Engineering for Good
Assistant Dean Jeremy Kasdin speaks with the San Francisco Foghorn about the plans and vision for USF's new engineering program.
The University of San Francisco is proud to announce the launch of its Engineering program, planned for Fall 2020*. Designed with our sights set firmly on the future, the school is committed to developing engineers who are nimble, responsive, and diverse, with the ability to meet the rapidly changing needs of the 21st century using humane and innovative solutions. To that end, we have identified four differentiators that will set our graduates on professional trajectories that will test the frontiers of engineering, and a learning model designed to maximize their education’s practical applications.
With this program we recognize that in the 21st century, technology touches every aspect of life, and a complete liberal arts education must include engineering. The new engineering courses at USF will provide a comprehensive technical education that is rooted in the Jesuit values of social justice, ethics, and service."
Jeremy Kasdin, Assistant Dean of Engineering
Simply put, we want to change the face of engineering. As one of the nation’s most ethnically diverse student bodies, with a student population that is two-thirds women, USF has a unique opportunity to revolutionize the demographics of the field. We plan to commit full support to admitting and maintaining as diverse a student body as possible, with programs including peer mentoring, career counseling, and scholarships to bolster that support. We are committed to the fact that the best solutions cannot be created without diverse perspectives coming together.
Informing every step of our approach to engineering will be USF’s inherent emphasis on Jesuit education. The Ignatian tradition produces students, graduates, and professionals who possess a unique blend of technical prowess, intellectual curiosity, a commitment to social justice, and the ability to integrate knowledge across disciplines. Our goal is to create engineers who can think broadly and creatively while drawing on a variety of skillsets and strong ethics to solve global problems.
We plan to invert traditional engineering education. Instead of beginning our future engineers’ education with book lessons to be applied in practice years down the road, we’ll begin by engaging students with real-world problems with community and professional partners that require teamwork and communication. From there we’ll explore the knowledge and training that will be required to create solutions. USF engineers will have experience solving actual issues using a multidisciplinary approach from their first day in our classrooms, beginning as apprentices on projects as freshman and graduating from their senior year as team leaders.
It’s our goal to take full advantage of existing in one of the most innovative cities on Earth, at the heart of the tech and sustainable energy revolution. We’ll intentionally and thoughtfully engage with this ecosystem through internships, projects, guest lecturers, and sponsorships to provide our graduates with a clear path to a 21st-century career.
*Pending WSCUC approval.
Jeremy Kasdin, Assistant Dean Hana Böttger, Program Director