Engineering has always been a good career choice, as it offers several opportunities and has good earning potential. However, the first step to becoming an engineer — and the most important one too — is through getting a degree from one of the best engineering schools in Virginia. The problem is that you will have a number of choices – some of them will be expensive, others will have limited courses available. In short, all engineering colleges in Virginia have unique attributes, and you should know about them before finalizing a decision.
Although there are many others too, the following are some of the very best engineering schools in Virginia.
The School of Engineering and Applied Science
When you want to be in an institute that places a great emphasis on research and development, you should look no further than the University of Virginia. The same kinds of research facilities are available in the School of Engineering and Applied Science at University of Virginia. There, you will find some of the very best engineering research centers, laboratories and consortia.
They focus their research efforts in four main areas – nanotechnology, bioengineering, energy and environment, and information science and technology. You will also find research centers in the school – one is for Applied Biomechanics to student the impact of speedy vehicle crashes, and the other one is for safe and secure nuclear energy. The availability of these research opportunities turns the University of Virginia’s School of Engineering and Applied Science one of the very best in the country.
Graduate students can choose from a list of degree programs – they can choose to be a master of engineering, a master of science or a doctor of philosophy in several degree programs. These departments include civil engineering, chemical engineering, biomedical engineering, and materials science engineering – you can also choose an accelerated master’s degree in system engineering.
In terms of fees, it is like most engineering schools in Virginia. The application fee is $60 for U.S. residents, which remains unchanged for international students. If you enroll yourself into a full-time program, you will have to pay $12,762 a year (in state), which will go up to $22,086 a year for out-of-state students. For in state, part-time students, the tuition fee is $689 per credit, which goes up to $1,207 per credit for out-of-state students.
Though you may consider the tuition fees to be on the higher side, it’s definitely worth the money with the kind of research facilities it has to offer. Moreover, the idea of gaining international experience through a variety of study abroad programs in places like Argentina, Germany, Brazil, France, Australia, etc., makes it one of the very best engineering schools in Virginia.
Founded in 1872, it’s the largest school in Virginia. It’s located in Montgomery County in the New River Valley and has more than 8,400 students in its engineering school. In 2011, the US News and World Report ranked the school 12th in the list of best colleges.
A testament to the quality education standard maintained at this engineering school is that Virginia Tech is now reaching out to federal research agencies and participating in federal scientific and engineering endeavors. The added benefit of this effort is that students at the engineering school will be able to find jobs and internships with the federal government in civil engineering, defense, and other government projects.
The long list of research opportunities and facilities complements the degree offerings and makes it one of the top Virginia engineering schools. Graduate students can go for master of engineering, Master of Science, or Ph.D. in as many as 20 disciplines – the departments include chemical, biomedical, and aerospace engineering, along with a couple of rather unusual programs, including mining engineering and ocean engineering.
Another highlight is that the College of Engineering also allows you to study in the Washington, D.C., if you choose any of the four courses, including electrical engineering, computer science, industrial systems engineering, and civil and environmental engineering.
In terms of fees, it’s one of those Virginia engineering schools where you don’t have to pay a lot. In fact, the combination of low cost of tuition, high quality of education and lucrative opportunities makes it a perfect choice for students. Precisely, you have to pay $65 for application fee and $10,048 a year for being a full-time student – this is for in state students. The fee for enrolling in a full-time course for an international student is $19,497 a year – high but still a lot less than many other Virginia engineering colleges.
The College of Science Engineering and Technology at Norfolk State University
Norfolk State University, a public, state-supported institution, is one of the very best you can find in Virginia. The University has five schools, including Liberal Arts, Education, Social Work, Business and Entrepreneurship, and College of Science, Engineering and Technology.
Formerly known as School of Science and Technology, the College of Science, Engineering and Technology maintains a student base of over 1,600 students. A variety of programs are available for undergraduate students – there are eight academic departments in total, including Chemistry, Biology, Engineering, Computer Science, Nursing and Allied Health, Mathematics, Physics and Technology. The list of graduate programs in science and technology is consistently expanding, and now you can even opt for the Master’s Degree in Electronics Engineering, Computer Science and in Optical Engineering.
Considered one of the finest Virginia engineering colleges, it has always played a pivotal role in the University’s glorious 65-year history. With interesting research facilities, the college ensures that students have enough experience to qualify for a good job soon after completing their degree. It’s worth mentioning that though the tuition fee is on the higher side, you can take advantage of different scholarship programs, including the clued McDaniel Scholarship that offers up to $3,000 a year. There are other scholarship programs are also available, but you need to meet eligibility requirements, which usually include a GPA of 3.0 and enrollment in a full-time program.