  • React
  • Vision AI
  • eBay API
  • Firebase
  • Node
  • Bootstrap
  • Material UI

Item Capture Screen

Item Capture Screen


Image Upload Screen

Image Upload Screen


Price Chart

Price Chart

RRC Polytech campuses are located on the lands of Anishinaabe, Ininiwak, Anishininew, Dakota, and Dené, and the National Homeland of the Red River Métis.

We recognize and honour Treaty 3 Territory Shoal Lake 40 First Nation, the source of Winnipeg’s clean drinking water. In addition, we acknowledge Treaty Territories which provide us with access to electricity we use in both our personal and professional lives.

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