10 Engineering Schools Changing the World

3. Illinois Institute of Technology (Chicago, IL)

photo by Joe Ravi via Wikimedia Commons

Historically, the Illinois Institute of Technology has created significant innovations that have had a significant impact on technology we all use. From 1952 to 1973, IIT experienced tremendous growth under president and fluid dynamicist John T. Rettaliata, a scientist who contributed significant research evolving modern-day jet engines.

One groundbreaking facility on campus is the IIT Research Institute, which several decades ago was responsible for the creation of magnetic recording, i.e. tapes and cassettes. In today’s world, this high-technology, cutting-edge facility spends millions on new technologies changing medicine and biology.

Innovation extends not just through the faculty, but also to the students. One IIT program, known as The Idea Shop, provides a one-of-a-kind 13,000 square foot facility encouraging collaboration in engineering and related disciplines.

Today, IIT is not just an engineering school, but also a public university with a College of Architecture, College of Law, and even an Institute of Design among other programs.

2. Michigan Technological University (Houghton, MI)

photo by Jcvertin via Wikimedia Commons

Every year, Michigan Tech presents a Research Award to a member of their faculty who has made significant contributions to the world of technology and engineering. 

Recent recipients include Zhanping You, whose unique work on pavement and asphalt have been featured in over 300 scientific journals and conferences worldwide, and Raymond Shaw, a researcher whose work on clouds has made significant advancements in understanding their formation and behavior.

Many schools have made significant strides in innovation and research; Michigan Tech has not only done this, they also have been successful in the commercialization of their research.

To this end, Michigan Tech has an entire Office of Innovation and Commercialization available for faculty and students alike; this department makes scientific advancements at Michigan Tech become successfully sold and utilized outside of academia.

Through this department, students and faculty work on projects sponsored by 130 companies, providing the Michigan Tech community with hands-on learning opportunities fostering business and entrepreneurship.

Housing nearly 300,000 square feet of research space, Michigan Tech’s research expenditure in 2017 was approximately $50m

Widely regarded as having a prestigious Information Technology program, Michigan Tech was recently ranked by Niche.com as a top-10 school for IT. 

1. Texas Tech University (Lubbock, TX)

photo by Elred via Wikimedia Commons

One of the most important universities in the country, Texas Tech spends nearly $200m a year in research, giving it the prestigious R1 designation by the Carnegie Classification. Less than 3% of all schools in the nation are given the rarefied R1 designation.

Texas Tech’s faculty, researchers, and students in engineering and STEM have changed the world in a number of fields; major projects at the university include those in epidemiology & health, space, nanophotonics, pulsed power, grid computing, and much more.

More specifically, Texas Tech’s breakthroughs have had significant impact in our contemporary world. Texas Tech has developed the only human blood substitute, known as HemoTech. Other medical advancements in the past decade from Texas Tech include creating a technology that could potentially treat HIV.

Texas Tech has also made important contributions to NASA. Researchers led by Texas Tech faculty member Daniel Cooke undertook a project funded by NASA for $350m known as the Intelligent Systems Program. This project helped revolutionize the computer science capabilities of NASA.

Alumni of the program have impacted the world in engineering, technology,  and beyond. Prominent alumni include astronaut Rick Husband, at least a half-dozen Texas senators, CEOs of major tech companies, and tens of thousands who have changed the world.

Featured Image by Elred via Wikimedia Commons


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