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Engineering Science

Why Study Engineering Science?

So you are good at physics, biology, and mathematics. You are drawn to engineering but you sense that there are many new opportunities to be found in combining skills and knowledge in interdisciplinary ways. Getting your bachelor’s degree in engineering science could give you just the combination you are seeking.

Engineering science is administered through the Division of General Engineering and is Vanderbilt’s interdisciplinary engineering degree. If you major in engineering science at Vanderbilt, you will be able to use your analytical and problem-solving skills to build future professional careers. You can tailor your own individual program to prepare yourself for careers in various engineering fields, technology-based entrepreneurship, mathematics, science/technology policy, teaching, technical communications, technology consulting, project management, nonprofit administration, and other areas that encourage nontraditional combinations of engineering courses.

Vanderbilt Engineering Advantages

If you get a degree in engineering science at Vanderbilt, you will study with faculty who recognize and appreciate the growing importance of a broad-based interdisciplinary engineering background. You will have the opportunity to focus your program of study in ways that have specific interest to you, from among fields as diverse as engineering management, communications of science and technology, managerial studies, human and organizational development, or materials science. You have the option of developing a unique plan to study an area for which facilities and faculty competence are available but not organized within an existing degree program at Vanderbilt.

Plus you will be able to draw on the wealth of knowledge and experience of engineering, science and humanities professors throughout the university—some of the top minds in the world in their fields. Your professors will also be terrific mentors and will help you find the best application of your talents and interests. You will be challenged to stretch yourself to embrace the worlds of science, engineering, economics, humanities, and social sciences.

Special Opportunities at Vanderbilt Engineering

Do you want to do field and laboratory research during the summer?  Take a terrific summer internship, with the possibility of leading to a job offer?  Do you want to learn first-hand about how to work as part of a multidisciplinary engineering team while working as an engineering consultant?

These are a few of the opportunities available through the School of Engineering. You might participate in National Science Foundation-sponsored research experiences for undergraduate programs, both at Vanderbilt and at other universities. If you achieve a strong academic record, you can qualify for senior independent study courses in engineering science and engineering management which encourage independent thinking and research in areas of interest.

Then there are the opportunities you can access as a Vanderbilt student. You will have the best of both worlds as an engineering student and a Vanderbilt student.  You will have the opportunity to establish close ties to your professors and fellow engineering students while being fully engaged in the broader Vanderbilt University community with students from all over the globe.

Engineering science is flexible enough to encourage at least one study abroad experience in order to round out your undergraduate experience. The School of Engineering has dozens of approved overseas options and you can select from non-engineering specific programs as well.

Diverse Course Offerings

The engineering science curriculum largely draws from courses taught in other departments across the campus. However, in the engineering science program you can take courses ranging from a first-year seminar on Moore’s Law to courses in science and technology, public policy, energy and sustainability, and social history of technology.

Historically, the most successful engineering science graduates have developed truly unique programs of study aligned with deep interests in a couple of topics  while working in close consultation with their faculty advisers to prepare them for clearly defined careers.

Career Opportunities

Your undergraduate degree in engineering science will not qualify you to be a licensed professional engineer, but it will prepare you for a wide range of jobs with government, private consulting companies, and a variety of major industries. For the past several years engineering science graduates have had plenty of career opportunities with firms such as AT&T, Deloitte, Dish Network, McKinsey & Co., Walt Disney and numerous other corporations. Additionally graduates have had success in admission to graduate schools including medicine, veterinary medicine, law, architecture, education and social sciences.


Christopher J. Rowe
Professor of the Practice of Engineering Management
Director of the Division of General Engineering
342 Featheringill Hall
VU Station B 351518
Nashville, TN 37235
Phone:  (615) 322-3479
Fax:  (615) 322-7062

Engineering Science Website