ECU Engineering program to begin in fall
(Mar. 29, 2004)
East Carolina University plans to enroll about 30 students in its new engineering program in the fall, with a goal of expanding to admitting about 100 new students each year within the next few years.
Dr. Ralph Rogers, dean of the College of Technology and Computer Science, which will be the home of the new program, said admission will be competitive and graduates will be prepared "to survive, thrive and lead in the 21st century global economy.
"We will have an environment to prepare students for the world they will encounter when the graduate," Rogers said. The University of North Carolina Board of Governors this month approved the new bachelor's degree in general engineering with a concentration in systems engineering. It will be the first engineering program in North Carolina east of Interstate 95 and the only systems engineering concentration in the state.
Rogers said a system engineer's job "is to find out how to best solve problems given a wide variety of constraints, but especially time and money." Systems engineering is a rapidly emerging field that looks at ways to integrate technology, people and organizations to achieve a specific mission, he said.
ECU's program will address three goals, Rogers said:
* To support economic development by creating professionals to meet the general engineering needs of Eastern North Carolina's public and private sectors. To develop engineering problem solvers to work in general and emerging disciplines not addressed by traditional engineering approaches.
* To attract, retain and graduate students, especially Eastern North Carolina students, including women and underrepresented minorities.
"We want to turn out engineers who are able to function in a complicated, fast-changing environment," Rogers said. "They will need to know how to get smart fast in a new area."