Jun 23, 2024  
2022-2023 General Catalog 
    
2022-2023 General Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Civil and Environmental Engineering


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Professors Polito (chair), P. Weiss; Associate Professors Aljobeh, Raich; Assistant Professors Grossman, Heffron; Visiting Assistant Professor Jawdhari.

Mission

The mission of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering is to provide the highest quality of technical education, which is grounded in the arts and sciences by faculty dedicated to exceptional teaching and extraordinary care for individual students. The department will strive to develop graduates who will be effective members of engineering teams, managers of engineering projects, and serve as leaders in the civil engineering discipline and within the broader community of church and society.

Civil Engineering

Program Educational Objectives

The Program Educational Objectives help to direct and measure the success of the civil engineering program in accomplishing its mission. They are broad statements that describe what graduates are expected to attain within a few years of graduation and are based on the needs of the program’s constituencies. The Civil Engineering Program Education Objectives state that within five to ten years of graduation, civil engineering alumni will have:

  1. Attained a position within the civil engineering community through which they are able to make a positive contribution to the engineering profession and society as a whole.
  2. Participated in continuing education activities, such as courses taken for advanced degrees, seminars, workshops, and conferences, demonstrating their commitment to lifelong learning; and
  3. Advanced in their profession. Advancement may be demonstrated through achievements such as promotions and licensure.

Program Overview

“Civil engineering is the profession in which a knowledge of the mathematical and physical sciences gained by study, experience, and practice is applied with judgment to develop ways to utilize, economically, the materials and forces of nature for the progressive wellbeing of mankind in creating, improving, and protecting the environment, in providing facilities for community living, industry, transportation, and in providing structures for the use of mankind.”
–American Society of Civil Engineers

The Civil Engineering Program is designed to prepare the graduate to enter the practice of engineering or to pursue graduate study. The program is broad in scope requiring students to complete course work in five major branches of civil engineering (i.e., environmental, geotechnical, structural, transportation, and water resources engineering). Additional depth in one or several branches can be obtained through appropriate electives. The program emphasizes the importance of effective communication (e.g., written and oral); the ability to work in teams; the importance of ethical and professional responsibility; the need to be lifelong learners; and the need to hold paramount the safety, health, and welfare of the public.

Design is an important component of the Civil Engineering Program. This includes distinguishing between analysis and design, exposing students to various design methodologies, and requiring students to develop and evaluate (i.e., using economic, social, safety, and engineering criteria) alternative solutions to realistic engineering problems. The design experience (i.e., individually and in teams) is spread throughout the program and is incorporated into both classroom and laboratory exercises. In the sophomore year, students are introduced to fundamental aspects of the design process in the mechanics of materials and their introductory courses in structural and transportation engineering. In the junior year, additional aspects of the design process and the use of standards, specifications, and building codes are discussed in courses in environmental engineering, water resources engineering, soil and foundation engineering, structural engineering, and transportation engineering. In the senior year, students apply their design skills in their civil engineering electives and capstone design experience. The capstone courses include a major, comprehensive design project in which students work in teams to bring together their accumulated knowledge of civil engineering to solve engineering problems with realistic constraints.

Laboratory work is designed to develop written communication skills, ability to analyze and interpret experimental data, self-confidence, and to aid in the interpretation and application of classroom theory. The majority of introductory courses in the five branches of civil engineering require a laboratory component. The civil engineering program has modern, well-equipped laboratories in materials engineering, fluid mechanics, soil mechanics, and environmental engineering.

Environmental Engineering

Program Educational Objectives

The Program Educational Objectives help to direct and measure the success of the civil engineering program in accomplishing its mission. They are broad statements that describe what graduates are expected to attain within a few years of graduation and are based on the needs of the program’s constituencies. The Environmental Engineering Program Education Objectives state that within five to ten years of graduation, environmental engineering alumni will have:

  1. Attained a position within the civil and environmental engineering community through which they are able to make a positive contribution to the engineering profession and society as a whole.
  2. Participated in continuing education activities, such as courses taken for advanced degrees, seminars, workshops, and conferences, demonstrating their commitment to lifelong learning; and
  3. Advanced in their profession. Advancement may be demonstrated through achievements such as promotions and licensure.

Program Overview

Environmental engineers protect and improve the quality of life of people and society by applying their technical expertise to find sustainable solutions to global problems. In this role, environmental engineers are stewards of our natural resources and designers of our built environment. Population growth and the rising standard of living for societies worldwide result in additional environmental challenges. The global population has grown from 1 billion in 1800 to 7 billion in 2011 with an expected population reaching almost 10 billion by 2050. With this growth comes the increasing challenge of providing clean air and water to people worldwide. In addition, the rising standard of living results in increased consumption and higher energy and water needs. Environmental engineers working alongside other environmental professionals will be at the forefront of efforts to ensure adequate living conditions for everyone. While environmental engineers in the previous century focused mainly on waste water treatment, today their focus has expanded to develop solutions to all types of environmental problems surrounding the air, water and soil. They also investigate such diverse topics as the effects of climate change and the development of green infrastructure.

The environmental engineering program is interdisciplinary in nature with a strong link between the natural sciences and engineering. Courses are sequenced to build upon a firm foundation in mathematics, basic sciences, and engineering sciences. Courses progressively involve students in engineering design activities, and the courses culminate in a major interdisciplinary, capstone design experience during the final year of study. The program will be housed in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE). The Environmental Engineering (ENE) program shares a common first year with other CoE programs and a common second year with the civil engineering program. The ENE program offers a core that provides a broad foundation in environmental engineering while also providing elective concentrations in air, water or soil. Graduates of the Environmental Engineering Program at Valparaiso University are qualified to enter industry as practicing engineers or to pursue advanced degrees.

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