William B. Burnsed Jr. Department of Mechanical Engineering
Mechanical Engineering Mission
The mission of the the Mechanical Engineering Department is to provide quality education at both undergraduate and graduate levels, and to create and disseminate knowledge and technology in the field of mechanical engineering.
What is Mechanical Engineering and what do Mechanical Engineers do?
Mechanical Engineers design and study machines and systems that move or that convert energy. That involves everything from microscale sensors and activators to spacecraft for exploration of the universe.
Mechanical Engineers are inventors. They work in automotive, aerospace and marine transportation to invent ways to move people and things efficiently. They develop new energy systems to generate power while reducing carbon emission. Mechanical Engineers design medical devices that improve health and extend life. Mechanical Engineering is an exciting and fascinating profession.
Mechanical Engineers are versatile problem-solvers. They design and build devices and systems of all sizes –ranging from nanoparticles for delivering drugs and treating disease, to the next generation of space exploration vehicles. Mechanical Engineers are developing new, sustainable sources of energy and inventing safer and more efficient vehicles for land, sea, and air. Mechanical Engineers solve problems to improve peoples’ lives.
The USA Mechanical Engineering (ME) Department offers the Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (BSME). The degree is accredited by ABET. Students also can pursue tracks in Aerospace Engineering (126 credits total) or in Biomedical Engineering (129 credits total) to prepare for careers in those fields.
Requirements for a Degree
The undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering requires the completion of 126 credits. Mechanical engineering students are required to take the Mechanical Engineering discipline specific Fundamentals of Engineering examination of Alabama or another state prior to graduation. All electives must be approved by the student’s advisor.
For students interested in post-graduate education, the ME Department offers several options for graduate study. A student can earn a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME), through either a thesis or non-thesis option. The non-thesis, coursework-only MSME program is particularly geared to graduates who want to pursue a master’s degree part-time.