Ursinus Enters New Pre-Engineering Partnership

Ava Compagnoni, avcompagnoni@comurphy2ursinus-edu

Courtesy of Washington University

Ursinus has announced that it will provide another opportunity for students on a pre-engineering track to enroll and earn a dual degree at the McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. The program allows students to earn a liberal arts degree at Ursinus and an undergraduate engineering degree from Washington University. Washington University is a new addition to the list of programs Ursinus is affiliated with; it joins Columbia University and Case Western Reserve University (CWRU). Ursinus’ affiliation with Columbia allows students to enroll in a combined plan program in engineering at the university, and the dual degree program in engineering at Case Western Reserve University.

The Dual Degree Program at Washington University is an attractive alternative to traditional engineering curricula. Program graduates are liberally educated engineers, with strong communication and problem-solving skills, a broad background in the humanities and social sciences, and a high-quality technical education. The program’s ultimate goal is for students to graduate with job placement, acceptance into graduate or professional school, or commitment to a short-term program. This is an opportunity for Ursinus students to get involved in a school that is in a different environment than that of Collegeville, PA. While the possibility of remote learning still stands for the next academic year, students will still be interacting with a multitude of peers who come from across the country or seas, a greater global population than at Ursinus. 

At Washington University there is a strong research presence, and students are encouraged to pursue independent research projects, internships, cooperative education, international experiences or graduate study. The university is a National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates site, and about half of its engineering students participate in research. Washington University has invested $275 million in engineering facilities since 2000, and 92 percent of their graduates have either landed a paid position or are pursuing advanced degrees within six months of graduating, making this partnership an attractive option for Ursinus students who wish to earn a valued liberal arts degree while also pursuing engineering.

Students who are interested in the Dual Degree Program are advised to contact one of the Pre-Engineering advisers at the earliest opportunity in order to plan a program of study. There are core pre-engineering courses that the Dual Degree Program requires that all candidates take among a wide range of majors, between Physics, Mathematics, Chemistry and Computer Science. To obtain eligibility, students must complete the equivalent of 90 semester hours at Ursinus with a grade point average of 3.25 or greater. 

The Ursinus community is lucky to have Professor Lew Riley as the Pre-Engineering Program Coordinator, as well as the long list of faculty advisers to guide their students in the direct path for their career choice. It takes an immense amount of dedication and hard work to get through these programs, luckily Ursinus ensures their students will be fully prepared before entering additional schooling or the professional world.