Program Overview

Our program is directed towards preparing motivated students to become professionally competent in one of several sub-disciplines of mechanical engineering, including solid mechanics, materials, biomedical, controls, and the fluid/thermal sciences. On admission each student is assigned a faculty advisor who will help outline an individual course of study tailored to fit that person's particular background and interests.


The Reno Area

Reno and Sparks are adjacent cities with a population of over 400,000. If you like mountains, you'll love the beautiful Sierra Nevadas to the west of the University. There are four distinct seasons in this cool, dry climate, where the sun shines 307 days a year. The Reno/Sparks area is far from being a desert (it's technically a high elevation semi-desert). In fact, the Truckee River flows through the heart of the community, and there are more than 70 public parks and playgrounds, featuring trees, gardens, and many recreational opportunities. There's a lot to do in your free time, including sailing, camping, hiking, fishing, and sightseeing. Within an hour's drive of the campus are world famous Lake Tahoe in the high Sierra, and Pyramid Lake, a unique prehistoric desert sea with an eponymous naturally-formed pyramid island. Also, within an hour's drive are a number of nationally known ski areas, including Squaw Valley, site of the 1960 Winter Olympics. Other scenic attractions include Virginia City, setting of one of the West's richest mining bonanzas; and Carson City, the state capital.

Lake Tahoe
A view of Lake Tahoe from the Mt. Rose Highway.


Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Science
Master of Science
Doctor of Philosophy


Program Facts

Program founded in 1906
Program Start Dates: Fall Semester August 16; Spring Semester January 16 (usually)
Expected Time for MS: 18-24 months
Expected time for Ph.D. after MS: 2-4 years
Number of Full Time Faculty: 12
Percentage of Faculty with Highest Degree in Field: 100%
Click here to see latest Mechanical Engineering Department facts (PDF file)


Specialized Research Software

The College and/or the Department has a site license for:

  • ANSYS and FLUENT heat transfer and CFD analysis
  • ANSOFT and NISA FEA structural analysis
  • LabView data acquisition systems
  • Matlab
  • SolidWorks with COSMOS:
    • COSMOS FloWorks
    • COSMOS Motion
    • COSMOS Works

Additionally the department has a number of software packages that are available to the faculty and students in the respective research labs such as Flomerics Computational Analysis, ABAQUS, PATRAN, HYPERMESH, and NASTRAN.


Research Laboratories