Mission Statement

To provide an excellent education to our undergraduate and graduate students, to conduct leading-edge research in mechanical engineering, and to serve our professional communities effectively. This mission is to be carried out in accordance with the Guiding Principles of Michigan State University.


Mechanical Engineering (ME) became a formal part of Michigan Agricultural College (MAC) in 1885 prior to the formal establishment of the College of Engineering. Today, the Department has 35 faculty members, 1033 undergraduate students (freshmen through seniors) and 156 graduate students. The Department has a thriving research program with activity in a broad range of core mechanical engineering areas, as well as participation in multidisciplinary research with more than 30 departments in MSU and several multi-campus efforts. Faculty and students are engaged in industrial projects, humanitarian projects, testing, and college sponsored student groups.

Our graduates have been very successful in the job market, following exciting careers in the automotive, aerospace, manufacturing, design and construction, and the paper and plastics industries, as well as medicine, product design, and law.

Undergraduate Program

The ME Department offers a curriculum that combines a foundation in mathematics and science and a core of engineering science and mechanics based courses with the creative processes of engineering design and supports student groups engaged in design-intensive and entrepreneurial extracurricular activities.  The Mechanical Engineering Program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org. The program integrates individual mastery of core subjects in fluid mechanics, thermal engineering, mechanical systems, and solid mechanics with teamwork-based solutions to open-ended design problems, real-world experiences, and experimental techniques. Students learn the skills to develop ideas from concept to product.

A distinguishing component of the undergraduate experience in mechanical engineering at MSU is provided by the design program, a pillar of the undergraduate curriculum that combines core instruction in design with hands-on experiences in design-build-test projects. A sequence of four design intensive course courses culminates in a capstone course, underpinned by industrially-sponsored projects. Industrial sponsorship for the capstone design experience is strong. Over the last ten years, 130 companies, most from within the state, have sponsored 369 capstone design projects. In addition to industrially-motivated projects, students have the option to participate in humanitarian projects.

The Department has a long-established education abroad program in Germany (RWTH Aachen University) and education abroad programs in France (École Catholique d'Arts et Métiers) and the United Kingdom (University of Edinburgh).

Our graduates will:

1. Have evolved into competent and ethical engineers practicing in a diverse range of current and emerging activities

2. Use their mechanical engineering education as a stimulus for personal and professional growth

3. Demonstrate capability, creativity, leadership, and application of knowledge

4. Be critical thinkers, both independently and as members of a team, who identify problems and develop effective solutions

Graduate Program

There are two graduate programs leading to Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees administered by the Department: mechanical engineering and engineering mechanics. Graduate courses and research opportunities are available in fluid mechanics, combustion, heat transfer, thermodynamics, biomechanical engineering, internal combustion engines, turbomachinery, computational fluid dynamics, system dynamics, controls, vibrations, nonlinear dynamics, mechatronics, manufacturing, computational design, computational solid mechanics, mechanics and processing of composite materials, elasticity, plasticity, experimental mechanics, and micromechanics. Nearly all of the mechanical engineering graduate students are involved in research, culminating in a MS or PhD thesis. Most research activity in the Department is organized around one of several research laboratories, which support a variety of experimental, computational, and analytical activities.

The Master of Science degree is also available online.