Houghton, MI — The Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics (ME-EM) at Michigan Technological University has advanced four places in U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Graduate Schools” rankings. The rise in rankings moves ME-EM from 48th to 44th, which comes as the department celebrates its 85th anniversary.
The ME-EM Department has experienced a steady growth in research expenditures, rising from $13.5 million in 2009-2010 to $14.9 million in 2010-2011. The department has also seen an increase in graduate enrollment from 278 students in fall 2010 to 301 in 2011.
The advancement in ranking benefits Michigan Tech because families consider rankings when choosing a university. Increased enrollment yields myriad benefits to campus, while helping the community grow through increased demand for shopping and dining. Ultimately this increased enrollment benefits the state of Michigan because these student dollars support the Michigan economy.
“We restructured the department into groups focused on specific research topics, resulting in steady growth for research expenditures and increasing interdisciplinary collaboration,” said Brad King, PhD, director of research. “We also see this as recognition for our innovative approaches to education, such as involving undergraduate students in our research efforts.”
Undergraduate and graduate students in the department have opportunities to become heavily involved in faculty research projects during their studies, resulting in research as education.
“The rise in rankings is a substantial achievement for the faculty, staff, and students of our department. Their commitment to education through hands-on learning and collaborative research is recognized by both industry and academia,” said William Predebon, PhD, chair of the ME-EM department.