Environmental Engineering

Major: Environmental Engineering
Degree Awarded: Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering (BSENE)
Calendar Type: Quarter
Total Credit Hours: 190.5
Co-op Options: Three Co-op (Five years); One Co-op (Four years)
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 14.1401
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code:
17-2081

About the Program

Environmental engineering is concerned with the design of systems, policies and processes to protect human, animal, and plant populations from the effects of adverse environmental factors, including toxic chemicals and wastes, pathogenic bacteria, and global warming, and to design systems that enable a more sustainable society.

Environmental engineers design systems, processes and policies to minimize the effect of human activities on the physical and living environment so that we can all live more healthy and sustainable lives. Environmental engineers work to meet human needs for resources in ways to minimize impact on the ecosystem and adverse effects on health.  This field builds on other branches of engineering, especially civil, chemical, and mechanical engineering. It also builds on information from many of the sciences, such as chemistry, physics, hydrology, geology, atmospheric science, and several specializations of biology (ecology, microbiology, and biochemistry). Students who elect to study environmental engineering will become familiar with many of these areas because maintaining and improving the environment requires that problems be evaluated and solutions found using a multidisciplinary approach.

Mission

The mission of the undergraduate environmental engineering program at Drexel University is to graduate outstanding engineers who can identify, evaluate and solve complex environmental problems, and who desire to continue their education on a lifelong basis.

Program Educational Objectives

Environmental engineering graduates will become professionals who analyze, design, construct, manage or operate facilities or systems to protect or enhance the environment of people and other living things, or advance knowledge of the field.

Student Outcomes

The department’s student outcomes reflect the skills and abilities that the curriculum is designed to provide to students by the time they graduate. These are:   

a)  an ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering;

b)  an ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data;

c)  an ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability;

d)  an ability to function on multidisciplinary teams;

e)  an ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems;

f)  an understanding of professional and ethical responsibility;

g)  an ability to communicate effectively;

h)  the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context;

i)  a recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in life-long learning;

j)  a knowledge of contemporary issues;

k)an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for environmental engineering practice.

Additional Information

The Environmental Engineering program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, www.abet.org.

For more information about this major, visit the Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering Department and the BS in Environmental Engineering page.

Degree Requirements

General Education/Liberal Studies Requirements
CIVC 101Introduction to Civic Engagement1.0
ENGL 101Composition and Rhetoric I: Inquiry and Exploratory Research3.0
ENGL 102Composition and Rhetoric II: Advanced Research and Evidence-Based Writing3.0
ENGL 103Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres3.0
PHIL 315Engineering Ethics3.0
UNIV E101The Drexel Experience1.0
General Education Requirements *15.0
Engineering Core Courses
BIO 141Essential Biology4.5
CAEE 361Statistical Analysis of Engineering Systems3.0
CHEM 101General Chemistry I3.5
CHEM 102General Chemistry II4.5
ENGR 111Introduction to Engineering Design & Data Analysis3.0
ENGR 113First-Year Engineering Design3.0
ENGR 131Introductory Programming for Engineers3.0
or ENGR 132 Programming for Engineers
ENGR 210Introduction to Thermodynamics3.0
ENGR 220Fundamentals of Materials4.0
ENGR 231Linear Engineering Systems3.0
ENGR 232Dynamic Engineering Systems3.0
MATH 121Calculus I4.0
MATH 122Calculus II4.0
MATH 200Multivariate Calculus4.0
PHYS 101Fundamentals of Physics I4.0
PHYS 102Fundamentals of Physics II4.0
PHYS 201Fundamentals of Physics III4.0
Environmental Engineering Requirements
BIO 221Microbiology3.0
CAEE 202Introduction to Civil, Architectural & Environmental Engineering3.0
CAEE 203System Balances and Design in CAEE 3.0
CAEE 212Geologic Principles for Infrastructure & Environmental Engineering 4.0
CHE 211Material and Energy Balances I4.0
CHEM 230Quantitative Analysis4.0
CHEM 231 [WI] Quantitative Analysis Laboratory2.0
CHEM 241Organic Chemistry I4.0
CHEM 242Organic Chemistry II4.0
CIVE 240 [WI] Engineering Economic Analysis3.0
CIVE 320Introduction to Fluid Flow3.0
CIVE 330Hydraulics4.0
CIVE 430Hydrology3.0
CIVE 431Hydrology-Ground Water3.0
ENVE 300Introduction to Environmental Engineering3.0
ENVE 302Environmental Transport and Kinetics3.0
ENVE 410Solid and Hazardous Waste3.0
ENVE 421Water and Waste Treatment II3.0
ENVE 422Water and Waste Treatment Design3.0
ENVE 435Groundwater Remediation3.0
ENVE 460Fundamentals of Air Pollution Control3.0
or ENVE 465 Indoor Air Quality
ENVE 485Professional Environmental Engineering Practice1.0
ENVE 486Environmental Engineering Processes Laboratory I2.0
ENVE 487Environmental Engineering Processes Laboratory II2.0
ENVE 491 [WI] Senior Project Design I3.0
ENVE 492 [WI] Senior Design Project II3.0
ENVE 493 [WI] Senior Design Project III3.0
ENVS 230General Ecology3.0
ENVS 401Chemistry of the Environment3.0
Technical Electives12.0
Total Credits190.5

