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50 Best Online Master of Mechanical Engineering Degree Programs

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online masters mechanical engineeringWere you the kid who always took toys apart in order to see how they worked? Consider yourself enterprising and good with machines? Do you excel at fixing issues with existing processes and creating news ways of making things work more efficiently? If you answered affirmatively to these questions, chances are you would be a good mechanical engineer. Wondering how you could get that advanced degree while still working and taking care of all of your current commitments? Online! This article will help you find your online mechanical engineering program, because we have culled through the available information on current master’s programs to bring you details on the best online Master of Mechanical Engineering degrees. We discovered that this online degree is not only one of the 50 most popular online master’s degrees, but also a great financial investment (according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Mechanical Engineers make more per hour than others in similar professions). Additionally, most online programs boast the same rigorous curriculum and experienced faculty as the on-campus programs, just offered entirely online, making the convenience hard to beat.

A field for professionals who like to make things work, mechanical engineering is one of the oldest and broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineering really begin to thrive during the Industrial Revolution when new manufacturing practices were being developed on a larger scale than ever before. Now, mechanical engineers utilize principles of engineering, mathematics, science, and physics to scrutinize, plan, construct, and improve upon machinery and mechanical systems and structures. A very exciting field, mechanical engineering professionals can specialize in a multitude of research areas. Additionally, there is a great deal of diversity in potential employment, for there are many other fields in which mechanical engineering can intersect, such as aerospace or nuclear engineering, biomechanics, or nanotechnology.

We have examined many programs offered online, and by focusing on the history behind the degree, we have assurance that all of the programs listed in our ranking are reputable and from schools that have been perfecting both the content and the delivery for decades (and some for more than a century!). Many good programs are offered online, and you’ll see that we offer you a list of the best of the best. To find one that fits your needs, read on to discover the best online mechanical engineering graduate programs currently available!

See Also: 10 Best Master’s in Industrial Engineering

In addition to the Master’s Programs Guide Core Methodology, this criteria helped develop this ranking:

  • Program history– the extent to which the subject matter or degree has been offered historically, determined by the founding of the school or college of engineering, the mechanical engineering department, the point in the university’s history that the ME program was established, or the year specific engineering classes were first offered

See Also: Aerospace Engineering Master’s Programs 

#1. Purdue University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Purdue Online College of Engineering offers both a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program and an interdisciplinary Master of Science in Engineering (MSE/MS) with a concentration in Mechanical Engineering completely online. Both degrees are 30-credit hours and allow students to craft a Plan of Study with their advisor in order to customize the degree—and there are twelve research areas from which to choose for a great deal of flexibility and customization. The MSME and the MSE/MS degrees are housed within the School of Mechanical Engineering, which was founded in 1882 and the first of the engineering schools at Purdue. In addition to the experienced faculty, Mechanical Engineering students benefit from a dedicated Office for Industrial Experience. This Office provides a “connection to industry” for students, with career resources through a Center for Career Opportunities, project design help, and other services. Two Mechanical Engineering graduate certificates are also offered online: Noise Control or Applied Heat Transfer.

Admissions website

Purdue University is known as “Indiana’s Land-Grant University,” meaning that the school was founded in part with assistance from the federal Morrill Act of 1862. Another component that aided the establishment of this public research university was the support of John Purdue and Tippecanoe County residents—they provided additional funds and land to serve as the campus in West Lafayette, Indiana. John Purdue was the major benefactor of the school and stipulated that it be named in his honor, thus the ground was broken for Purdue University in 1871. Three years later the first classes were held with 39 students in attendance. Now over 40,000 students are enrolled in more than 250 academic degree programs that are offered through Purdue’s ten colleges and online. The original campus in West Lafayette is the flagship of the Purdue University System, and this institution of higher education also has designation as a sea- and space-grant university. Regional accreditation is provided by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

#2. University of Southern California

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering is provided entirely online through the online delivery method DEN@Viterbi. Requiring a minimum of 27-credit hours and offering a thesis or non-thesis option, as well as several concentration tracks (Thermal and Fluid Sciences, Engineering Design, and Mechanics and Materials), the MSME program dates back to the earliest days of engineering classes first held at USC in 1905. Award-winning faculty head up the MSME program’s coursework, and provide additional mechanical engineering degrees online as well—such as the MS in Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering (Computational Fluid and Solid Mechanics). Distance education has been provided by USC Viterbi for nearly half a century, and the attention to online students’ needs are reflected int the comprehensive “student services and IT services in wide ranging areas of advisement, homework and exams, technical support, and more.”

Admissions website

A local judge in Southern California in the late 1800s advocated for an institution of higher education, which would become the University of Southern California (USC). Judge Robert Maclay Widney also recruited the financial support of three businessmen who supplied acreage in Los Angeles for the school. USC was officially established in 1880, and the doors opened to 53 students and ten instructors. Now this private research university enjoys an enrollment of over 45,000 students—it is the oldest university in the state of California. The seventeen colleges of USC provide more than 200 academic degree programs, and the school has designation as both a sea-grant and a space-grant institution. A member of the elite Association of American Universities, USC’s motto—“let whoever earns the palm bear it”—speaks to the triumphant nature of the school and its students. USC has regional accreditation provided by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

#3. Stanford University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Stanford’s comprehensive, part-time Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree is provided online program through the Stanford Center for Professional Development. The 45-unit degree is housed within Stanford’s Department of Mechanical Engineering, the roots of which were present when the first three mechanical engineering professors came on board when Stanford was founded in 1891. The faculty today is comprised of respected and knowledgeable professionals, and students choose from a specific research group or “depth” to construct their customized course of study. There are fourteen pre-approved depth areas from which students can choose, ranging from Automatic Controls to Fluid Mechanics to Dynamics to Robotics and Kinematics, just to name a few. The degree can be completed in about three years and some on-campus requirements must be met. A dedicated Mechanical Engineering Student Services Office provides support, and many complimentary webinars, course previews, and archived lectures are provided to prospective students.

Admissions website

Leland Stanford Junior University—more commonly known as Stanford University—was established as a tribute to a child lost to typhoid fever in 1884. Wealthy California senator Leland Stanford and his wife, Jane, lost their only child just before his sixteenth birthday. They determined to build something positive and beneficial out of their grief, and so developed the school with their fortune and livestock farm of over 8,000 acres, in what is now Stanford, California. The school opened in 1891 with more than 550 students. Due to the growth of technological entrepreneurialism in the area that was fostered and advanced by Stanford faculty and graduates, Silicon Valley was developed and the school has become one of the top universities in the nation. A private research university, Stanford now serves more than 16,000 students with over 65 undergraduate majors and nearly 100 graduate programs in the seven academic schools and colleges, and regional accreditation comes from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

#4. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Through the College of Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Engineering Online provides both a Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering (M.Eng.ME) degree and a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree completely online. Housed with the Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering (now known as MechSE but first referenced at the school in 1870), both degrees have coursework taught by esteemed faculty members “who are all active in research and publish in high-impact journals.” The two degrees match their on-campus counterparts in terms of rigorous coursework and student expectations. The M.Eng.ME is a non-thesis, coursework-based degree requiring 32-credit hours and can be completed in just two semesters on a full-time basis. The 32-credit hour MSME program offers both a thesis and a non-thesis option, and students generally complete the degree in eighteen months to two years. Regardless of the program chosen, all online MechSE students have access to dedicated engineering student resources.

Admissions website

One of the first schools to be established in response to the passage of the Morrill Act of 1862, the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (University of Illinois or UIUC) was founded in 1867 as the Illinois Industrial University. Located in the twin Illinois cities of Champaign and Urbana, the institution welcomed 77 students to the first classes in 1868. A tension between the first president, John Milton (who wanted a liberal arts institution) and other school leaders, (who desired an industrial arts and agricultural approach), led to Milton resigning in 1880. His influence remains, however, as the school has strong liberal arts leanings in addition to being a research university. The flagship campus in the University of Illinois System, UIUC has over 45,000 students enrolled in more than 250 academic degree programs in the sixteen schools and colleges. A public land-, sea-, and space-grant school, the Higher Learning Commission grants full regional accreditation.

#5. The Pennsylvania State University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) online degree program at Penn State is delivered entirely online through Penn State World Campus. The 32-credit hour program promotes a “collaborative” academic experience in which students “build strong ties with other students and gain perspectives from other disciplines and industries” for a comprehensive, advantageous degree. Students work with advisors to craft the degree to fit their needs and professional goals, and can choose from a wide selection of classes such as “Engineering Optimization,” “Principles of Turbomachinery,” and “Finite Elements in Engineering.” Student testimonials and praise dot the program website, and the program and faculty credentials speak for themselves. Mechanical engineering was one of the earliest offerings of Penn State (the first classes being offered in 1868), and Penn State has pioneered online education through the World Campus since 1998, so students have assurance that the discipline and the delivery of their education is teeming with quality.

Admissions website

Known most commonly as Penn State, the school officially named “The Pennsylvania State University” was originally established as the Farmer’s High School of Pennsylvania in 1855. With a location in Centre County, Pennsylvania, the school was instrumental in the development of the Morrill Act of 1862. Evan Pugh, Penn State’s first president, advocated for the Morrill Act, also known as the Land-Grant Act, which enabled state schools to be developed with funds from the selling of federal lands. When the Act passed in 1862, Penn State became a land-grant university, and still remains the only one in the state of Pennsylvania (as well as also being a space-, sun-, and sea-grant school). The main campus in University Park is the flagship of the 24 campuses across the state and enrolls nearly 50,000 students. Penn State (as named since 1953) is a public research university with regional accreditation from the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

#6. University of Virginia

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Program Details: Virginia Engineering Online (VEO) provides the Master of Engineering (ME) in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering degree program from the UVA School of Engineering and Applied Science Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE). It’s the same degree earned as in the on-campus program, and students enrolled in the online format offered through this first engineering school in the South (established as the School of Civil Engineering in 1836) are connected to a long history of “engineering excellence.” Additionally, UVA is part of the Online Graduate Engineering Consortium, allowing online students to take up to half of their 30-credit hours from five other excellent universities. The award-winning MAE faculty honors “a tradition of excellence and a pioneering spirit of entrepreneurship in both education and research” through the coursework offered in two tracks: Mechanics and Thermofluids. Students construct a plan of study with guidance from dedicated Virginia Engineering Online Student Academic Advisors and Graduate Coordinators.

