Pre-Engineering Major


Bluffton to offer new pre-engineering major

Bluffton University is now offering a pre-engineering major for students to explore and prepare for an engineering career in a liberal arts environment. Pre-engineering majors at Bluffton will take a blend of mathematics and physics courses along with some new classes designed specifically for pre-engineering majors. Requirements of the major also allow students to earn a second major or pursue additional coursework.

“Bluffton’s program covers all of the foundational courses in mathematics and science that students will need to pursue engineering further,” said Dr. Luke Myers, assistant professor of physics. “Previously, Bluffton students who were interested in engineering were encouraged to major in math or physics. We’ve had success getting students accepted into engineering programs in this manner. However, the pre-engineering major streamlines the process. It’s a good path forward for future students.”

Along with the existing physics and math courses, two new courses developed specifically for the pre-engineering major will prepare students for engineering study. An engineering seminar will expose students to the various career fields in engineering. Classes will feature guest speakers who work in the field and class trips to engineering firms and schools. An engineering statics course will be a gateway course that extends the knowledge of basic physics to solve statics problems. This course will be particularly well-suited for students interested in mechanical and civil engineering.

Bluffton has identified three sets of students who will benefit from the pre-engineering major:

  • Students who want to explore the fields of engineering and strengthen the math and science skillsets that they may not have been exposed to in high school
  • Students who want to double major in the sciences to have a broader academic profile to prepare them for graduate school
  • Student-athletes who want to prepare for the engineering profession while still being a college athlete

“There are a lot of student-athletes who want to take an engineering track of study while continuing their athletic ambitions,” said Erin Ostling Burkholder. “However, there are only about 50 Division III schools across the country that offer an accredited engineering program. Our program opens an avenue to pursue DIII sports while preparing for their future careers.”

Through Bluffton’s program, students will be prepared to either transfer to an accredited baccalaureate engineering program after two to three years of study or graduate with a four year bachelor of arts degree from Bluffton and enroll in either an accredited bachelor’s or master’s engineering program.

Learn more about Bluffton's new pre-engineering program.