October 5, 2021 is World Teacher Day. Here we would like to highlight a member of the Smarter Alloys family with a strong background as a professor, and mentor.
MICHAEL KUNTZ, PhD, MBA, P.Eng
Mike is Smarter Alloy’s Vice President of Operations. He holds a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from University of Waterloo and an MBA in Innovation and Entrepreneurship from Wilfrid Laurier University. Mike is published in various high-impact-factor academic journals, and has done dissertations and presentations at conferences in both Canada and the US.
Between 2005 – 2008 he was a non-tenure track Research Professor at the University of Waterloo, teaching Welding & Metallurgy – a grad level 4th year course. Mike was always interested in pursuing a career in academia, as he has a passion for passing on knowledge and sharing experience. The Welding & Metallurgy program also saw him guiding research and development training for students in the automotive applications field, teaching national and international students from Canada, USA, China, and India.
Mike recalls two teachers that were his inspiration for pursuing academia. One was Larry Smith, professor of Economics 102 at the University of Waterloo. According to Mike, Professor Smith was a captivating lecturer who could hold your attention for hours on end. And he also remembers Hugh Kerr, who taught the university’s Welding & Metallurgy program before Mike. He attributes Kerr as the inspiration for first getting into materials science in the first place.
Ibraheem Khan, Smarter Alloys’ founder and CEO, was a student in Mike’s Welding & Metallurgy course in for the 2006-2007 semester.
After the 2008 academic year, Mike became the university Director of Research Partnerships, and completed his MBA, and continued at the University of Waterloo as a colleague of Ibraheem. Then in 2009, Ibraheem formed the company “Innovative Processing Technologies” at the university, with Mike’s involvement. Around 2014, Mike joined the company to help helm what is today known as Smarter Alloys.