Admissions website

Founded in 1819 by Thomas Jefferson as “a public university designed to advance human knowledge, educate leaders and cultivate an informed citizenry,” the University of Virginia (UVA) held its first classes in 1825. Located in Charlottesville, Virginia, the school very intentionally did not affiliate with any religious denomination at its inception and has remained nonsectarian. UVA is comprised of eleven academic schools and the College at Wise in Southwest Virginia, and is the first southern university elected to membership in the elite Association of American Universities. Classified by the Carnegie Foundation as having very high research activity, UVA is a public research institution with nearly 25,000 students enrolled in over 120 academic degree programs. The scenic and iconic campus covers almost 1,700 acres and is designated as a World Heritage site. Recognized for its secret societies and history, UVA is the flagship university of the state and has regional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

#7. University of South Carolina

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The University of South Carolina (which was reestablished in 1880 as the South Carolina College of Agriculture and Mechanical Arts and offered engineering classes since the beginning) offers both a Master of Science (MS) and a Master of Engineering (ME) in Mechanical Engineering degree entirely online (the ME degree provides a non-thesis option, and students in the MS program culminate the degree with a thesis). Both degree programs require 30-credit hours and are available in the College of Engineering and Computing Mechanical Engineering Department. Seven specialization areas are provided specifically in mechanical engineering, such as Thermo-fluids, Mechanics of Materials and Nondestructive Evaluation, and Nanotechnology. Typical coursework includes classes such as “Intro to Finite Elements Analysis in Mechanical Engineering” and “Advanced Mechanics of Materials,” and the curriculum is presented online by the research-focused and dedicated faculty. The department employees “forerunners” in the field, evidenced by the department doubling in the last decade to become the largest in the college.

Admissions website

The University of South Carolina began as South Carolina College in 1801 in Columbia, South Carolina. Classes for the nine students began in 1805, and there were just two professors on staff. The institution was very successful until the financial devastation suffered by the state after the Civil War forced it to close briefly. Reopening in 1873 as the University of South Carolina (USC), the school was quite progressive, admitting women and students of color. Closing and reopening again as a segregated college, the school grew to become the USC of today and is now the flagship of the University of South Carolina System. A public coeducational sea-grant university with high research activity, USC serves more than 34,000 students at the main campus, with sixteen academic schools and colleges offering degree programs. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission provides the regional accreditation for USC.

#8. Texas A&M University

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Texas A&M J. Mike Walker ’66 Department of Mechanical Engineering’s Master of Engineering (MEng) in Mechanical Engineering degree program can be completed entirely online, and students are allowed up to seven years to finish the 30-credit hour program. Housed within the College of Engineering (the largest college at Texas A&M and one which has been in existence since the school opened in 1876), the degree has core courses that are offered as options and not required, covering topics such as “Theory of Elasticity,” “Advanced Product Design,” and “Advanced Engineering Thermodynamics.” All students will compile a final portfolio (prepared during the duration of study) to showcase what has been learned and how well the student has incorporated the learning outcomes. Faculty members head up many research opportunities for students and have a wide range of publications and awards to prove their experience, and students benefit from the field-specific student resources offered by Engineering Online.

Admissions website

Founded under the name Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas, Texas A&M University (Texas A&M) was established in 1871 and benefited from the Morrill Act of 1862. Classes began in 1876, and the campus was located in Brazos County on more than 2,400 acres of donated land. Gaining its current name in 1963, Texas A&M’s main campus in College Station, Texas has doubled in size and is supplemented by another campus in Galveston. Along with the land-grant designation, Texas A&M is also a sea- and space-grant university, and this public research institution of higher education enrolls more than 66,000 students currently, making it the largest campus by student enrollment in the Texas A&M University System as well as nationally. There are nineteen schools and colleges within Texas A&M, which provide nearly 400 academic degree programs. Regional accreditation is granted through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#9. University of Texas at Austin

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The fully online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree through UT Austin’s Texas Engineering Executive Education is housed within the Cockrell School of Engineering, which can trace its roots to the day the cornerstone was laid for the university in 1882. The “industry-relevant and immediately applicable” 30-credit hour curriculum does not require a thesis and is rich with courses such as “Statistical Methods for Process Control and Manufacturing,”Materials Science and Engineering,” and “Applied Thermodynamics.” Students progress through the program as a cohort, which provides them with built-in community support. The faculty members are readily available, and their collection of publications and patents is impressive. The unique and thoughtful online learning model is ideal for working professionals who have an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering (or related degree) and at least one year of relevant work experience. Student support is provided, with resources such as the Cockrell School’s Engineering Career Assistance Center to help students be successful.

Admissions website

The University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) is the flagship school of the University of Texas System, and its establishment was put into motion by the state legislature in 1876. The first brick was laid in Austin, Texas in 1882, and just a year later in 1883 221 students were welcomed to class in the year of the school’s founding. A public research university, more than 51,000 currently enrolled students participate in nearly 400 undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs offered in the eighteen colleges and schools that comprise UT Austin. With the desire to “transform lives for the benefit of society,” UT Austin has a mission to “achieve excellence in the interrelated areas of undergraduate education, graduate education, research and public service.” Considered a Public Ivy school, UT Austin is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities and is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#10. University of Florida

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program at UF is housed within the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) in the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering (which was one of the four colleges of UF when it moved to the Gainesville campus in 1909). Provided entirely online through the UF Electronic Delivery of Graduate Engineering (EDGE) distance learning delivery method, the 30-credit hour program offers a thesis and a non-thesis option. Students follow one of three plans of study (“Dynamics, Systems, and Control,” “Solid Mechanics, Design, and Manufacturing,” or “Thermal Science and Fluid Dynamics”), and an External Advisory Board supports the expert faculty and provides guidance and “continuous improvement” to the programs and MAE Department. In addition, the MAE Department presents six online graduate certificates via EDGE for professionals who don’t desire a full master’s degree. All certificates are made up of three courses, which are available to students asynchronously.

Admissions website

With a history that can be traced to several schools in areas of Florida, the University of Florida (UF) has grown to become a doctoral university with the highest research activity (as designated by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education). Located in Gainesville, Florida, UF had a clear start when the Florida Legislature passed an Act that consolidated the state’s public institutions of higher education and the State University System of Florida was instituted. This was in 1905, and the University of the State of Florida opened the doors to over 100 students for the first classes in 1906. Becoming simply “university of Florida” in 1909, UF now enrolls almost 55,000 students and is a land-, sea-, and space-grant institution. Over 300 programs are offered in sixteen academic schools and colleges, and UF is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#11. John Hopkins University

Online Master of Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Johns Hopkins University part-time online Master of Mechanical Engineering degree program is called Johns Hopkins Engineering for Professionals. Through the Department of Mechanical Engineering in the Whiting School of Engineering, the 30-credit hour program provides four focus areas to customize the degree: Manufacturing, Robotics and Controls, Solids/Mechanics of Materials, or Thermofluids. The required core course “Mathematical Methods for Engineers” is taken the first semester, and classes based on the students’ focus then follow. Mechanical Engineering was one of the first concentrations offered by Johns Hopkins in the 1900s, and online programming has been offered by Johns Hopkins Engineering since 2001—students can therefore be assured of both the reputation and the quality of the online program. Additionally, the faculty’s expertise and the available student services guarantee a highly-rewarding and supportive environment. Online Information Sessions are held periodically to introduce prospective students to faculty and current students and learn about the program.

Admissions website

Johns Hopkins University, located in Baltimore, Maryland, was named for the man who helped finance the establishment of the institution of higher education (as well as The Johns Hopkins Hospital). The Quaker, known for his philanthropy and for being an abolitionist, was a bachelor without any heirs when he passed away in 1873. The legendary amount he left in his will for the school and medical center was an outrageously large amount ($7 million) by late-19th century standards, and thus Johns Hopkins will be forever remembered for his philanthropy. The doors opened to students in 1876, and the university is one of the founding members of the American Association of Universities. The ten academic schools provide programs to over 24,000 currently enrolled students, and Johns Hopkins is a private university with a Carnegie Classification of doctoral university with the highest research activity. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education provides regional accreditation.

#12. University of California Los Angeles

Online Master of Science in Engineering – Mechanical

Program Details: The Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science (HSSEAS) Master of Science in Engineering (MSE) – Mechanical degree at UCLA is provided as a Master of Science Online (MSOL) program. The MSE degree is located in the Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering (MAE) and open to students who do not have an undergraduate degree in mechanical or aerospace engineering (but who must take two additional classes:Aerodynamics” and “Advanced Strength of Materials”), several focus areas are provided for customization (such as the multidisciplinary Mechanical Engineering in Medicine). A coursework-based, 27-credit hour program, the impressive “research experience of . . . faculty is reflected in the classroom experience, enabling . . . ME students and graduates to go out and address the world’s grand challenges.” Students are required to complete the program in three years, but the comprehensive resources and services provided help students achieve that goal successfully.

