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The Wheels Project - Engineering at Wheaton College
Engineering
Engineering student works on project with lab glasses
Engineering
Engineering student metalwork
Engineering
Engineering students discussing prototype with whiteboard and equations
Engineering

Engineering

Why Study Engineering?

Welcome to a world of creativity and problem-solving! Engineers turn scientific ideas and discoveries into practical solutions that serve humanity. You will learn to serve others by applying engineering knowledge to meet the practical needs of individuals, businesses and communities. And you emerge as one of the most highly sought-after employees around the world.

Wheaton offers two exceptional pathways to an engineering degree: a 4-Year General Engineering program and a 3-2 Dual Degree Engineering program. Choose the path that’s best for you.

99%
2021 alumni employed or in graduate school within 6 months
2
program paths: 4-year or 3-2
50
Years of Engineering Studies

4-Year General Engineering Program

The 4-year General Engineering degree offers a comprehensive engineering education within a Christian liberal arts framework in 4 years as part of the incredible Wheaton College residential community. Students can stay connected with the Wheaton community, participating in athletics or other student organizations, for all four years without needing to transfer to or travel between other campuses.

Concentrations

This path currently includes a concentration in Mechanical Engineering, and other concentrations are currently in development.

Liberal Arts Advantage

This outstanding degree program combines a Christian Liberal Arts education, including our innovative Christ at the Core general education curriculum, with robust, hands-on engineering coursework for the 21st century. Your engineering education will feature small class sizes, integration of Christian faith with engineering practice, and project-based learning with an emphasis on teamwork across all four years. These projects teach collaborative skills; problem definition in addition to problem solving; communication through reports and presentations, design, prototyping, and fabrication; and provide real-world engineering experience that employers are seeking.

Preparing for the Future

With this degree, you will be prepared for a wide range of engineering work after graduation and/or more specialized engineering education at the graduate level as a next step.

3-2 Dual Degree Engineering Program

As a dual degree student, you’ll get three years of Wheaton’s faith-based residential college experience before completing your engineering degree at an ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology)-accredited school. 

As you discover your engineering passion(s), you’ll be able to choose a transfer school based on your specific career interests. Maybe aerospace or architectural engineering? Or perhaps biomedical or computer engineering. Your dedicated program adviser can help you figure it out! 

Graduate with Two Degrees

You will graduate with two degrees, a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree in Liberal Arts Engineering from Wheaton, and a Bachelor of Science degree in a specific engineering field from an ABET–accredited engineering program at another institution.

Take Advantage of Wheaton's Special Agreements with ABET-accredited Schools

Wheaton has special agreements with Illinois Institute of Technology (Illinois Tech), Northern Illinois University (NIU) and Washington University in St. Louis (WashU) that include easy-to-follow program guides. Wheaton also has an affiliation with Case Western Reserve University.

Students completing their engineering coursework at a school in the vicinity of Wheaton College (e.g. Illinois Tech, Northern Illinois University, or University of Illinois - Chicago) during the last two years of the five year program, by virtue of their continuing in the Wheaton College dual degree program, may remain in Wheaton College housing and may continue to participate fully in extracurricular activities at the College, including athletics. 

Side-by-Side Program Comparison

4-Year General Engineering Program

3-2 Dual Degree Engineering Program

4 years at Wheaton

3 years at Wheaton, 2 at an an ABET-accredited school of your choice

Graduate with a BS in Engineering from Wheaton

Graduate with a BA or BS in Liberal Arts Engineering from Wheaton and a BS in a specific engineering degree from 2nd school.

Experience a Christ-centered residential community all 4 years

Experience a Christ-centered residential community by living on campus at Wheaton for 3 years if you transfer, or 5 if you attend a local campus  within commuting distance for years 4-5

75 engineering, math, and science credits

31-37 engineering, math, and science credits from Wheaton + additional credits from an ABET- accredited school of your choice

Great for students interested in studying engineering with a strong Christian liberal arts foundation, who wish to begin their engineering career after 4 years of study or want broad preparation for future graduate school specialization.

Great for students who want a Christian liberal arts foundation and already know that they want to specialize in a particular engineering field such as Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Architectural Engineering, Materials Science, Aerospace Engineering, Industrial Engineering, etc.


Wheaton College Engineering Wheels Presentation

Hands-On Engineering Projects

All of our engineering courses include hands-on projects and elements of engineering design plus exclusive access to a dedicated design lab with state-of-the-art prototyping equipment.

Wheaton College IL Engineering Students

Internships

Most engineering students complete at least one summer internship in their chosen field, often leading to permanent job offers after graduation. See internship opportunities >

Wheaton College Engineering Program Coordinator Jeff Yoder

Engineering Program Coordinator

Dedicated engineering program coordinator Jeff Yoder is here to guide you through the program.

