Expanding engineering

Many of the world’s grandest challenges can only be addressed by the field of engineering, yet the number of engineering students in the U.S. has steadily declined in recent years. Purdue is stepping up to help solve this problem and dramatically increasing the number of students and faculty with the passion, curiosity and drive to engineer pathways to change.

Goals

  • Purdue Engineering will take a leadership role as part of the national call to graduate 10,000 more engineers per year, enhancing our state and national capacity for innovation, economic growth and solutions to global grand challenges.
  • The expansion will go beyond the already approved five-year plan that called for:
    • Increasing Engineering graduate student enrollment by 750.
    • Increasing Engineering undergraduate enrollment by 691.
    • Hiring 107 new engineering faculty.
    • Lowering the undergrad-to-faculty ratio from 21.2 to 1 to 18 to 1.
  • Engineering will explore additional ways to grow in existing and emerging areas such as interdisciplinary research collaboration, innovative joint degree programs, and comprehensive engagement of industry and countries.

Accomplishments

  • In fall 2015, the College of Engineering exceeded its undergraduate expansion goal a year ahead of schedule by enrolling a record 7,928 undergraduates — 150 students above the expansion target.
    • Undergraduate female enrollment also reached a record high in the STEM colleges in fall 2015.
    • In fall 2016, the college further exceeded its target, enrolling 8,412 undergraduates. 
  • Since the beginning of its five-year expansion plan in 2013, the College of Engineering has grown its student population by 1,953 and its faculty by 96.
    • Over the next year, the college anticipates the continued growth of graduate student enrollment and moderate faculty hiring, with a focus on completing facility renovation projects.
  • The College of Engineering’s undergrad-to-faculty ratio has been reduced from 21.2 to 1 to its current figure of 19.6 to 1.
  • Purdue is the top producer of female graduates in the engineering technology field, and the third-highest producer of women earning bachelor’s degrees in engineering fields, according to the American Society for Engineering Education.
  • Purdue's reputation for STEM excellence is recognized worldwide. In 2016, Purdue was ranked the No. 1 destination for international students in STEM disciplines, according to the Department of Homeland Security.

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