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Student Experience

The Mechanical Science and Engineering Department (MechSE) offers Bachelor of Science degrees in Engineering Mechanics (EM) and Mechanical Engineering (ME). Lowerclassmen in MechSE take classes alongside students from many other engineering majors, such as aerospace, civil, chemical, industrial, and electrical. The diversity of majors provides ample opportunity for students to build their own interdisciplinary and cross-functional engineering community.

MechSE students typically take 14-16 credit hours in their first semester and 14-18 credit hours in each following semester.  After sophomore year, students branch off into more specialized classes and often work with their peers within the department to better tackle the department’s challenging classes, labs, and projects.  

In addition to the standard classes, students can personalize their education through 12 credit hours of coursework with the choice of a Secondary Field and Technical Electives, respectively. EM students choose a Secondary Field, or area of specialization, whereas ME students can choose to broaden and/or deepen their knowledge of the field. Independent studies with a research group can also count for credit toward either MechSE degree.

Within the engineering campus, MechSE students can find buildings geared toward their specific work. The Mechanical Engineering Laboratory (MEL) is home to several research labs in which MechSE students can get involved, as well as engineering computer labs and studio workspaces. With 24-hour card access, students can be found in MEL any time of day or night. The first floor tables often serve as space for groups working on homework.

The Mechanical Engineering Building (MEB) serves as the department’s other major building and also provides MechSE students 24-hour card access to research labs and workspace. Where MEL has design studios and computer labs, MEB has classrooms for discussion sections and lectures, a cleanroom, and a very friendly Undergraduate Programs Office.

Most MechSE professors have office space in either MEL or MEB, and often have research groups based out of these buildings as well.  The proximity of the two buildings creates a close-knit community of faculty easily accessible to students.

MechSE students can maintain a school-personal life balance with good use of time management. There are plenty of opportunities for extracurricular involvement among design teams (cars, robotics, and much more) and the many more registered student organizations. MechSE groups also host many social events.

Incoming freshman can expect to be challenged from the start and pushed to achieve their best.  Students are always encouraged to get involved and take advantage of the department’s numerous opportunities. The department wants to see its students succeed, and help and resources are always available to those who ask. Students can expect a welcoming environment that promises to prepare them for successful careers in engineering or the many other routes a degree in EM or ME can take them.