About the mechanical engineering program
Penn State World Campus offers a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) program that can be completed totally online. This program is designed to offer the highest level of flexibility, allowing students to customize their course arrangements to align with their individual interests and career goals. This varied range of potential specializations reflects the wide spectrum of roles found within the industry itself.
“One of my favorite things about mechanical engineering as a discipline is that it’s so diverse, and modern mechanical engineering is no longer just about robots, engines, or mechanism design,” said Dr. Catherine Berdanier, assistant professor of mechanical engineering and director of the online MSME program. “Instead, modern mechanical engineering is all highly interdisciplinary, either applying traditional methods to novel topics or using novel methods borrowed from other disciplines to illuminate new facets of traditional domains. In our department, we have a vibrant research agenda tapping on nearly every aspect of engineering, from bioinspired design to laser diagnostics for combustion, to kinesiology and engineering design and education.”
One of the hallmarks of this program is the emphasis on in-depth, hands-on research and the development of practical skills that professionals need in the field.
“Mechanical engineers are in really high demand in industry because they are educated to understand how systems work, and this breadth gives them the ability to then apply that expertise within a specific industry domain.” Dr. Berdanier said. “Graduate school, then, is about depth and finding a specialty area in which to develop expertise. One of the best things about our online MSME program is that our online students conduct research alongside our faculty members to apply theoretical foundations from course work to solve cutting-edge research problems, thereby developing research skills, critical thinking skills, and an even deeper, more authentic understanding of an engineering domain.”
Faculty, administrators, and course designers involved with the MSME program make it a priority to continuously assess and update the program’s courses and curriculum to reflect current industry trends and employer demands.
“We seek to keep our course work relevant to building deep theoretical foundations, but also introducing highly relevant course work to meet the needs of our learners as they pursue careers as thought leaders,” Dr. Berdanier said. “As such, we continually update our course offerings to ensure topics and application areas in high demand are featured, such as computational fluid dynamics, robotics, turbomachinery, and machine learning.”
Career opportunities for mechanical engineering program graduates
Graduates of the mechanical engineering program will be prepared for careers in a wide range of exciting and in-demand roles, in fields such as biomedicine, aerospace, power generation, robotics, nuclear energy, and more. A master’s degree in this area is an important credential that gives graduates a valuable advantage in the job market.
“As an engineer, a graduate degree offers significant career advancement opportunities, allowing degree holders to contribute to more difficult or specialized projects, pursue technical leadership or project management roles, or help shape technological visions differently than employees who hold a bachelor’s degree,” Dr. Berdanier said.
Why choose Penn State World Campus for your mechanical engineering program?
Penn State is one of the most recognized and respected universities in the engineering field and is ranked highly in the U.S. News & World Report Best Online Programs rankings. The online mechanical engineering master’s program at Penn State World Campus provides the rigorous academic standards that employees expect, while also offering the flexibility that busy working adults need. You can complete your courses online from anywhere, at your own pace.