Admissions website

The University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) was begun as the University of California’s “Southern Branch” in 1919 and originally offered two-year undergraduate programs. The programs were so successful that the school quickly outgrew its initial name and location, becoming the University of California at Los Angeles in 1927 and moving to a new campus in the Westwood district of Los Angeles in 1929. Over 5,000 students attended classes the first year in the new location, and the school would officially replace the “at” in the name with a comma in 1953. A public research university (with the highest research activity as recognized by the Carnegie Foundation) within the University of California System, UCLA offers over 300 academic degree programs to the nearly 45,000 enrolled students through seventeen schools and colleges. A land-grant university and member of the Association of American Universities, UCLA is regionally accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.

#13. University of Delaware

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The UD College of Engineering offers an online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program in the Department of Engineering. The 30-credit hour program, which is the same as the on-campus program, can trace its roots back to 1891 when the first mechanical engineering degree was provided at UD. The broad mechanical engineering discipline can be customized through the five areas of research focus offered by the Department (Biomechanical Engineering, Clean Energy and Environment, Composites and Advanced Materials, Nanotechnology, and Robotics and Control). The curriculum is provided online by the award-winning faculty, who are “recognized as global leaders in research and education,” and includes classes such as “Intermediate Solid Mechanics,” “Linear Systems,” and “Orthopedic Biomechanics.” Resources at every level are provided to online students to help them succeed, and for professionals who do not desire a full master’s program, an online Graduate Certificate in Composites Manufacturing & Engineering is available.

Admissions website

Established in 1743 as the Free School in New London, Pennsylvania, the University of Delaware (UD) would grow to become classifed by the Carnegie Foundation as a very high research institution of higher education. The school was founded by Presbyterian minister Reverend Dr. Francis Alison, and it would go through name and location changes before settling in Newark, Delaware as the Academy of Newark in 1769 (Delaware was part of Pennsylvania until 1776). Several more name changes would occur before the institution merged with the Women’s College of Delaware in 1921, and finally UD was born. More than 300 academic degree programs are provided through seven colleges that comprise the university, and UD enrolls over 23,000 students currently. As its mission, UD “exists to cultivate learning, develop knowledge and foster the free exchange of ideas,” and is a land-, sea-, and space-grant university with regional accreditation through the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#14. Missouri University of Science and Technology

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Missouri S&T, recently celebrating the centennial (established in 1916 as the Department of Mechanical Engineering), provides an online MS in Mechanical Engineering degree with both a thesis and a non-thesis option. Both options require 30-credit hours, and all coursework is delivered online synchronously through streaming video (although archived for students to review). Classes offered include varied topics such as “Advanced Fractured Mechanics,” “Viscous Fluid Flow,” and “Compliant Mechanism Design.” The faculty provide expertise in many research areas, and online students have support through Missouri S&T’s Global Learning – Distance Education Student Support Services. For students who do not wish to pursue a full degree (or who would like to start with a certificate before pursuing the MS), five online graduate certificates are offered through the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering: Composite Materials and Structures, Control Systems, Energy Conversion & Transport, Engineering Mechanics, and Manufacturing Automation.

Admissions website

Claiming distinction as “as one of the first technological institutions west of the Mississippi,” Missouri University of Science and Technology (“Missouri S&T”) was established in 1870 as the Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy. A Morrill Act of 1862 land-grant university located in Rollo, Missouri, Missouri S&T welcomed 28 students to class for the first time in 1871. Now, nearly 9,000 students are currently enrolled in just under 100 academic degree programs, and Missouri S&T offers all students the unique opportunity to conduct research in one of four “Signature Research Areas” (Advanced Manufacturing, Advanced Materials for Sustainable Infrastructure, Enabling Materials for Extreme Environments, or Smart Living) regardless of their major or academic program choice. A member of the University of Missouri System, Missouri S&T is also a space-grant institution of higher education, and regional accreditation for this coeducational public university is granted by the Higher Learning Commission.

#15. Iowa State University

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Master of Engineering (MEng) in Mechanical Engineering degree program at Iowa State University is provided online through Engineering-LAS Online Learning (the online delivery hub for College of Engineering and College of Liberal Arts and Sciences programs). The coursework-only MEng degree is located in one of the “University’s crown jewels,” the Department of Mechanical Engineering (ME), which has been an important part of Iowa State since the school first classes were offered in 1869 (in fact, the first degree ever awarded was in mechanical engineering). The curriculum is constructed of 30-credit hours and the core coursework is clustered into four discipline areas for students to choose an emphasis (Design and Optimization, Dynamic Systems and Controls, Materials Processing and Mechanics, and Thermo-Fluid Sciences). The extensive ME faculty is impressive and has experience in many research areas and collectively many publications between them. Students are provided with resources and services through online and engineering-specific student support.

Admissions website

Iowa State University (officially named “Iowa State University of Science and Technology” in 1959, but known most commonly as Iowa State) was established in 1858 as the Iowa Agricultural College and Model Farm. The first graduating class of 26 coeducational students would be welcomed to class for the first time in 1869, and since the Morrill Act of 1862 was passed while campus was being constructed, Iowa State became a land-grant university. Located in Ames, Iowa, campus originally covered 650 acres but has now grown to more than 1,800 acres, and the current student enrollment has increased to more than 35,000 students. This public university is also a space-grant institution, and nearly 300 academic degree programs are offered through the ten schools and colleges that make up Iowa State. The largest university in the state and Carnegie Foundation classified as having the highest research activity, Iowa State is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#16. Auburn University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Auburn Engineering Online and Continuing Education, provided through the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering offers a non-thesis MS in Mechanical Engineering degree program. The 30-credit hour program, in the historic Department of Mechanical Engineering (established in 1885), gives “students opportunities to obtain the skills necessary to define, formulate and solve novel problems” in a convenient, online format. Designed for students with an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering (or a bachelor’s in a similar, relevant field), the MS degree allows for a great deal of customization—students choose all of the coursework to construct the degree. The “ever-increasing list of faculty patents and inventions” should serve as confirmation that the program is strong and will be rigorous, but the student services provided should provide reassurance that online ME students will receive the support they need. For students who do not desire to pursue a full degree, the ME Department also provides a Tribology Engineering graduate certificate online.

Admissions website

Chartered in 1856 as the East Alabama Male College, a private liberal arts school, Auburn University was originally affiliated with the Methodist Episcopal Church South. The school became a public institution when it became a land-grant school in 1872 and was renamed Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama (it would change names again in 1899 and then became Auburn University in 1960). The first school in the South to participate in the benefits of the Morrill Act of 1862, Auburn is additionally designated as a sea- and space-grant university. One of the two flagships of the state of Alabama, Auburn is located in Auburn, Alabama and is comprised of twelve academic schools and colleges. Just under 30,000 students are currently enrolled in over 140 programs, and the Carnegie Classification states the coeducational school is at a “higher research activity” level. Regional accreditation for Auburn comes from the Higher Learning Commission.

#17. University of Arizona

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering (AME) at the University of Arizona’s College of Engineering (established when UA was founded in 1885) provides an entirely online MS in Mechanical Engineering degree program. The 32-credit  program offers four core focus areas (dynamics and control systems, fluid mechanics, solid mechanics and dynamics, and thermal sciences) from which students can choose an emphasis, and students can opt between a Master’s Thesis, a Master’s Report, or a Coursework-only plan of study. Additionally, students “learn from and work alongside professors internationally renowned for their research” just as their on-campus counterparts, with coursework in subjects such as mechanics of deformable solids, thermodynamics and radiation, and engineering mathematics. Student support is comprehensive—online students receive a personal Student Academic Success Specialist and have access to an enrollment team, tutoring, alumni career mentorships, and other resources to help them succeed (prospective students can even participate in a sample online course).

Admissions website

Prior to Arizona becoming a state in 1912, the Arizona Territory Legislative Assembly voted in 1885 to institute a state university as a response to the federal Morrill Act of 1862. Tucson was chosen as the campus location, and construction on the University of Arizona (UA or “Arizona”) began in 1887. The oldest institution of higher education in the state, UA offered the first classes to the initial enrollment of 32 students in 1891. Now the school boasts an enrollment of over 44,000 students and more than 350 academic degree programs. Twenty schools and colleges provide the programs to students either on-campus in Tucson (on a 380-acre main campus) on one of three other campus locations, or online, and Arizona has designation as very high research university from the Carnegie Foundation. A public land-grant university, the University of Arizona is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#18. Georgia Institute of Technology

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Georgia Tech’s Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program is provided entirely online through Georgia Tech Professional Education. Located within the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering (the oldest at Georgia Tech, with classes being offered for the first time in 1888), the degree is designed for students with an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering or similar discipline. Requiring a minimum of 30-credit hours, the degree offers twelve research areas, such as Mechanics of Materials, Automation, Robotics & Control, and Manufacturing. Students choose between a thesis and a non-thesis option and participate in classes like “Computer-Aided Design,” “Vibration-Mechanical System,” and “Combustion.” In addition to the online learning support and the array of student support services, the renowned faculty at the School of Mechanical Engineering is a collection of full-time, tenure-track professors (nearly 100) who have many years of research experience and publications to attest to their knowledge and skill in the field.

