Welcome to the Mechanical Engineering Department!
Thank you for your interest in the Mechanical Engineering Department at The University of Akron. The fact that you are considering one of the most challenging but rewarding careers in engineering speaks to your high aspirations and commitment to serious work. At UA, you will receive a high-quality mechanical engineering education with distinct experiential learning opportunities that rival the best in the country.
Popular, growing field
Our department is the largest in the College of Engineering, capturing about 40% of the total student population in all engineering programs. In Fall 2018, we had nearly 1,400 students registered in the department programs, more than double the next department following in enrollment!
This popularity of mechanical engineering is reflected in most colleges in the country. Mechanical engineering is a broad major that focuses on fundamentals of science and engineering including heat transfer, fluid and solid mechanics, materials, energy conversion – all concepts that are common to many engineering specializations. Mechanical engineering students are versatile and can work in a wider spectrum of applications which is attractive to employers.
There is a demand for mechanical engineers. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, jobs for mechanical engineers are expected to increase 9 percent between 2016 and 2026. ME students usually receive more co-op offers and have the fortunate advantage of having to choose between multiple offers. They tend to have a higher job placement rate than other engineers when they graduate.
Liftoff with our new program
In addition to our Mechanical Engineering program, students who are interested in working in the aerospace sector can major in our new Aerospace Systems Engineering program. This program is growing quickly and has recently been ABET accredited – the gold standard in higher education accreditation. This program shares a large part of the curriculum with mechanical engineering, so it is feasible for undergraduate students in the department to graduate with both majors in just about a year more of study.
Experiential learning opportunities abound
UA’s exceptional experiential learning component sets us apart from other engineering colleges. Students have the option of securing a full-time, paid position while in school through our Cooperative Education Program. Other hands-on learning opportunities include participating in undergraduate research, joining a student design team, and designing solutions to real engineering problems through Senior Capstone Projects.
Some of our most active design teams in the college - SAE Formula Racing, SAE Aero, Human-Powered Vehicle, SAE Baja - are composed almost entirely of mechanical engineering students and are advised by our own faculty.
At the graduate level, the department offers a Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Ph.D. in Engineering degree. Our internationally renowned faculty conducts sponsored research in high temperature materials, tire technology, advanced manufacturing, composite metamaterials, biosensors, polymer adhesives, human factors engineering, energy conversion and storage, nano-engineering, biomimicry, and several more cutting-edge research topics.
Annual research expenditures in the department average $2.5 million. Graduate students receive teaching or research assistantships from the department or faculty grants, and industrial assistantships sponsored by the active industry market in the Northeast Ohio area. These are great opportunities for a deeper immersion into the work along with financial support to help with tuition.
Thanks for taking the time to visit our site. If you see me on campus, please say “hello.” Meeting future engineers and helping them be successful is why we do what we do.
Sergio D. Felicelli, Ph.D., F. ASME
Professor and Department Chair
Department of Mechanical Engineering
The University of Akron