Undergraduate Program

Review degree requirements and course descriptions in our General Bulletin

Chemical Engineering addresses the design and operation of processes for separation, purification, and reaction of raw materials to produce useful products and energy. It is a broad discipline, focusing on processes from the atomic level, through the nano-scale, to mega-scale manufacturing. It combines expertise from the basic sciences (chemistry, mathematics and physics) and engineering (transport, reactions, separations, process design) with economics and business considerations. 

Chemical Engineering is central to topics high on the national and international agenda:

  • Renewable energy (including photovoltaics, fuel cells, batteries) 
  • Global warming (including sequestration of green-house gases) 
  • Advanced materials (including nano structures, novel composites and compounds)
  • Sustainable and ‘green’ manufacturing processes and materials
  • Biological and health related products (including drug discovery and manufacturing, tissue and biomolecular engineering)

Our program enables each student to design an individualized curriculum that highlights his or her interests within the field of chemical engineering. Chemical engineers apply a common core of knowledge to a broad range of applications, and our curriculum reflects this idea: Each student attains this core knowledge through a common set of math, science and chemical engineering courses, and focuses on his or her interests through a series of twelve elective courses. As examples, students can focus on biochemical engineering, management, or complete premedical coursework through these electives. Our program is described in detail here.

We also emphasize opportunities for experiential learning (that is, learning-by-doing). Almost half of our students participate in our co-op program, where they spend two semesters doing engineering work (and getting paid) at a company. Many students do undergraduate research in the labs of our faculty, which sometimes leads to publications in scientific journals and presentations by the students at scientific meetings. Students may also enroll in our BS-MS program, which is a 5 year program that leads to both a BS and MS degree in chemical engineering.

Our program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). The accreditation process involves defining the mission, objectives and desired outcomes of our program, showing how these criteria reflect the needs of our constituents, and assessing how well we meet these criteria. Our program objectives and desired outcomes are given below:

Program Objectives

The undergraduate program in chemical engineering seeks to produce graduates who will:

  1. be able to excel in professional careers across a broad range of industries
  2. apply the knowledge and skills acquired through the chemical engineering curriculum to positively contribute to their profession and society
  3. assume positions of responsibility and/or leadership in academia, industry, government, and business
  4. succeed in post-graduate and professional degree programs

Program Outcomes

As preparation for meeting the above program objectives, the Department of Chemical Engineering provides an undergraduate program designed so that students attain:

  1. an ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering
  2. an ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data
  3. an ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability
  4. an ability to function on multidisciplinary teams
  5. an ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems
  6. an understanding of professional and ethical responsibility
  7. an ability to communicate effectively
  8. the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context
  9. a recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in life-long learning
  10. a knowledge of contemporary issues
  11. an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice

 

Enrollment and Graduation data

 

Year

Total declared majors

(1st-4th year)

 

Number graduating

2008-2009 105 27
2009-2010 123 20
2010-2011 130 31
2011-2012 106 52
2012-2013 92 42
2013-2014 123 33
2014-2015 145 30
2015-2016 175 54