2022 Engineering Major Exploration Activities

Every semester, the Penn State College of Engineering hosts various activities to provide pre-major students with more information about their academic options and help them to make informed major-selection decisions. Below are events, recordings, and web resources available during spring 2022.

Additional resources for first-year student engagement can be found here.

College of Engineering Exploration Activities

Aerospace Engineering

What is aerospace engineering? Video »

Pre-recorded Major Night event held in November 2021. 

Learn more about the aerospace program and available student activities. Hear from current aerospace undergraduate students about their experiences.

Available here.

Architectural Engineering

What is architectural engineering? Video »

In-person Major Exploration Event
March 21 | 5:30-7:00 p.m.
Foundry Park Tent
Register here.

During this event, network with AE faculty and undergraduate students, attend a short presentation, and tour AE's facilities in Engineering Units A, B, and C. Food will be served.

For more information, please contact Moses Ling at mdl5@psu.edu.

Biological Engineering 

Hybrid Event: Discover Biological Engineering
February 8 | 6:00-7:00 p.m.
In-person: 312 Agricultural Engineering Building 

Learn about the diverse focus areas of the biological engineering major—natural resources engineering, food & bioprocess engineering, and agricultural engineering, as well as information on the minor in off-road equipment. A panel of upper-class students will provide insight into how they discovered biological engineering, share their experiences inside and outside the classroom, and answer questions. Following the panel discussion, there will be a student-led tour of biological engineering facilities, such as the fabrication lab and wet pilot plant.

Biomedical Engineering

What is biomedical engineering? Video »

Virtual Coffee Chats with Faculty
March 1, March 15, March 22 | 7:00 p.m.
Zoom | Password: 045039

Students will have a chance to chat with BME faculty through scheduled Zoom coffee chats.

Chemical Engineering

What is chemical engineering? Video »

1-on-1 Faculty Ambassador Appointments
Appointments by request throughout the spring semester
To schedule an ambassador appointment, please contact Michael Janik at mjj13@psu.edu.

The Department of Chemical Engineering has designated faculty available to meet with early-career students who would like to learn more about the major and to explore whether it may be a match to their interests and goals. Faculty who are especially eager to participate have provided their bios below and students are welcome to request a specific faculty member they would like to meet with or share if they have no specific preference.

Professor Gina Noh, an assistant professor in chemical engineering at Penn State, has a wide array of previous experiences, including research and research mentorship, industrial internships, and collaborations, being a nuclear reactor operator, and working as a researcher in an early-stage startup. Her research is in synthesizing well-defined heterogeneous catalysts for atom-efficient chemical reactions. She is interested in working with undergraduate researchers.

Professor Mike Janik, an associate department head and leader of the chemical engineering undergraduate program, has been a Penn State faculty member for 16 years. He teaches chemical engineering undergraduates in core and elective courses and provides opportunities for undergraduate research in his group. His research focuses on the area of energy, catalysis, and electrochemistry, and his group uses computational tools to model these processes at the atomistic level.

Professor Bert Chandler arrived at Penn State in 2020 and helps coordinate the University’s efforts in catalysis. He spent the previous 20 years working with undergraduate researchers at Trinity University, a selective private institution in San Antonio, Texas. His teaching and research interests are in the broad areas of energy conversion & storage, greenhouse gas emissions reduction, energy efficiency, and catalysis. 

Assistant Professor Ezra L. Clark was born, raised, and received his undergraduate education in chemical engineering in Louisville, Kentucky. He then obtained his doctoral degree from the University of California, Berkeley before performing post-doctoral research at the Danish Technical University. He is currently in his first year at Penn State and teaches an undergraduate course in mass transfer and separation operation principles. His research group develops electrochemical routes enabling renewable electricity to drive chemical reactions, such as the reduction of carbon dioxide into hydrocarbons.

Associate Professor Chris Arges is in his first year at Penn State after being a professor at Louisiana State University for almost six years. Arges has taught the following courses in chemical engineering: heat and mass transfer, unit operations, process control and dynamics, and electrochemical engineering. The Arges Lab performs research in electrochemical energy conversion, membrane science, and water separations. He frequently collaborates with molecular modeling experts and data science/machine learning experts to augment his research projects. Arges is an advocate for undergraduate research and has mentored almost 30 undergraduate researchers over the past six years.

Civil Engineering

What is civil engineering? Video »

Pre-recorded Open House
View event recording.

Computer Engineering

What is computer engineering? Video »

The CSE Department will hold a Zoom webinar on March 2, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Three students, representing the three CSE majors will discuss their experiences in their majors, including classroom experiences, internship experiences, and job search experiences.

