Mechanical Engineering Students

Welcome to the Mechanical Engineering Department

Picture of students in a plankton exhibit

The profession of mechanical engineering is directed toward the design, manufacture, and system integration of a very wide variety of equipment ranging from manufacturing machinery and power generation equipment to consumer goods. Of central concern to mechanical engineers is the sound application of basic principles of solid mechanics, fluid mechanics and thermal sciences in the design, manufacture, and application of this equipment. Mechanical Engineering graduates obtain employment primarily with manufacturers, energy companies, consultants, and government agencies. Types of work performed by graduates include product design, mechanical design, testing, engineering management, engineering sales, design of manufacturing systems, and development of maintenance procedures. Mechanical Engineering graduates also often enhance their careers through graduate study in engineering, and some students also study engineering to build a scientific and technical foundation as a prelude to enrollment in medical, law, and business schools.

The focus of the Cal Poly Mechanical Engineering program is on education based on our "learn by doing" educational philosophy. Thus, the curriculum includes a large number of hands-on laboratories, integration of design throughout, and a senior project requirement for all students. Students are enrolled in engineering laboratories in all years of the curriculum. The program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, www.ABET.org.

The Mechanical Engineering Department is the home of the Donald E. Bently Center for Engineering Innovation. The center provides support for faculty, students, and visiting scholars for the advancement of research, education, and practice in mechanical engineering. A $6 million endowment to fund three professorships supports the center.

Upper division students in the General Concentration can choose professional elective courses from such courses as turbomachinery, robotics, mechatronics, composite materials, rotor dynamics, advanced mechanics, solar systems, internal combustion engines, heat and mass transfer, and courses emphasizing the petroleum, air conditioning, ventilating, and refrigeration industries. Students in the Mechatronics Concentration are prepared to enter the microprocessor based product design and factory automation job markets and to do advanced research in the areas of robotics, "intelligent" products and automated manufacturing. The HVAC&R Concentration prepares students for careers in the heating, ventilating, airconditioning and refrigeration (HVAC&R) industry, with a focus on the design of mechanical systems for commercial and industrial buildings.

Interested in studying Mechanical Engineering at Cal Poly?  Request information from Cal Poly Admissions.