Admissions website

Established to provide an opportunity to promote technological education in an area that was mostly agricultural, the predecessor to Georgia Tech was founded in 1885 in Atlanta, Georgia. Known as the Georgia School of Technology, the institution opened its doors in 1888 to 84 male students. Mechanical Engineering was the only degree offered at first, but throughout the years more programs were added and in 1948 the name of the school was changed to highlight the broader academic focus: Georgia Institute of Technology (known largely as Georgia Tech). A member of the University of Georgia System, Georgia Tech has additional satellite campuses domestically and overseas. This public research university has a current student enrollment of nearly 30,000 and is comprised of six academic colleges. With “very high research activity” as classified by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, Georgia Tech is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#19. North Carolina State University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) at NC State is provided entirely online through Engineering Online. The 30-credit hour MSME program is rooted in a rich history since NC State was started as an Agriculture and Mechanic Arts school and engineering distance programs have been offered since 1978. Housed within the College of Engineering’s Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE), six research areas are provided for students to pursue their particular area of interest (such as “Nanoscale Science and Engineering,” “Thermal Sciences and Energy Systems,” and “Structural Mechanics, Materials and Manufacturing”). Extensive, field-specific student resources are available through the NC State Online and Distance Education engineering department, and many tips and guides are provided to help MSME students succeed. The faculty members are not only highly experienced and reputable, but also exceedingly adept at online instruction. In addition, Engineering Online provides news and information for current and prospective students.

Admissions website

North Carolina State University (NC State or NCSU) was founded as the North Carolina College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts in Raleigh, North Carolina in 1887. The land-grant institution welcomed 72 students in 1889 with one building and six professors that first year. NCSU sent representatives to remote areas of the state to train farmers in best agriculture practices, which helped the school grow. Officially renamed in the 1960s, North Carolina State University at Raleigh (“at Raleigh” is not often used, even in official settings) is the flagship member of the University of North Carolina System and the largest institution of higher education in the state. Offering over 250 academic degree programs through twelve colleges to more than 35,000 currently enrolled students, NCSU is also a sea- and space-grant school and has earned the Carnegie Foundation classification of highest research activity. Regional accreditation comes from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#20. Stevens Institute of Technology

Online Master of Engineering – Mechanical

Program Details: Offering the first mechanical engineering degree in the history of the United States (available since the school was founded in 1870), Stevens provides a Master of Engineering – Mechanical degree program that can be accessed online. There are only two required core courses in the 30-credit hour program (“Modeling and Simulation” and “Engineering Analysis I”); the remaining classes can be customized based on the student’s choice in concentration (Product Design; Manufacturing; Thermal, Fluids, Energy; Pharmaceutical Manufacturing; Medical Devices; Robotics & Control; Micro/Nano Systems) and elective choices. The degree is located in the Department of Mechanical Engineering (the oldest and largest department at Stevens) in the Schaefer School of Engineering & Science, and students can opt to make it a thesis or a non-thesis degree. The faculty are experienced, currently holding patents, serving on task forces, and participating in cutting-edge research. Online students benefit from resources such as the Continuing and Professional Student Care Center to help them “flourish.”

Admissions website

In 1868 in Hoboken, New Jersey, the Stevens family had proven themselves to be adept at engineering, innovation, and philanthropy. The natural outgrowth of these qualities and talents led to the creation of the Stevens Institute of Technology (Edwin A. Stevens had passed away and bequeathed money specifically to establish the school). With a distinct focus on mechanical engineering, Stevens opened as a private institution of higher education in 1870 and has grown to consist of four schools and colleges: Schaefer School of Engineering & Science, School of Systems & Enterprises, School of Business, and College of Arts & Letters. More than 100 academic degree programs are offered to nearly 7,000 students currently, and the Carnegie Foundation recognizes Stevens as having a higher research activity level. The main campus is still located in Hoboken, but is joined by an additional location in Washington, D.C. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education provides regional accreditation.

#21. Columbia University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Housed within the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and offered entirely online though the Columbia Video Network (CVN), the MS in Mechanical Engineering degree at Columbia is a reputable, well-established (the department came into being in 1897) program. Requiring a minimum of 30-credit hours, the degree can be shaped by the student along with their advisor from among classes such as “Thermofluid Systems Design,” “Manufacturing Enterprise,” and “Intro to Control Theory.” Created for students with a bachelor’s of engineering background, the coursework is provided by faculty engineers with impressive credentials replete with publications and patents. Students services and resources through both the School of Engineering and the CVN are available to students, and for individuals who do not wish to pursue a full MS in Mechanical Engineering degree, two fully online twelve-credit hour certificate options are provided: Manufacturing Engineering and Mechanical Engineering—Sustainable Energy.

Admissions website

Established as King’s College by a royal charter from King George II of England in 1754, Columbia University is the oldest university in the state of New York and the fifth oldest nationally. The school was affiliated with the Anglican church and set up residence in New York, New York; eight students were the first in attendance. After the American Revolution, the school reopened in 1784 as Columbia College and gained university status in 1896 (the official name is Columbia University in the City of New York). In 1897 Columbia moved to its permanent campus in Morningside Heights, and it has grown to become one of the most selective and competitive schools in the country. Twenty academic colleges provide the programs for nearly 30,000 currently enrolled student, and this private Ivy league school has the Carnegie Foundation’s highest research activity classification. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education regionally accredits Columbia.

#22. University of Arkansas

Online Master of Science in Engineering

Program Details: U of A Online offers a Master of Science in Engineering (MSE) degree through the College of Engineering for students who desire a comprehensive, multi-discipline program (engineering has always been an important field at the University of Arkansas—the first mechanical engineering degree was awarded in 1891). Providing the foundational basics in core requirements of mathematics, computer applications, technical communications, and management, the 30-credit MSE degree integrates other traditional engineering discipline coursework along with mechanical engineering for a well-rounded program (students can choose mechanical engineering as their emphasis and focus nine credit hours towards it). The impressive faculty cover a wide range of research areas, and mechanical engineering emphasis classes include “Fundamentals of Aerodynamics,” “Thermal Systems Analysis and Design,” and “Advanced Fracture Mechanics and Structural Integrity.” Students typically complete the degree in under two years and are provided with specific engineering resources to help the find success.

Admissions website

The University of Arkansas (“U of A”) was founded in 1871 in Fayetteville, Arkansas in order to benefit from the federal Morrill Act of 1862. Originally named The Arkansas Industrial University, this land-grant university established a campus on a former farm site and opened its doors in 1872 to eight students. Though the first classes were held in an old barn, the school grew its curricular focus and became the University of Arkansas in 1899 due to a student-led petition. Over 27,000 students are currently enrolled, and eleven schools and colleges provide more than 200 academic degree programs. In addition to being a land-grant institution, U of A is also a space-grant university, as well as the flagship in the University of Arkansas System. A public doctoral research university with the highest research activity designation from the Carnegie Foundation, U of A is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#23. University of Alabama

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Identical to the on-campus program, the online MS in Mechanical Engineering degree from The University of Alabama is a non-thesis, 30-credit hour program offered through the renowned Bama By Distance. Housed within the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the historic College of Engineering (founded in 1909), the MSME degree program provides a wide array of focus areas, ranging from Additive Manufacturing to Computational Fluid Dynamics and Heat Transfer to Fatigue and Fracture Mechanics to Mechatronics. The faculty have impressive research experience and provide the environment that allows students to be “vital to the Department of Mechanical Engineering’s research efforts.” Specific courses include “Classical Thermodynamics,” “Nonlinear Control Systems,” and “Intermediate Gas Dynamics,” just to name a few, and the distance program requires a comprehensive exam in lieu of a thesis. Online students have the same student services and resources provided to residential students, as well as their own dedicated Student Services Team.

Admissions website

Prior to becoming a state, the Alabama Territory lobbied the United States Congress in 1818 to provide township designation for the area so a university could be established. Two years later in 1820, The University of the State of Alabama was founded—and it would be located in Tuscaloosa. The first classes were held in 1831, and 52 enrolled students graced the school in its first year. After the devastation of the Civil War, the university had to regroup and reorganize. Reopening as The University of Alabama (Alabama, “Bama,” or UA) in 1872, this institution of higher education is the oldest public university in the state and the flagship of the University of Alabama System. Over 38,000 students are currently enrolled within the thirteen academic colleges, and UA is both a sea- and space-grant school. Granted by the Carnegie Foundation with higher research activity designation, Alabama is provided with regional accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#24. Texas Tech University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Whitacre College of Engineering Distance Learning Program at Texas Tech offers a fully online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program. Provided through the Department of Mechanical Engineering (ME), the roots of which were established when Texas Tech was founded in 1925, the MSME degree requires 36-credit hours, and students can choose between a coursework only option or a Master’s Report. Students also can customize the degree through their choice in advanced mathematics classes, electives, and Concentration and Breadth requirements, in the areas of Dynamics and Controls, Thermal Sciences and Fluid Mechanics, Solid Mechanics and Materials, and Design. Support is provided from the beginning with a Distance Student Orientation, and continues with advising services and career resources. The credentials of the ME faculty are impressive, and online students receive the same academic benefits and attention as their on-campus counterparts.

Admissions website

Texas Tech University was established by the Texas Legislature as the Texas Technological College in Lubbock, Texas in 1923. Two years later classes began, and there were over 900 coeducational undergraduate students enrolled that first year (graduate classes were added two years later in 1927). The name changed to Texas Tech University (Texas Tech or TTU) in 1969, and Texas Tech is the flagship in the Texas Tech University System. The sixth-largest institution of higher education in the state, the campus covers almost 2,000 acres and over 36,000 students are currently enrolled. More than 300 academic degree programs are offered in the twelve schools and colleges that comprise Texas Tech, and the Carnegie Foundation has classified this public research university as having the highest research activity (one of only 115 schools to receive that designation). Regional accreditation for Texas Tech is provided by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#25. Colorado State University

Online Master of Engineering with a Mechanical Engineering Specialization

Program Details: The CSU Master of Engineering (ME) degree with a Mechanical Engineering Specialization is offered completely online asynchronously through the Canvas online learning platform. Housed within the Department of Mechanical Engineering, the 30-credit hour program is comprised of fifteen core courses focusing on topics such as “Metals and Alloys,” “Advanced Composite Materials,” and “Manufacturing Engineering.” Students choose from a wide range of electives to customize the degree, and all classes are taught by the same on-campus professors—faculty members who are inventors and innovators at the “forefront of mechanical engineering technology.” The program is located in the renowned and highly-selective Walter Scott, Jr. College of Engineering (which offered the first engineering program in the state), and students experience a coursework-based, “practitioner-oriented mechanical engineering degree” program. Student resources and services are comprehensive, ranging from academic advising to conflict resolution services to IT support.

