Mechanical & Nuclear Engineering

History and Quick Facts

History of the department

The Department of Mechanical Engineering enrolled its first class of undergraduate students in the fall of 1996 and moved into what is now Engineering West Hall in 1998. Two years later, in May 2000, M.S. and Ph.D. graduate degree programs in engineering were established and the first graduate students joined the department.

VCU responded to the industry demand for qualified nuclear professionals in Virginia by establishing the VCU nuclear engineering program. In 2007, the department initiated a new M.S. degree program in mechanical and nuclear engineering and in 2009 began offering an undergraduate major concentration in nuclear engineering. Simultaneously, a new nuclear engineering track was developed for those seeking a Ph.D. in Engineering.

The mechanical engineering department relocated to Engineering East Hall in January 2008 and in the fall of 2010 officially changed its name to the Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering.

The Department Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering is the largest in the VCU School of Engineering, currently enrolling more than 580 undergraduate students and more than 70 M.S. and Ph.D. students. The department has 23 full-time faculty members who teach and perform research in cutting-edge areas such as smart materials, drug delivery systems, nanoscale materials, biomedical devices, robotics, energy conversion systems, nuclear engineering, surface science and air filtration.

Quick Facts

Degrees offered

B.S. in Mechanical Engineering (Optional nuclear engineering major concentration)

M.S. in Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering

Ph.D. in Engineering with Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering track

Undergraduate enrollment
Graduate enrollment (2015-16) 76
Faculty (2013-14) 24
Research expenditures (2010-11) $1.3 million