About the Department
Welcome to Engineering!
Our faculty hold doctoral degrees from such schools as Johns Hopkins University, Rutgers University, and Cornell University and are distinguished scholars and scientists. They publish articles in leading journals, receive significant support from major funding agencies and provide expert consulting to private companies and public agencies. Students get research experiences by working with our faculty on research projects leading to presentations at local and international conferences. The Engineering Department has a number of state-of-the-art teaching and research labs. As internship opportunities from local companies arise, they are made available to our students.
Engineering combines mathematics and scientific principles to create real-world applications. In deciding to study engineering, you have taken the first step toward joining a remarkable profession. If you are puzzled on exactly what engineers do, you are not alone. There is no other profession quite like it, because engineering is so broad and diverse that it is almost impossible to give it a neat and concise description. Engineering is markedly different from the professions such as medicine, law, and education. The public is usually somewhat confused about what engineers do, and one of the principal reasons for this is because they do so many different kinds of things impacting everyday life in so many different ways.
It has become commonplace to observe that there is practically nothing we use in our daily lives that has not been subject to the influence of engineers. The connection is obvious when we drive a car, cross a bridge, fly in an airplane, use a computer, or watch television. The connection is less obvious when we buy a book in a bookstore, pick up a package of frozen vegetables at the supermarket, or purchase a home.
Within the broad field of engineering, there are a wide variety of disciplines that focus on different aspects of the engineering. At UMass Boston, we offer degrees in two engineering specialties:
- Electrical Engineering
- Extremely broad, and most relevant to almost everything in our daily life, electrical engineering ranges from fancy toys to highly sophisticated electronics like computers, audio, and video components. A BS degree in electrical engineering prepares students for work in such diverse fields as telecommunications, microelectronics, power electronics, and RF electronics, working for such companies as Raytheon, BAE Systems, Draper Laboratories, and a host of small to medium-sized local and national startup companies.
- Computer Engineering
- Integrating aspects of electrical engineering and computer science, computer engineering focuses on the design, analysis, and application of computers and on their applications as components of systems. Computer engineers work on projects ranging from microprocessors to supercomputers to circuit design, as well as related fields such as robotics.
There has always been a great demand for engineers. As the economy continues to grow at a rapid pace, so does the need for the latest technology as well as the people who invent and apply it. For the past few years, there has been a shortage of engineers nationwide, including Massachusetts. Thousands of engineering positions in Massachusetts alone are left unfilled, even with high salaries. The average salary of engineers is nearly twice of that across all industries. It certainly pays to be an engineer.