Written by: Emilee Harvey, Staff Writer
Starting in the fall of 2018, Bryan College will offer an engineering program for students. The program has been a work in progress for the past three years. The mission statement for the program is:
“Engineers fulfill God’s call to serve others and to manage the environment. They improve living conditions around the globe through the design, construction and use of machines as well as the design, construction, and operation of water supply and waste treatment systems, roads and bridges. Bryan’s Engineering program will equip our graduates to impact the world on mission for Christ.”
There are eight students so far here at Bryan who will be transferring into the program next year. Students looking to come into this program must have an affinity for mechanics.
The bachelor degree in engineering or B.C.E. has four focus options: mechanical engineering and civil engineering. As well as statistics and organic science for engineers.
Currently, there is only one professor that will teach, so there will only be one class offered once per semester. In the fall of 2019, Bryan will bring in two more professors and another in the fall of 2020. Students can sign up for the program now.
Lyle Smith, Ph.D., math chair, said, “We have passed all three of the major hurdles. I am very optimistic about the future in four years.” Smith explained that the first major hurdle was the difficulty of hiring a lead engineer to be the department of chair. The second was to secure the $2.1 million in funding for the renovations and equipment. Finally, the third hurdle was submitting the application to Bryan’s accreditation agency, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
Smith explained, “It’s a very large document that typically takes a year to complete. God’s timing brought us our lead engineer in mid-July, so we had to work very hard to complete it by mid-September, in only two months.”
The amount of space needed for the engineering program on campus is 14,500 square feet. They are planning on using the unused section of the third floor in Mercer for labs and classrooms and even renovating the practice gym to create another portion of the lab.
The demand for engineers is growing. Reader Digest noted in the next 10 years, the demand for mechanical engineers will grow by 7.9 percent and the demand for civil engineers will grow by 18.9 percent. Students who want to pursue this career can go into the world after college without fear of finding a job. Students will be able to work with community manufacturers like Lazy Boy, TVA and others by 2018.
Bryan College is excited about bringing the engineering program into play next year. As mentioned above, space is limited for next year so students need to apply now if they want to pursue this career starting fall of 2018.