Admissions website

Six years before Colorado became a state, the Morrill Act of 1862 incentivized the Territory to establish the Colorado Agricultural College in 1870. The land-grant school that would become Colorado State University (CSU) was located in the future city of Fort Collins, Colorado, and classes began for the first time in 1879. The flagship institution of the Colorado State University System, CSU currently enrolls more than 30,000 students and offers over 150 academic degree programs through eight academic colleges. A culture of environmental sustainability permeates the campus and the ideology of CSU—the school received the STARS (Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™) Platinum rating in 2015, the first such ranking a school has ever been awarded. A public coeducational institution of higher education, CSU is also granted with the Carnegie Foundation classification of having the highest research activity. Regional accreditation for CSU comes from the Higher Learning Commission.

#26. Case Western Reserve University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The practice-based, completely online MS in Mechanical Engineering degree from Case Western Reserve offers “a rich and engaging curriculum in a convenient digital environment.” The 30-credit hour program is open to students who have may not have an undergraduate engineering degree but who meet the admissions requirements, and it can be completed through the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering in just a year and a half. The department is located in the Case School of Engineering, which boasts a history traced back to the 1880 establishment of one of CWRU’s predecessor schools, the degree program presents a curriculum “designed by the best for the best,” with online classes such as “Advanced Engineering Analysis,” Fatigue of Materials,” “Vibration Problems in Engineering,” and “Applied Engineering Statistics.” The faculty boast impressive achievements, and online students benefit from their expertise through small class sizes and a hands-on research approach. An online engineering blog provides information for both current and prospective students as well.

Admissions website

Hudson, Ohio was the initial location of the school that would grow to become Case Western Reserve University. Founded as Western Reserve College in 1826, the institution moved in 1882 to Cleveland, Ohio. Finances provided by Amasa Stone (railroad mogul) encouraged the move, but five years before this, philanthropic Leonard Case Jr. made plans to endow a polytechnic school, also in Cleveland. Shortly after Case’s death in 1880, the Case School of Applied Science was established. Stone had made a caveat in his financial gift to Western Reserve—the school and Case would share adjoining properties. This was the beginning of a mutual relationship that would culminate in the formation of Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) in 1967. Nearly 12,000 students are currently enrolled in the academic programs of nine schools and colleges, and the Carnegie Foundation classification for this private doctorate-granting university is the highest research activity level. CWRU is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#27. University of Wisconsin-Madison

Online Master of Mechanical Engineering: Polymer Science

Program Details: Through the Department of Engineering Professional Development (EPD), students can participate in UW-Madison’s renowned Master of Mechanical Engineering: Polymer Science degree program. A 30-credit hour program with the backing of a strong mechanical engineering history (having first been offered at the school in 1875), most students are working professionals and can complete the degree entirely online in just two to four years. Two required courses (“Transport Phenomena in Polymer Processing” and “Engineering Design with Polymers”) are followed by the student’s choice of several required class topics and electives (such as “Fundamentals of Injection Molding” and “Experimental Mechanics”). Students and alumni benefit from the dedicated EPD Community & Support, which offers resources specific to engineering, advising, technical support, and other services. The faculty are experts in the field of polymer science, and the curriculum is constructed by an institution that is “internationally recognized for its research and teaching in polymer engineering and science.”

Admissions website

The idea for a university was present before the territory became a state, and when Wisconsin became the 30th state in 1848, the University of Wisconsin was established. Classes began the next year in Madison, Wisconsin, and seventeen students were in attendance—the main campus now covers nearly 1,000 acres. Known as University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW-Madison) since 1971, UW-Madison is the oldest in the state, the flagship in the University of Wisconsin System, and the official state university of Wisconsin. Nearly 44,000 students are currently enrolled in this land- and sea-grant institution of higher education, and over 400 academic degree programs are offered through the 20 schools and college. A Public Ivy university, UW-Madison is a doctoral research institution with the highest research activity as classified by the Carnegie Foundation. One of the founding members of the Association of American Universities, UW-Madison is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#28. University of New Mexico

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering with a concentration in Space Systems Engineering

Program Details: One of the first of its kind, the UNM Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program with a concentration in Space Systems Engineering “was developed with input from the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Space Vehicles Directorate.” The 34-credit hour, coursework only MSME program is offered entirely online through UNM’s Mechanical Engineering Department in the School of Engineering, which “opened in 1906 with a faculty of two and a single classroom” and has grown to be a leader in engineering innovation. The courses are taught by the “nationally recognized faculty” who meet the Quality Matters (QM) standards of online education excellence, and cover topics such as “Orbital Mechanics,” “Numerical Methods in Mechanical Engineering,” and “Introduction to Space Situational Awareness.” Student services are extensive, including Enrollment Coaching and Online Student Support, and student testimonials are provided to speak to the positive experiences and high-quality academics imparted through UNM Online.

Admissions website

Founded in 1889, before New Mexico was officially a state, the University of New Mexico (UNM) was voted into existence by the Legislative Assembly of the Territory of New Mexico. The school would be a state university once New Mexico joined the union, and classes began on the Albuquerque, New Mexico campus within a few years. Buildings were constructed utilizing a Pueblo Revival style of architecture, and campus now covers 600 acres. Proudly designated as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, UNM enrolls nearly 35,000 students across the main campus, branch campuses, and education extension centers. A public research university with the highest research activity classification from the Carnegie Foundation, UNM is the flagship institution of the state, and twelve schools and colleges provide over 200 academic degree programs. With a mission to share “resources and strategies that encourage students to reach ambitious academic goals and exceed their own expectations,” UNM is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#29. University of Cincinnati

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Master of Engineering (MEng) in Mechanical Engineering online degree at the University of Cincinnati’s College of Engineering and Applied Science is an accelerated program that can be completed in just eighteen months. Six start dates are offered for this 30-credit hour, non-thesis program, and the curriculum is constructed of courses such as “Effectiveness in Technical Organizations,” “Intelligent Systems Theory,” and “Design for Manufacturability and Assembly,” and all students complete the degree with the Master of Engineering Capstone Project. Based in the Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering (MME), the degree offers an “industry-focused and practice-oriented approach” and has a long history at UC—the original College of Engineering was established when the school was founded in 1870. The mechanical engineering faculty are well-regarded and knowledgeable (one professor literally wrote the book on engineering education), and graduates of the MEng program testify that the program helped them achieve career opportunities through the skills they gained.

Admissions website

In the early 1800s, two schools were established in Ohio that would lead to the creation of the University of Cincinnati (UC). Cincinnati College and the Medical College of Ohio merged in 1870 to form Cincinnati College (although there had been a plan in the works since 1858 when a wealthy resident of Cincinnati, Charles McMicken, bequeathed funds to the city in his will for the establishment of an institution of higher education). Expanding and achieving full university status, UC is a public research institution with multiple campuses throughout Cincinnati, Ohio and almost 45,000 enrolled students. Fourteen schools and colleges offer 350 academic degree programs, and the Carnegie Foundation bestows a classification of highest research activity on UC. One of the largest universities in the nation, UC is a member of the University System of Ohio and a space-grant institution. The Higher Learning Commission provides regional accreditation to UC.

#30. Michigan Technological University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Through Michigan Tech Online Learning, the Department of Mechanical Engineering–Engineering Mechanics (ME-EM) provides an online MS in Mechanical Engineering degree program. A 30-credit hour program, the degree provides three options to customize; students choose from a research-based Thesis option, an Independent Study Project Report option, or a Coursework-only option. Multiple courses are delivered online, and additional classes are added with ample student interest (potential classes include “Nanoscale Science and Technology,” “Nonlinear System Analysis & Control,” and “Advanced Engineering Mathematics with Applications”). The extensive ME-EM faculty have a wealth of research and published works between them, and the decades of Michigan Tech mechanical engineering program experience (first offered in the 1920s) is evidenced by the current projects being conducted in the department. Online student resources are provided to mechanical engineering students from the moment they are admitted past graduation, and includes services such as a Multiliteracies Center for current students and Financial Tools and Resources for alumni.

Admissions website

Started as the Michigan Mining School in Houghton, Michigan in 1885, Michigan Technological University (Michigan Tech) was established by the state in order to provide best practices training to mining engineers who oversaw the local copper mines. The first classes were led by four faculty members, and the first student enrollment included 23 students. The school would find a permanent location (the original classroom is now a restaurant and club), and the main campus now encompasses 925 acres. Programs have expanded, and now over 130 academic degree programs are offered through five schools and colleges, and student enrollment has surpassed 7,000. The Carnegie Foundation has declared Michigan Tech promotes higher research activity through its College of Engineering, College of Sciences and Arts, School of Business and Economics, School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science, and School of Technology, and regional accreditation is granted from the Higher Learning Commission.

#31. Villanova University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Villanova University’s Department of Mechanical Engineering (held in high regard ever since it was established in 1908) offers a “modern, relevant and comprehensive” 30-credit hour Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program online through the College of Engineering E-Learning program. The “highly distinguished and dedicated faculty who are nationally recognized leaders in their disciplines” provide coursework in the established areas of thermal sciences, mechanics and materials, and dynamics and controls, as well as in newer fields such as bioengineering and nanotechnology. Additionally, the College of Engineering presents five mechanical engineering graduate certificates via E-Learning for students who do not desire a full master’s degree. The certificates all require four or five courses for completion, and options include: Mechanics and Material, Machinery Dynamics, Modeling and Simulation (with tracks in Dynamics & Systems and Mechanics & Manufacturing), Thermofluid Systems, and Electro-Mechanical Systems.

