Colorado State University is introducing a new dual degree the Fall of 2011. The decision was made in large part as a direct response to industry adviser input. Creating a B.S. BME curriculum in this manner addresses a long standing issue regarding a lack of significant technical depth found in a large majority of baccalaureate Biomedical Engineering degrees. The expectation is that the degree will provide graduates with the depth of knowledge industry wants and the needed specialized knowledge required to address creating new products in the health care field. The added technical depth is expected to make these graduates more attractive to graduate programs as well. Here are a few quotes from the program adviser comment and director e-mail communication.
“Our industry advisers agree with you – they said they wanted the depth of a traditional engineering degree AND the breadth of BME. Typically, the problem with a “standalone” general degree is that it doesn’t have the depth they wanted. They felt that, generally, it was more effective to teach the biomedical side of things to a traditionally-trained engineer than to hire a broadly-trained BME who didn’t have enough depth.
Either way, though, the ramp-up time for a freshly minted bachelors’ degree grad was significant. So, with the dual degree, we are predicting that ramp-up time will decrease, the students will be better prepared, and, in fact, it should open some more doors to their employability (or future grad school).”
Brett Beal, BME program Adviser, Colorado State University
“We believe the dual-degree approach is a good way
to accomplish that while also leveraging the existing resources in our
traditional chemical, electrical, and mechanical engineering departments. Another primary motivation for going the dual-degree route was that our external advisory board strongly recommended it. ”
Kevin Lear, PhD, Director of the Undergraduate Biomedical Engineering Program
The Colorado State University Biomedical Engineering Program currently has 50 graduate students enrolled. The expectations are that about 50 freshman will enter the dual-degree bachelor’s program Fall ’11.