UW Bothell Receives Approval for Two New Engineering Degrees

March 18, 2014
CONTACT: Lisa Hall, 425-352-5461, lhall7@uw.edu

UW Bothell Receives Approval for Two New Engineering Degrees

Bothell, Wash. – University of Washington President Michael Young has approved two new undergraduate engineering degrees at the University of Washington Bothell. The new degrees are in computer engineering and mechanical engineering. They will both begin in fall 2014 and will be offered though UW Bothell’s School of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

A master’s degree in electrical engineering is also pending approval, and is expected to begin in fall 2014.

“This is an important milestone for the university as a growing resource for STEM education in the Puget Sound region,” says School of STEM Dean Elaine Scott. “These degrees will allow us to significantly increase the number of engineering graduates to meet the needs of local businesses and employers.”

The goal of the computer engineering (CE) degree is to create broadly‐educated professionals who can work at the intersection of electrical engineering and computer science.

“Computing systems and other electronic systems are intimately linked and it is critical that we can educate students who are comfortable designing systems within the intersection of these domains,” says Arnold S. Berger, Ph.D., division chair of engineering and mathematics in the School of STEM. “This requires workforce members who are knowledgeable in both domains, and understand how the domains interact, restrict or enable the interdependent capabilities.”

The mechanical engineering degree will offer learning and research opportunities in biomedical engineering and in power engineering, where electrical and mechanical technologies intersect.

“Given the campus’s proximity to a vibrant medical device industry and the growing interest statewide in renewable energy, biomechanical engineering and energy will be areas of strategic focus in the curriculum,” says Berger.

Also approved were two STEM minors in consciousness and physics. The minor in consciousness is believed to be one of the first of its kind in North America. It will bring together a variety of disciplines including psychology, neuroscience, medicine, physics, biology, artificial intelligence, and contemplative and experiential traditions to explore cutting-edge and controversial issues.

UW Bothell has been steadily increasing its STEM offerings in response to student and industry demand. Since 1998, UW Bothell has produced more than 1,000 graduates from the STEM fields. In that time, enrollment in the computing and software degrees has doubled. The electrical engineering program started with 24 students in 2009 and now enrolls 150 students.

The School of STEM now serves more than 800 students and has 44 full-time faculty. The university’s new $68 million science and academic building, which will house its STEM programs, is scheduled to open in August 2014. The building will enable UW Bothell to enroll 1,000 more students annually.

About UW Bothell: With more than 36 undergraduate and graduate degrees, options, certificates and concentrations, UW Bothell emphasizes close student-faculty interaction and critical thinking. UW Bothell builds regional partnerships, inspires change, creates knowledge, shares discoveries and prepares students for leadership in the state of Washington and beyond. For more information, visit www.uwb.edu.