Admissions website

Named for Saint Thomas of Villanova, Villanova University started out as Augustinian College of Villanova and is located in Villanova, Pennsylvania. The school was established by the Order of Saint Augustine in 1842, making it the oldest Catholic university in the state of Pennsylvania. An all-male school in the beginning (though nuns were allowed to start taking classes in 1918), Villanova became completely coeducational in 1968 and now enrolls nearly 11,000 students, both residentially on the 250-plus acre campus and online. Six schools and colleges provide over 100 academic degree programs, and this private research university, though firmly rooted in the Roman Catholic tradition, “welcomes and respects members of all faiths who seek to nurture a concern for the common good and who share an enthusiasm for the challenge of responsible and productive citizenship in order to build a just and peaceful world.” Regional accreditation comes from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#32. Lehigh University

Online Master of Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Offered through the Office of Distance Learning, Lehigh University’s online Master of Mechanical Engineering degree program is housed within the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics in the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Sciences. The 30-credit hour program is a non-thesis degree (students who want to pursue the MS in Mechanical Engineering degree must get departmental approval and write a thesis) and benefits from a history that began with the first class requirements when Lehigh was founded in 1866 (the School of Mechanical Engineering was established in 1876). Students can pursue the Master’s degree as a gateway to a PhD program, taking five required core courses (such as “Advanced Fluid Mechanics” and “Heat and Mass Transfer”) or opt not to take the required core courses but construct the degree with their chosen coursework. Award-winning faculty provide the entirely online curriculum, and students’ research projects contributed to a blog serve as testaments to the program.

Admissions website

Lehigh University was founded in 1865 in the Lehigh Valley region of Pennsylvania. Asa Packer, the man who established the Lehigh Valley Railroad, provided the funding and land to create an institution of higher education that would foster the “intellectual and moral improvement” of the young men in the area. Located on South Mountain in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, the institution’s first classes were a year later, and 39 students were in attendance when the doors first opened. By the 1970s women were allowed full admittance, and now more than 7,000 students are currently enrolled. The university’s four academic colleges (the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science, the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Business and Economics, and the College of Education) provide nearly 200 academic degree programs, and this private research university is recognized as having higher research activity by the Carnegie Foundation. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education regionally accredits Lehigh.

#33. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Nuclear Engineering (MANE) in the RPI School of Engineering (one of the first schools of engineering, established in 1824) provides a Master of Engineering (M.Eng.) in Mechanical Engineering degree program in a blended online format. The “Education for Working Professionals” program requires 30-credit hours and provides four topical research areas (Mechanics and Materials, Thermal and Fluids Engineering, Design and Manufacturing, and Dynamics and Control). The curriculum provides coursework such as “Advanced Engineering Mathematics,” “Introduction to Finite Elements,” and “Analysis of Manufacturing Processes.” Classes are presented by Rensselaer’s “outstanding and highly-ranked engineering faculty,” and all students complete the degree with a Professional Project.  Student resources that are tailored to the graduate mechanical engineering student are made available from the beginning of the educational journey, and even before admittance  online information sessions and webinars are provided for prospective students to learn more about the program and the blended online delivery.

Admissions website

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) was founded in 1824 in Troy, New York as the Rensselaer School by Stephen Van Rensselaer, and the school attracted students from other states due to its academic rigor and affordable price ($40 per semester). Incorporated by the state of New York in 1826 and renamed the Rensselaer Institute in 1834, the school awarded the very first civil engineering degree in the United States the following year. In 1861 the institute was renamed a final time, and RPI now enrolls over 7,500 students in five schools: the School of Architecture, the School of Engineering, the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, the Lally School of Management & Technology, and the School of Science. More than 145 degree programs are provided by this historic private research institution with higher research activity classification from the Carnegie Foundation. Also a space-grant school, Rensselaer is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#34. Mississippi State University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Mechanical Engineering has a long history at MSU—the institution having begun as an A&M college in 1878 and the College of Engineering being established in 1902. The Mechanical Engineering (ME) Department, the largest academic department at the Bagley College of Engineering at MSU, provides an online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering degree with both a thesis and a non-thesis option. Requiring 31-credit hours for both options, the degree allows students to construct a program of study with advisor guidance. Coursework options are diverse, providing class options such as “Mechanical Metallurgy,” “Energy Systems Design,” “Introduction to Vibrations and Controls,” and “Finite Elements in Mechanical Engineering.” The award-winning faculty provides the same rigorous studies both on-campus and online, and easily accessible resources, services, current student stories and program information assures that the online academic experience is rewarding for online ME graduate students.

Admissions website

Founded as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of the State of Mississippi in 1878, Mississippi State University (MSU) welcomed the first students to class in 1880. Main campus was located in and near Starkville, Mississippi, and main campus is still in this area of Oktibbeha County that remains unincorporated. It is a public land-, space-, and sea-grant institution with higher research activity (as Classified by the Carnegie Foundation), and is the flagship university of the state. Since 1958 the official name has been Mississippi State University for Agriculture and Applied Science, but it is mostly known as simply “Mississippi State University.” Over 21,000 students are enrolled in the main campus alone (there are additional campus locations in Meridian, Biloxi and Vicksburg), making it the largest university in the state per enrollment, and over 175 academic degree programs are provided through twelve colleges and schools. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges provides regional accreditation.

#35. Old Dominion University

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Utilizing a Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) focus, ODU provides “an integrated, information-driven” approach in the fully online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering degree program with an emphasis in Design and Manufacturing. The 30-credit hour program is housed within the Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering in the Frank Batten College of Engineering & Technology (the College was established in 1962, but as part of the history of ODU, engineering classes were offered since 1931 as a collaboration between Virginia Tech and William & Mary). Coursework for this non-thesis program includes the student’s choice of twelve hours of core requirements, with class options such as “Engineering Mathematics,” “Fluid Dynamics and Aerodynamics,” and “Advanced Mechanics of Solids.” The experienced faculty enhance the curriculum with their expertise and research area interests, and students are provided with “a dedicated advisor from the Batten College of Engineering & Technology” as well as online student resources.

Admissions website

Old Dominion University (ODU), founded in Norfolk, Virginia as an extension known as the Norfolk Division of The College of William and Mary in 1930, has been a full, independent institution since 1962 (university status was achieved in 1969). This public doctoral research university is recognized as having higher research activity by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. Six colleges (College of Arts and Letters, Strome College of Business, Darden College of Education, Batten College of Engineering and Technology, College of Health Sciences, and College of Sciences) provide over 200 academic degree programs to 25,000 currently enrolled students. Old Dominion is also a space- and sea-grant institution and is very active in offering online degree programs. The vision of Old Dominion is to utilize the school’s “exceptional strengths and leadership . . .  to provide practical solutions to complex, real world problems,” and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#36. University of Central Florida

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program offered through UCF Online is housed within the Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering in the innovative  College of Engineering and Computer Science (approved as one of the four original academic colleges by the State University System of Florida’s Board of Regents in 1966, two years before UCF opened in 1968). The 30-credit hour degree program provides three tracks from which students can choose: Mechanical Engineering (MSME) – Mechanical Systems, Mechanical Engineering (MSME) – Thermofluids, and an accelerated Bachelor of Science to Master of Science program for undergraduates. All tracks provide a thesis or non-thesis option, and can be completed entirely online, and the experience is enriched by partnerships with major technology -focused organizations, “including NASA, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Siemens and Walt Disney World.” The faculty are innovators in their own right, and online students are fully supported.

Admissions website

In 1962, President Kennedy gave a moving speech on space travel (“We choose to go to the Moon”). This speech was part of the impetus in the creation of the University of Central Florida (UCF), which was founded in 1963 in Orlando, Florida. The name of the school was Florida Technological University until it became UCF in 1978, and originally the academics focused primarily on space and technology. The school was intentionally diverse, admitting coeducational students and students of color from the inception, and almost 2,000 students enrolled the first year. Now, over 66,000 students make UCF the largest school in Florida and the second largest in the nation. More than 200 academic degree programs are provided through the thirteen colleges on the 1,400-plus acre campus, and there are several regional campus locations and many online programs available. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges grants UCF with regional accreditation, and the Carnegie Foundation classifies it as having highest research activity.

#37. University of Idaho

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Provided online through Engineering Outreach, the Master of Engineering (M. Engr.) in Mechanical Engineering degree program at U of I is a 30-credit hour program within the Department of Mechanical Engineering. The ME department is located in the century-and-a-quarter old College of Engineering, and the coursework fulfills the original vision of this prestigious land-grant school—a focus on the mechanical arts. The online class offerings are plentiful (with choices such as “Engineering Acoustics,” “Computational Fluid Dynamics,” and “Finite Element Applications in Engineering,” just to name a few), and the faculty members have a long history of experience and cover many research areas. Student success is important at U of I—the College of Engineering Student Services office provides many resources and support services to engineering students, and a page dedicated to all manner of engineering news relevant to the school is available for all to access.

