Andra Petrean, Pre-Engineering Advisor and Associate Professor of Physics
Austin College provides excellent preparation for students interested in engineering careers by developing strong foundations in science and math while offering a broad, well-rounded education.
"Tech company CEOs across the country agree that liberal arts training—with its emphasis on creativity and critical thinking—is vital to the success of their business."
— Fast Company’s The Future of Work
"Technology alone is not enough. It’s technology married with liberal arts, married with the humanities, that yields the results that make our hearts sing."
— Steve Jobs, Apple Computer
You may wonder ...
The Pre-Engineering Program at Austin College offers specific advantages over a traditional engineering program. AC students:
- Learn in an engaging, interactive environment with small class sizes and access to professors,
- Conduct authentic research with professors in leading science and engineering fields, and
- Develop a diverse set of skills, including oral and written communication, to address 21st century challenges.
Austin College coursework provides a strong foundation in sciences, mathematics, and the liberal arts. Students take a variety of courses in physics, math, chemistry, computer science, English, and other humanities and social sciences. Specific course requirements depend on the engineering discipline and engineering school.
Entering students should be prepared to take physics and calculus courses in the fall semester of the freshman year.
Please contact the Pre-Engineering advisor for specific course information.
Since Austin College does not offer an engineering major, students will declare a major in a traditional discipline – usually Physics, Chemistry, Computer Science, or Mathematics. Yet as long as the Pre-Engineering course requirements are met, students have flexibility to choose any major.
Students interested in Pre-Engineering should meet with the Pre-Engineering Advisor at the following times:
- Prior to starting the freshman year: We want to ensure that students are registering for the proper courses in the first fall semester.
- Freshman Year: Students should make an appointment with the Pre-Engineering advisor to discuss their three to four year plan.
- Course Registration Every Semester: We want to make sure that you are on track.
- Major Declaration: For students participating in the 3/2 program, a Declaration of Dual Degree must be filed at the same time as the major declaration.
- Whenever you need: We’re here to help.
Bachelor’s Degree from Austin College and
Graduate Degree from Engineering School
With this option, students graduate with Bachelors of Arts degree (usually in Physics, Chemistry, Computer Science, or Mathematics) from Austin College in four years. They apply to Master’s or Ph.D. engineering programs of their choice. Recent AC graduates have been accepted at Texas A&M, University of Texas at Austin, University of Texas at Dallas, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, University of Virginia, and University of Colorado-Boulder.
Austin College recently signed a Gateways agreement with the UT-Dallas Materials Science and Engineering program. By fulfilling specified entrance requirements, Austin College students qualify for accelerated admission into the Master’s program. Please contact the Pre-Engineering advisor for more details.
Dual-Degree Program in Engineering
(3/2 Engineering Program)
This option provides students the opportunity to earn two undergraduate degrees by obtaining a liberal arts background before specializing in an engineering field. Students study at Austin College for three or four years and then attend engineering school for two to three years. At the end of this time, they receive a Bachelor of Arts degree from Austin College and a bachelor’s degree in engineering from the cooperating institution.
Austin College is one of a select group of liberal arts colleges with cooperative agreements with Columbia University and Washington University in St. Louis. Entrance requirements vary among engineering disciplines.
Pre-Engineering Success Stories
Spot on! As a student at Austin College, Aryn helped chart Austin College’s meridian line during construction of the IDEA Center. After earning a B.A. in Physics at Austin College, she continued her education in the Master’s Program at Louisiana Tech in Mechanical Engineering. In grad school, Aryn works on a NASA-funded project to fabricate… [Read More]
Mark served as Student Body President while at Austin College, but he really achieved greatness with plastic wrap. He earned a B.A. Austin College in Physics and Mathematics, then went on to the joint MS/MBA Program at University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign in Electrical Engineering and Business. Mark’s master’s thesis investigates the economics of solar photovoltaics.… [Read More]
Traci tested the waters in New Zealand during Austin College’s Jan Term. She earned a B.A. at Austin College in Physics and Religious Studies, and a M.S. at the University of Colorado-Boulder in Environmental Engineering. Tracy works at one of the premier water engineering firms in the nation. This is a perfect career for Tracy… [Read More]
No sweat! Sean is cool under pressure with his presentation skills honed at Austin College. He earned a B.A. at Austin College in Physics and Mathematics, a B.S. at Columbia in Industrial Engineering, and a M.S. at MIT in Transportation. Sean manages Intel’s supply from wafer starts to SKU-level build plans for a product family… [Read More]