Campus: CSU, Northridge -- March 07, 2001
Software Gift Gives CSUN Students Tools to
Design the Future
NORTHRIDGE, Calif., March 7, 2001 - As the academic year at Cal State
Northridge nears its end, dozens of electrical and computer engineering
students are crowding into a senior design lab to test theories and create
prototypes of circuit boards and other equipment they will soon be making
in the real world.
Among the tools they are using are more than $77 million in software packages,
a gift from San Jose-based Cadence Design System, Inc.
Laurence Caretto, dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Science,
said the Cadence gift was "greatly appreciated."
"This software gift will allow our students to use the latest professional
design tools in their classes," Caretto said. "It helps us produce
graduates who are ready to work their first day on the job. This gift
and similar gifts from other companies and individuals provide an essential
component of support for our educational programs."
Electrical and computer engineering professor Sharlene Katz said Cadence
has basically given CSUN students access to its complete line of software
used in electrical and computer engineering and has promised to update
it each year to make sure it is the most current in the field.
The software is installed in CSUN's Electrical and Computer Engineering
Senior Design Lab, where graduating seniors use it to work on their senior
"Every senior student has to do a senior design project before they
graduate, and the lab is basically their workroom," Katz said.
The students can create a schematic of their design, say for an analogue
circuit board, and enter it into a computer. Using the Cadence software,
they can identify and then get the bugs of out their design. When that
is done, again using the Cadence software, they can create a printed layout
of their proposed circuit board, Katz said.
"The software can really take them from the beginning to the end
of the project and give them a feel for what it is like to work in the
real world," Katz said. "It makes what they learn in the classroom
Katz said that many of the companies CSUN students go on to work at, such
as in the defense industry or the computer industry, use Cadence or similar
"Companies looking to hire electronic engineering students when they
graduate are looking for people who are familiar with the Cadence tools,
and our students will definitely be familiar with them," she said.
California State University, Northridge has more than 29,000 full- and
part-time students and offers 58 bachelor's and 50 master's degrees. Founded
on 1958, it is the only four-year university in the San Fernando Valley.
CSUN's College of Engineering and Computer Science is nationally recognized.
A recent National Science Foundation survey of 529 universities ranked
CSUN among the top 12 in the number of graduates who go on to earn doctorates
in the computer sciences and engineering. It is also ranked 14th in the
nation in the number of bachelors degrees awarded to Hispanic students,
qualifying the campus to be recognized by U.S. Department of Education
as a Hispanic Serving Institution.