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The University of Idaho (UI or U of I) was founded in 1889, one year before Idaho joined the union as the 43rd state. A public university and the flagship of the state, UI was located in Moscow, Idaho, and classes began in 1892 for 40 coeducational students. Also the oldest institution of higher education in the state of Idaho, UI is designated as a land- and space-grant university with a higher research activity classification from the Carnegie Foundation. Main campus in Moscow is almost 1,600 acres, and branch campuses are located across the state. UI is organized into ten schools, and nearly 200 academic degree programs are currently offered to the more than 11,000 enrolled students. The mission of UI is to “enhance the scientific, economic, social, legal and cultural assets of our state and to develop solutions for complex problems facing our society,” and regional accreditation comes from the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

#38. University of California, Riverside

Online Master of Sciemce in Engineering with a specialization in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The UCR online MS in Engineering with a specialization in Mechanical Engineering is offered entirely online through the Bourns College of Engineering. This convenient, flexible program is located within the relatively young but highly regarded Department of Mechanical Engineering and can be completed in as few as thirteen months. The faculty members and professors are “thought leaders and industry experts” who care about their students and offer the same rigorous coursework online as they do on-campus. The 36-credit hour curriculum includes sixteen credits of an engineering core and sixteen credits towards the mechanical engineering specialization, with classes such asTechnology Innovation and Strategy for Engineers,” “Plasma-aided Manufacturing and Materials Processing,” and “Design and Analysis of Engineering Experiments,” and four one-credit Capstone courses. The current students and graduates of the program give it high praises, and prospective students can be assured that available student support specialists “are dedicated to helping students successfully navigate their educational journey.”

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The University of California, Riverside (UC Riverside or UCR) was founded in 1954 but traces its roots to the University of California Citrus Experiment Station (CES), which was established in 1907. The Station moved to a larger location, and by the 1940s a push for a college in the area led to UC Riverside. Opening with 127 students, UCR quickly grew, and this public research university (one of the ten campuses in the University of California system), currently enrolls over 23,000 students. The nearly 1,200-acre campus houses three colleges and four schools, which offer over 180 academic degree programs. A land-grant school, diversity is proudly embraced at UC Riverside—the mission is to “transform the lives of the diverse people of California, the nation, and the world.” The Carnegie Foundation designates the school with a highest research activity classification, and regional accreditation comes from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

#39. Kansas State University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Through the Kansas State University Global Campus and the College of Engineering’s Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering (officially established in 1922, but classes in “mechanic arts” were offered as early as the foundation of K-State), students can pursue an online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering degree. Requiring 30-credit hours, the degree program curriculum is made up of classes such as “Indoor Environmental Engineering,” “Thermodynamics of Modern Power Cycles,” and “Finite Element Applications in Mechanical Engineering.” All coursework is available online; the only on-campus requirement is the final oral exam at the end of the program. Ideal for individuals who have an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering (or closely related field), the curriculum is taught by faculty members who have won teaching awards and published many books, chapters, papers, and articles collectively. Online students are fully supported with services and resources—K-State Global Campus has been providing distance education since 1966.

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Though officially established in 1863 as the Kansas State Agricultural College, Kansas State University (Kansas State or K-State) began when the Bluemont Central College was founded in 1858; that school was converted into the land-grant state university. Kansas had entered the union in 1861, and the school located in Manhattan, Kansas benefited from the Morrill Act of 1862. Only the second institution of higher education in the nation that admitted coeducational students without any stipulation, Kansas State had 26 male and 26 female students enrolled in the first year. Renamed Kansas State University of Agriculture and Applied Science in 1959, the school is known as Kansas State University in most settings. One of the 115 universities with the Carnegie Foundation classification of highest research activity, Kansas State is organized into nine colleges and has two branch campuses in Salina and Olathe. Nearly 25,000 students are now enrolled at K-State, and regional accreditation comes from the Higher Learning Commission.

#40. University of Michigan-Dearborn

Online Master of Science in Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The College of Engineering and Computer Science Distance Learning Network at UM-Dearborn provides an online Master of Science in Engineering in Mechanical Engineering (MSE-ME) degree program that “combines engineering practice with analysis.” A 30-credit hour program that can be completed entirely online, the MSE-ME presents two emphasis areas in which students can choose to focus: Mechanical Science or Thermal/Fluid Science. Located in the Department of Mechanical Engineering (and one of the first degree programs offered by the school when it was established in 1959), the degree program is continuously improved upon with up-to-the-minute input from the Mechanical Engineering Advisory Board, which is made up of “industry professionals who provide input . . .  and a perspective on future challenges requiring collaboration.” Coursework such as “Mechanical Behavior of Materials” and “Statistical Thermodynamics” are provided by the impressive faculty, and students can opt to complete the degree with a thesis and independent study.

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Dearborn, a city in Michigan, benefited from being in the larger metropolitan of Detroit when the Ford Motor Company donated six million dollars and 200 acres to the city to finance a public university. An act that was both altruistic and practical, Ford Motor Company was providing funding to create a highly-educated and capable pool of engineers from which they could recruit. The school was founded in 1956, and the University of Michigan–Dearborn (UM–Dearborn) is one of two regional campuses for the flagship University of Michigan, which is located in Ann Arbor. UM-Dearborn opened its doors for the first classes in 1959, and 34 students were enrolled. Only offering degrees in Industrial Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Business Administration at that time, the school has grown to provide over 100 academic degree programs through four colleges. Over 10,000 students are now enrolled, and the Higher Learning Commission provides regional accreditation.

#41. Southern Methodist University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Mechanical Engineering Department at SMU’s Bobby B. Lyle School of Engineering provides a 30-credit hour MS in Mechanical Engineering degree online through the Lyle Distance Education Program. The program is at the forefront of distance education (the Lyle School of Engineering having provided “50 years of proven . . . engineering education-at-a-distance” since first offering it in 1967), and students can opt for a thesis or non-thesis track and from three concentration areas (Design and Dynamic Systems and Controls, Mechanics and Manufacturing, or Thermal and Fluid Sciences). Theexceptionally qualified faculty members are continuously engaged in cutting-edge research projects” and pass their knowledge and the benefits of their experience on to the students. Engineering services are provided to students, and a specific Distance Education Help Desk is a resource for distance students. As an additional benefit to students, the Lyle School Executive Board furnishes guidance to the school and a liaison to industry.

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Chartered in 1911 and affiliated with the United Methodist Church, Southern Methodist University (SMU) welcomed students for the first time in 1915 in the first building constructed on the campus located in Dallas, Texas: Davis Hall. Three campuses now make up the university and cover nearly 625-acres collectively: the main campus in Highland Park/University Park (Dallas), a campus in Taos, New Mexico, and another Texas campus in Plano. Seven academic school comprise SMU and serve almost 12,000 students with more than 260 academic degree programs. Even though the school has a strong tie to the United Methodist church, it is a private research university that is “nonsectarian in its teaching and committed to academic freedom and open inquiry” and has a higher research activity classification from the Carnegie Foundation. The university’s regional accreditation is provided by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#42. Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Only the third private college established in the U.S. dedicated to science and technology, WPI’s online MS in Mechanical Engineering degree has roots in the first classes offered at the school when it opened in 1868 (making WPI one of the first schools in the nation to offer mechanical engineering coursework). The 30-credit hour program is available entirely online through the ABET-accredited Mechanical Engineering department, and students can choose from five specialization areas to customize the degree. The research-intensive faculty provides coursework such as “Applied Numerical Methods In Engineering” and “Fundamentals In Surface Metrology,” and online student support is provided through interactions with Student Support Team members. Also offered entirely online by WPI, the Mechanical Engineering for Technical Leaders (METL) graduate certificate is an eighteen-credit program that provides students with “a combination of the technical skills that create innovation solutions, and the managerial skills that bring these solutions to bear.”

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The rich history of the engineering and technology that Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has produced first began when the school was established in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1865 (classes would begin three years later). The Worcester County Free Institute of Industrial Science, as it was known then, had two key financial founders: John Boynton and Ichabod Washburn. Both men had different ideas about the school, but their vision helped create a private research institution that now houses fourteen academic departments offering over 50 degree programs to the nearly 5,000 currently enrolled students. WPI has the vision “to create, to discover, and to convey knowledge at the frontiers of academic inquiry for the betterment of society” and is classified as having higher research activity by the Carnegie Foundation. Over 225 student organizations are offered by WPI, and regional accreditation is provided by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

#43. University of Houston

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The Department of Mechanical Engineering (ME) in the UH Cullen College of Engineering offers an online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering degree program through Online & Special Programs (OSP). The same 30-credit hour degree program as on-campus, but conveniently offered online and with no time limit to complete the degree, the same innovative faculty members provide the coursework, with classes such as “Functional Engineering Materials and Applications,” “Intelligent Structural Systems,” and “Control System Analysis and Design” presented online. The list of specific engineering online student resources includes services, technological assistance with the online delivery system, a FAQ page, and a sample course for prospective students to view. A young university when viewed through historical lenses, UH’s College of Engineering, though established in 1941, has quickly jumped to national recognition and has nearly 20,000 alumni to speak to the quality of the school.

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The University of Houston began simply as evening classes offered at the local high school in 1927. Known as the Houston Junior College at that time, the institution quickly grew to become University of Houston (UH) in 1934. That first year, almost 700 students were enrolled, and by 1939 the school had moved from the high school and found its permanent location. Becoming a state university in 1963, UH became a member of the University of Houston System in 1977. Organized into fourteen schools and colleges, this public research institution offers over 250 academic degree programs to over 45,000 currently enrolled students. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching has awarded UH the classification of highest research activity, and UH is also the flagship institution of the UH System and the third largest university in the state of Texas. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges provides regional accreditation.

#44. University of Washington

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The UW Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program can be pursued entirely online on a full- or part-time basis. Designed for current mechanical engineer professionals with a strong undergraduate background in mechanical engineering or similar field, the 42-credit hour program can be pursued by others (such as physics majors) if they complete the undergraduate work required of MSME students. Located in the Department of Mechanical Engineering (ME) in the College of Engineering (which was established in 1901), the UW MSME is one of the largest in the nation and offers six concentration options (such as Dynamics & Vibrations or Mechanics, Materials & Manufacturing). In addition to the mechanical engineering resources and student services provided, the ME faculty members have many honors and a wealth of experience and expertise in the field. Prospective students can read the stories of current ME students and alums to visualize the experience of the program.