Wheaton College IL Engineering Lab
State-of-the-Art Engineering Lab

The Wheaton College Engineering Lab, located in the Meyer Science Center, is a dedicated, flexible design lab with state-of-the-art prototyping equipment exclusively for engineering student use. The lab gives students the space and resources to design, prototype, and build a variety of projects. 

Engineering Opportunities Outside the Classroom

  • Ingenium Engineering Club - Ingenium strengthens Wheaton's engineering community by providing a place for students to work together on interdisciplinary projects. Ingenium engages students in extracurricular engineering design projects for internal and external clients.
  • Collaborative Research - Many Wheaton students get involved in research with Wheaton faculty or in partnership with scientists at nearby Fermilab or Argonne National Laboratory.
  • Teaching Assistant Positions - A highlight for many of our majors is working as a paid teaching assistant in the department. Students may work alongside faculty in class, grade homework, run help sessions, or set up and manage lab equipment.
  • Observatory Assistant Positions - Students staff our observatory and help other students and the general public view the night skies. Our observatory houses a 24" Planewave telescope with scientific-grade accessories and several smaller 8-16" telescopes.
  • Global Programs and Studies (GPS): Semester study-abroad programs, summer study-abroad programs, spring break co-curricular trips, and international internships are always an option in Wheaton's program.

What Will I Learn?

Wheaton engineering students begin with a core set of engineering, math, physics, and chemistry courses. They then branch into a set of courses that prepare them for one of many fields of engineering.  Wheaton engineering students have received degrees in a wide variety of specialty fields including: 

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Agricultural Engineering
  • Architectural Engineering
  • Bio-Medical Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Computer Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Engineering Mechanics
  • Environmental and Civil Engineering
  • General Engineering
  • Geotechnical Engineering
  • Industrial Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Systems Engineering

Consult the course catalog for a full list of engineering courses.

Engineering News and Stories

 

Possible Careers for Engineers

Skilled engineers are some of the most highly sought-after employees around the world. Engineering occupations are expected to grow as much as 10 percent in the next 10 years, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The Center for Vocation and Career will be happy to partner with you to explore the many career options available to you with this degree.

An engineering degree can take you many places.  The obvious direction is to become an engineer!  As a civil engineer you may design roads, bridges and other structures, or the land that they sit on.  A mechanical engineer is usually someone who works with machines that generate, distribute or use energy.  This could be anything from a simple crank to a rocket, or the HVAC system in your house.  An electrical engineer designs, develops and maintains electrical systems for a wide range of applications.  And a chemical engineer turns raw materials into useful products, from food to fuel and much more in-between.   Of course these are only some of many engineering fields you may work in.

But your engineering degree may take you in another direction.  The type of critical, analytical and creative thinking that you learn as an engineer helps you to identify a problem, figure out a solution, and follow-through on its implementation.  This sets you up well to work in management, law, medicine and many other fields.  So what do people with engineering degrees do?  Almost anything they put their minds to.

Engineers often study specialty fields within their discipline.  For instance, a mechanical engineer may study Ground Vehicle Systems or System Dynamics and Control.  A civil engineer may specialize in Geotechnical Engineering or Structural engineering.  The list of options is very long.  Usually these engineers will get a Master of Science degree, but if they are interested in research or teaching, they may pursue a PhD.

Engineering schools where our students have finished the dual degree:
  • Auburn University
  • Case Western Reserve University
  • Dartmouth College
  • Florida Atlantic University
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Illinois Institute of Technology
  • Indiana University - Purdue University
  • Lafayette College
  • Northern Illinois University
  • Northwestern University
  • Ohio State University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Purdue University
  • Rutgers University
  • St. Louis University
  • Texas A&M University
  • University of Arkansas
  • University of California–Davis
  • University of Florida
  • University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
  • University of Iowa
  • University of Lowell
  • University of Massachusetts Amherst
  • University of Michigan
  • University of Minnesota
  • University of Nebraska
  • University of North Dakota
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • University of Texas Austin
  • University of Virginia–Charlottesville
  • University of Wisconsin
  • Valpraiso University
  • Vanderbilt University
  • Virginia Tech
  • Washington University St. Louis
Engineering is problem-solving, and while any good engineering education provides the knowledge to solve the problems, studying at Wheaton took me much deeper. My fellow students and professors took joy in understanding the principles that govern God's creation - the fundamentals of engineering. — Jaclyn Baker '13
The dual degree program at Wheaton has a greater number of general education requirements than most traditional engineering schools. . . . Wheaton's breadth of courses helped strengthen key skills many employers are looking for in their workforce, especially communication and working well in a team. — Colleen Chapman '04