What is Mechanical Engineering?

Mechanical engineering is the analysis, design, and development of mechanical systems. Mechanical engineers combine design, manufacturing, industry collaborations, and research innovations on a daily basis to further advances in mechanical design.

To learn more about mechanical engineering here at Rochester see:

Our Program

Based on a firm foundation of basic science, applied mathematics, and engineering sciences, the Department of Mechanical Engineering offers a rigorous program designed to prepare well-trained, creative, responsible engineers capable of assuming leadership roles in their profession.

Students apply the latest software to problems in the mechanics of:

  • Solids and fluids
  • Materials science
  • Mechanical systems
  • Advanced power applications

Broad hands-on laboratory and advanced design projects offer significant experience in experimental and computational work. These experiences complement a curriculum that includes a strong focus on the analysis, design, and development of mechanical and thermal systems.

In addition to strengthening leadership and communications skills necessary for excelling in the field, the program offers a deep understanding of the broad social and economic impacts of engineering.

We apply these same principles to the geomechanics undergraduate degree program, which is offered jointly with the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences.

Educational Objectives*

The overall educational objective of our program is to develop effective practitioners in mechanical engineering and associated fields.

Within a few years from their diploma, our graduates will confidently apply knowledge in the basic sciences, mathematics, engineering analysis, computation, experimentation, and design to address emerging and evolving engineering challenges.

Our graduates will contribute to the advancement of their chosen field, while remaining mindful of the ethical, safety, and social implications of their work. They will be able to communicate effectively and work in diverse and multidisciplinary teams, and will be well equipped for leadership roles in industry, academia, and government, locally, nationally, and internationally.

In keeping with the continuously evolving nature of mechanical engineering, we expect that our alumni will engage actively in lifelong learning and professional development activities, and that many of them, inspired by research experiences as undergraduates, will continue their education in advanced degree programs.

*Approved by the Department of Mechanical Engineering faculty and the Industrial Advisory Board in January 2021.

Student Outcomes

To achieve the educational objectives described above, the mechanical engineering program is designed to provide students with important knowledge and skills in key areas.

All students who acquire the bachelor of science degree in our mechanical engineering program will have an ability to:

  • Identify, formulate, and solve complex engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics
  • Apply engineering design to produce solutions that meet specified needs with consideration of public health, safety, and welfare, as well as global, cultural, social, environmental, and economic factors
  • Communicate effectively with a range of audiences
  • Recognize ethical and professional responsibilities in engineering situations and make informed judgments, which must consider the impact of engineering solutions in global, economic, environmental, and societal contexts
  • Function effectively on a team whose members together provide leadership, create a collaborative and inclusive environment, establish goals, plan tasks, and meet objectives
  • Develop and conduct appropriate experimentation, analyze and interpret data, and use engineering judgment to draw conclusions
  • Acquire and apply new knowledge as needed, using appropriate learning strategies