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One of the goals of establishing the University of Washington was to help the city of Seattle prosper and grow. When it was founded in 1861, Washington was still a territory, and the institution was named the Territorial University of Washington. By 1889 (the year Washington entered the union) the school and the city began to thrive, and the school outgrew its original location and moved to the current main campus in 1895. Sixteen schools and colleges comprise the University of Washington (UW), and the institution of higher education is classified by the Carnegie Foundation as having highest research activity. A public university, UW is also a land-, space-, and sea-grant institution and the flagship of the six public universities in the state. A member of the Association of American Universities, UW enrolls almost 47,000 students currently. UW is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

#45. New Mexico Tech

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: New Mexico Tech’s Department of Mechanical Engineering presents a MS in Mechanical Engineering degree that students can access entirely online through the Center for Graduate Studies via distance education. The program requires 30 credit hours to graduate and provides four specialization areas: Specialization in Explosives Engineering, Specialization in Fluid and Thermal Sciences, Specialization in Mechatronics Systems Engineering, and Specialization in Solid Mechanics. Students participate in twelve-credit hours of their specialization core and complete the degree with electives and either a Thesis or Independent Study course. Although Mechanical Engineering is the newest academic department at NMT, it is the largest in terms of enrollment and enjoys a strong reputation. The faculty are actively involved in cutting-edge research, and since classes are offered in real-time through the Adobe Connect platform, online students are immersed in the class discussion as if they were present in the classroom.

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Established as the New Mexico School of Mines in 1889 by the New Mexico Territorial Legislature, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (known most commonly as New Mexico Tech) is a public university in the Rio Grande valley. Growing out of a desire to boast the economy of one of the mining town Socorro, the first classes began in 1893 for the two instructors and seven students. As the school grew and added more programs (the original classes were in chemistry and metallurgy), the name was change to reflect that growth in 1951. Now New Mexico Tech educates over 2,000 students and offers nearly 50 academic degree programs. Known for engineering, science, and technology, New Mexico Tech houses over a dozen research divisions, such as the Bureau of Geology & Mineral Resources, the Magdalena Ridge Observatory, and the Energetic Materials Research & Testing Center. New Mexico Tech is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission

#46. Clarkson University

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: Through Distance Learning at Clarkson University, students can pursue both a ME degree and MS degree in Mechanical Engineering. Both degrees are 30-credit hours—the ME is a professional degree requiring a final project, and the MS is research-based with a thesis requirement. Located within the Department of Mechanical & Aeronautical Engineering (the largest department at CU) in the Wallace H. Coulter School of Engineering and provided online through the Graduate School, the programs both have a selection of courses from which students can choose in order to customize their degree (some of the courses offered online include “Particle Transport,” “Advanced Modeling & Simulation of Dynamic Systems,” and “Additive Manufacturing”). Technology has been an important component of CU since its founding in 1896, and students are well supported with resources that continue even beyond graduation—such as a Career Center available to online students and alumni.

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Clarkson University was established as the Thomas S. Clarkson Memorial School of Technology in 1896. Located in Potsdam, New York, the school was founded by the family of local businessman Thomas Clarkson, who had died heroically saving the life of one of the workers in his sandstone quarry. Seventeen coeducational students were enrolled the first year, and now over 4,300 students are enrolled in more than 95 academic degree programs in one of four schools (The Clarkson School, the Graduate School, the School of Arts & Sciences, the David D. Reh School of Business, and the Wallace H. Coulter School of Engineering) or three institutes (the Institute for a Sustainable Environment, the Institute for STEM Education, and the Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries). A private research university with moderate research activity (as determined by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching), Clarkson is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

#47. Kennesaw State University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: With a history that predates the university’s founding, the KSU Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology (created as The Technical Institute in 1948 and as established as an academic college of KSU in 2015) provides an entirely online Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME) degree program ideal for working professionals. The 30-credit hour program is offered through the Department of Mechanical Engineering and requires eight core courses such as “Advanced Dynamics and Vibrations” and “Applied Engineering Design.” Two electives are chosen by the student from diverse classes such as “Project Management Processes,” “Introduction to Systems Engineering,” and “Total Quality,” and students have the option to complete a Master’s Project for credit. The curriculum is provided for online programs by “the same exceptional faculty that teach on-campus courses,” and these KSU professors have been recognized nationally for excellence in their online training. A comprehensive collection of Student Support Resources are also available to all online MSME students.

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Kennesaw State University (KSU) was established as Kennesaw Junior College in 1964, and over 1,000 students were in attendance in its first year. Located in Cobb County, Georgia, KSU has two campus locations: Kennesaw and Marietta. Together the campuses are nearly 600 acres, and now more than 35,000 students are enrolled. The public research university is organized into thirteen colleges, and more than 150 academic degree programs are provided. Part of the University System of Georgia, KSU is the third largest institution of higher education in the state. Merging with the Southern Polytechnic State University in 2015, KSU is classified as having moderate research activity by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. A vision of imparting an experience that will empower “the university community to have the vision, ability, and courage to transform the future,” KSU is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#48. Virginia Commonwealth University

Online Master of Science in Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering

Program Details: Virginia Commonwealth University provides an entirely online MS in Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering degree program through Online@VCU. A 30-credit hour program with a mission “to provide graduate students with learning opportunities for acquiring a broad foundation of engineering knowledge including business and manufacturing aspects,” the degree is housed within the Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering in the College of Engineering. Both a thesis and a non-thesis option are available, and the same nine credits of core courses are required for each (“Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering Analysis,” “Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering Continuum Mechanics,” and “Topics in Nuclear Engineering”). The remaining credits are comprised of electives, chosen with adviser guidance, from a variety of subject areas, and in the case of the thesis option, six credits of Directed Research in Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering. The faculty have an impressive collection of media appearances and publications along with their research, and online students have access to resources and services.

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Founded as the Medical College of Virginia (MCV), a medical department of the Hampden-Sydney College, Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) has grown to become a comprehensive public research university. Established in 1838 in Richmond, Virginia the school obtained its own charter in 1844 to become the independent MCV. In 1968, the Medical College of Virginia merged with the Richmond Professional Institute, and now more than 31,000 students are currently enrolled. The VCU main campus encompasses almost 175 acres in downtown Richmond, and there are branch and satellite locations throughout the state and overseas. The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education designates VCU with the highest research activity level, and over 200 academic degree programs are provided through the fourteen schools and colleges of this institution of higher education. Regional accreditation for VCU is provided by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#49. Indiana State University

Online Master of Science in Technology Management with a concentration in Mechanical Engineering Technology

Program Details: The College of Graduate and Professional Studies at Indiana State University provides an online Master of Science in Technology Management (MSTM) degree with a concentration in Mechanical Engineering Technology. A 33-credit hour program that can be completed in two years (but allows students up to seven years) and “provides a strong graduate education by integrating teaching with applied research in an engaging, challenging and supportive learning environment to prepare leaders.” The Technology Management Core includes fifteen-credits of coursework such as “Systems in Manufacturing” and “Economic Analysis for Engineering and Technology,” and the Mechanical Engineering Technology concentration offers nine credits towards “Engineering Design and Management,” “Application of Simulation Modeling and Analysis,” and “Computer Aided Graphics Software.” Electives and either a Major Project or Master’s Thesis culminate the program. This unique degree is offered through the College of Technology and located in the Department of Applied Engineering and Technology Management.

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Established as the Indiana State Normal School by the Indiana General Assembly in 1865, Indiana State University was originally a school to train teachers for the area. Located in Terre Haute, Indiana, the institution of higher education opened its doors in 1870 for the first classes, and 23 students were enrolled. Going through several expansions and name changes, the school became Indiana State University in 1965. Organized into seven colleges, Indiana State is a doctoral research university with a moderate research activity level designation from the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. Providing almost 200 academic degree programs to the more than 13,500 currently enrolled students, Indiana State has a mission to “integrate teaching, research, and creative activity in an engaging, challenging, and supportive learning environment to prepare productive citizens for Indiana and the world.” Regional accreditation has been provided by the Higher Learning Commission since 1915.

#50. Boston University

Online Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

Program Details: The BU Master of Engineering (MEng) in Mechanical Engineering degree program is offered online through the Mechanical Engineering Department in the College of Engineering (which was founded in 1950). A 32-credit hour professional degree ideal for recent graduates, professionals who are at a mid-point in their career, and industry workers who want to expand their engineering and management knowledge. Classes are varied and cover topics like “Probability and Statistics for Mechanical Engineers,” “Atmospheric Flight Mechanics and Control,” and “Dynamics and Control of Mechanical Systems,” and all students culminate the degree by fulfilling a Practicum Requirement (in which students should be prepared to devote more than 50 hours to successfully complete). Seven research areas provide opportunities for students, and the award-winning faculty are available to offer their expertise and guidance. The College of Engineering houses a Graduate Programs Office to provide an orientation for new students, as well as other resources.

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Boston University can claim a rich history of predecessors. The earliest school that contributed to the creation of Boston University was the Newbury Bible Institute, which was founded in 1839. The school was established in Newbury, Vermont by delegates of the United Methodist Church from Boston, and would be given a new charter in 1867 to move to Massachusetts and become the Boston Theological Institute. A newly-established Boston University merged with the institution in 1871 to become closer to the Boston University of today, and by the end of the 19th century all locations of the school came together on the campus on the banks of the Charles River. Now organized into seventeen schools and colleges, Boston University (BU) enrolls over 33,000 students currently, and this private nonsectarian research university is classified with the highest research activity by the Carnegie Foundation. The New England Association of Schools and Colleges regionally accredits BU.

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Michael Templeton
Managing Editor

Kacey Reynolds Schedler
Contributing Editor