As you explore your options for pursuing an undergraduate degree, The University of Texas at Arlington’s College of Engineering should rise to the top of your list. Located in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area, UTA is the most comprehensive engineering school in the region.
The school’s location is within a few miles of dozens of corporations, including the headquarters of some of the largest corporations in the world. Its campus is easily accessible from anywhere – a mere 30 minutes from the international airport – and there are dozens of opportunities to enjoy yourself outside of class, including great food, shopping, the arts, professional sports, music and outdoor recreation.
Here, seven departments offer 11 undergraduate degree programs:
- Aerospace Engineering
- Architectural Engineering
- Biomedical Engineering
- Civil Engineering
- Computer Engineering
- Computer Science
- Construction Management
- Electrical Engineering
- Industrial Engineering
- Mechanical Engineering
- Software Engineering
If you’re highly motivated, you can take advantage of several “fast track” M.S. and B.S.-to-Ph.D. options. Fast track programs allow undergraduate students to receive dual undergraduate/graduate credit for up to nine hours of undergraduate coursework, reducing the path to a master’s degree by about one semester. The B.S.-to-Ph.D. program is an accelerated degree track in which the student bypasses the M.S. thesis and proceeds directly to Ph.D. dissertation research.
The university prides itself on the diversity of its student population – in the College of Engineering, a large number of students are international, and there are dozens of organizations for students from various countries. This diversity allows a stimulating exchange of ideas that makes the campus stronger.
“Although being an international student made it hard for me to navigate at first, the supportive professors made it easy for me to find ways to achieve my goals. Professors guided me through several opportunities and trained me to be the professional I am today. From classes to research techniques, UTA gave me wings I needed to fly,” says Bioengineering student, Shravya Kashyap Attravanam.
Your primary reason for heading to UTA is to get a degree that will help you land a job. Though the school can’t make any guarantees, its graduates are well-respected in industry and earn positions with top corporations. The College of Engineering hosts two career fairs each year, with more than 90 companies across all seven disciplines represented at each one. These fairs are in addition to the two sponsored by the entire university community.
Internships are an important part of engineering education, and UTA encourages students to pursue them.
“Many students branch out to look for positions nationwide instead of locally. Internships are found through a variety of sources; career fairs, online postings, professors’ referrals, specific research projects and networking through student organizations. We offer workshops, résumé reviews and mock interviews to help students prepare for job searches,” said Carole Coleman, Co-op and Internship Co-ordinator for the College of Engineering.
Justin Hawthorne, a senior majoring in both mechanical and aerospace engineering, spent the 2017-18 academic year working as a professional intern with engineering teams at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida as part of the Disney Professional Internships Program.
Hawthorne worked on various mechanical, plumbing and attractions maintenance projects at all four Walt Disney World theme parks, two water parks, and its retail, dining and entertainment district, Disney Springs. Half of his internship was spent at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, where he helped maintain the Rock ’n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith ride and the character droid BB-8.
He says the one-on-one time with Disney engineers, including the opportunity to test and adjust attractions coming to the new Toy Story Land, was instrumental.
“There was one job where a pipe needed to be fixed, but it’s hard to do when it’s underground. I suggested moving the pipe above ground and camouflaging it with landscaping, and the engineers adopted my suggestion. Another time I designed a new water backwash filtration system for an area in Epcot and I got to share the updated procedures with the maintenance team. There’s a lot to learn to be an engineer, and I made the most of this opportunity,” he says.
The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education has designated UTA an R-1: Doctoral University—Highest Research Activity institution; this category is limited to the top doctoral research universities in the United States. This puts the university in an elite group of 115 institutions, including Harvard, MIT and Johns Hopkins.
The College of Engineering accounts for nearly half of the university’s research expenditures each year, and more and more, undergraduate students are the beneficiaries of this research activity. UTA’s president and Engineering Dean Peter Crouch have made undergraduate research a focus area, and funding opportunities are available for qualified students. There are dozens of options to pursue your research interests alongside faculty who are international leaders in their field.
The recruiting team frequently fields questions about campus safety. It’s understandable – you’re travelling hundreds, if not thousands, of miles from home and your family wants to be sure you’ll be OK. Rest assured that, although crime does occur, this is a safe campus. In fact, last spring The National Council for Home Safety and Security named UTA one of the 100 safest college or university campuses in the United States.
Finally, events throughout the year allow students to work together on exciting projects, showcasing their work to members of industry and the community. For example,
- All undergraduate students must complete a capstone project prior to graduation. This project is a group effort; you learn to work with students from different engineering areas, just like you will in a real work environment.
- The College of Engineering Innovation Day is a showcase of student research that brings industry members to campus and allows students to present the results of year-long research projects, many funded by the College.
- The Dean’s Freshman Challenge pairs first-year students with upperclassman mentors to solve real-world problems in tandem with professional engineers working for the City of Arlington and others.
- Engineers Week, held each February, is a celebration of engineering and features lectures, social activities and free food.
Are you interested in learning more about UTA’s College of Engineering? A recruitment officer from UTA will be in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines in November:
- November 13, Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard Road City Center, 4-9 p.m. Register for free here.
- November 14: Ritz Carleton, Kuala Lumpur, 2:30-8 p.m. Register for free here.
- November 15: MACEE Kuala Lumpur, 18th Floor, Menara Yayasan Tun, Razak, 200 Jalan Bukit Bintang, Academic Advising 3-4 p.m., Call 603-2166-8878 to register for free.
- November 17: Intercontinental Hotel Jakarta, 12:30-6:30 p.m. Register for free here.
- November 19: Makati Shangri-la Manila, 2:30-8 p.m. Register for free here.