View event recording.

Computer Science

What is computer science? Video »

The CSE department will hold a Zoom webinar on March 2, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Three students, representing the three CSE majors will discuss their experiences in their majors, including classroom experiences, internship experiences, and job search experiences.

View event recording.

Data Sciences

What is data science? Video »

The CSE department will hold a Zoom webinar on March 2, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Three students, representing the three CSE majors will discuss their experiences in their majors, including classroom experiences, internship experiences, and job search experiences.


Electrical Engineering

What is electrical engineering? Video »

In-Person Meeting, Student Chapter of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
February 15 | 7:15 p.m.
62 Willard Building

During an upcoming meeting of the student chapter of IEEE, the world's largest technical professional organization for the advancement of technology, students can find out what it is like to be an electrical engineer. Additional information about this student club (which accepts any and all members) can be found on their website as well as their Instagram (@psu_ieee).

Engineering, B.S. 

Alternative Energy and Power Generation: Virtual Program Research Showcase (Penn State Hazelton) 
February 1 | 6:00 p.m.
View event recording.

Applied Materials: Brief Major Overview with a Lab and Facilities Tour (Penn State DuBois)
Available throughout spring 2022 semester
View video. 

Multidisciplinary Engineering Design: Program Overview and Virtual Tour of MDE Facilities (Penn State Abington, Penn State Brandywine, and Penn State Great Valley School of Graduate Professional Studies)
February 9 | 6:00-7:00 p.m.

Engineering Science

What is engineering science? Video »

In-person Mixer, Opportunities in Engineering Science
March 24 | 5:30 p.m.
Kunkle Lounge
Register here.

The Engineering Science and Mechanics Department (ESM) will host a poster session and mixer with current engineering science students and faculty to offer the opportunity to see some of the areas they can pursue in ESM and talk with current students and faculty about their experiences in the department.

Virtual Coffee Chats

For students unable to attend our live mixer on March 24, there are also several evening opportunities to ask questions about the engineering science program via Zoom.

March 16 | 6:00 p.m.
Zoom | Password: 997129

March 23 | 6:00 p.m.
Zoom | Password: 858973

Industrial Engineering

What is industrial engineering? Video »

In-person Student Panel, Facilities Tour of Leonhard Building
March 29 | 6:15 p.m.
102 Leonhard Building

The panel will present information about the major as well as discuss opportunities in study abroad, undergraduate research, co-ops, internships, among other topics. The panel will be followed by a facilities tour of the Leonhard Building.

Mechanical Engineering

What is mechanical engineering? Video »

Virtual Activity, Exploring Mechanical Engineering (ME)
Available during the entire spring semester

Considering pursuing ME? This activity will introduce you to the profession by looking at whom mechanical engineers are, what they do, and highlighting department resources and academic requirements for the major. To prepare for the Kahoot activity, we recommend that you take some time to review the web pages below before starting:

Nuclear Engineering

What is nuclear engineering? Video »

Hybrid Open House and Student/Faculty Q&A Panel
March 21 | 5:00–6:00 p.m.
In-person: Nuclear Innovation Commons
Register for the virtual event here.

There will be light refreshments provided at the in-person event. After the panel, there will be a nuclear engineering trivia game, available on Kahoot, with fun prizes and incentives for participating.

Surveying Engineering

Penn State Wilkes-Barre 

College of Earth and Mineral Sciences

Energy Engineering

Environmental Systems Engineering

Mining Engineering

Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering

Hybrid Event: Jeopardy Contest
March 31 | 5:00–6:00 p.m.
In-person: 26 Hosler Building (enter through Deike Building)
Register here. 

The John and Willie Leone Family Department of Energy & Mineral Engineering (EME) will host a Jeopardy-style contest covering our four engineering majors: energy engineering, environmental systems engineering, mining engineering, and petroleum and natural gas engineering. Those attending in-person can participate on teams to compete for small prizes. The contest will take about 30 minutes and will be followed by a mixer event to meet current EME students and ask one-on-one questions. Food will be served.

Materials Science and Engineering

In-person Open House
February 23 | 1:30– 2:30 p.m. 
March 22 | 3:00–4:00 p.m.
Register here. 

The open house will include a short presentation by the undergraduate associate head, followed by a panel that includes undergraduate students, graduate students, and faculty members who will share information about being a materials science and engineering student and the career options in this field. Finally, there will be tours of the Steidle Building that highlight some of the undergraduate lab spaces and research efforts in the department.