Writing-Intensive Course Requirements

In order to graduate, all students must pass three writing-intensive courses after their freshman year. Two writing-intensive courses must be in a student's major. The third can be in any discipline. Students are advised to take one writing-intensive class each year, beginning with the sophomore year, and to avoid “clustering” these courses near the end of their matriculation. Transfer students need to meet with an academic advisor to review the number of writing-intensive courses required to graduate.

A "WI" next to a course in this catalog may indicate that this course can fulfill a writing-intensive requirement. For the most up-to-date list of writing-intensive courses being offered, students should check the Writing Intensive Course List at the University Writing Program. Students scheduling their courses can also conduct a search for courses with the attribute "WI" to bring up a list of all writing-intensive courses available that term.

Sample Plan of Study 

5 YR UG Co-op Concentration

Term 1Credits
CHEM 101General Chemistry I3.5
COOP 101Career Management and Professional Development0.0
ENGL 101Composition and Rhetoric I: Inquiry and Exploratory Research3.0
ENGR 111Introduction to Engineering Design & Data Analysis3.0
MATH 121Calculus I4.0
UNIV E101The Drexel Experience1.0
 Term Credits14.5
Term 2
CHEM 102General Chemistry II4.5
CIVC 101Introduction to Civic Engagement1.0
ENGR 131
or 132
Introductory Programming for Engineers
Programming for Engineers
3.0
MATH 122Calculus II4.0
PHYS 101Fundamentals of Physics I4.0
 Term Credits16.5
Term 3
BIO 141Essential Biology4.5
ENGL 102Composition and Rhetoric II: Advanced Research and Evidence-Based Writing3.0
ENGR 113First-Year Engineering Design3.0
MATH 200Multivariate Calculus4.0
PHYS 102Fundamentals of Physics II4.0
 Term Credits18.5
Term 4
CAEE 202Introduction to Civil, Architectural & Environmental Engineering3.0
ENGL 103
or CIVE 240 [WI]
Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres
Engineering Economic Analysis
3.0
ENGR 220Fundamentals of Materials4.0
ENGR 231Linear Engineering Systems3.0
PHYS 201Fundamentals of Physics III4.0
 Term Credits17.0
Term 5
CAEE 203System Balances and Design in CAEE 3.0
ENGL 103
or CIVE 240 [WI]
Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres
Engineering Economic Analysis
3.0
ENGR 210Introduction to Thermodynamics3.0
ENGR 232Dynamic Engineering Systems3.0
ENVS 230General Ecology3.0
 Term Credits15.0
Term 6
CAEE 212Geologic Principles for Infrastructure & Environmental Engineering 4.0
CHE 211Material and Energy Balances I4.0
CHEM 230Quantitative Analysis4.0
CIVE 320Introduction to Fluid Flow3.0
ENVE 300Introduction to Environmental Engineering3.0
 Term Credits18.0
Term 7
CHEM 231 [WI] Quantitative Analysis Laboratory2.0
CIVE 330Hydraulics4.0
ENVE 302Environmental Transport and Kinetics3.0
PHIL 315Engineering Ethics3.0
General Education elective*3.0
 Term Credits15.0
Term 8
CAEE 361Statistical Analysis of Engineering Systems3.0
CHEM 241Organic Chemistry I4.0
CIVE 430Hydrology3.0
ENVS 401Chemistry of the Environment3.0
General Education elective*3.0
 Term Credits16.0
Term 9
BIO 221Microbiology3.0
CHEM 242Organic Chemistry II4.0
Technical elective 3.0
General Education elective*6.0
 Term Credits16.0
Term 10
ENVE 485Professional Environmental Engineering Practice1.0
ENVE 491 [WI] Senior Project Design I3.0
ENVE 465
or 460
Indoor Air Quality
Fundamentals of Air Pollution Control
3.0
Technical elective 3.0
Technical Elective3.0
 Term Credits13.0
Term 11
CIVE 431Hydrology-Ground Water3.0
ENVE 410Solid and Hazardous Waste3.0
ENVE 421Water and Waste Treatment II3.0
ENVE 486Environmental Engineering Processes Laboratory I2.0
ENVE 492 [WI] Senior Design Project II3.0
Technical elective 3.0
 Term Credits17.0
Term 12
ENVE 422Water and Waste Treatment Design3.0
ENVE 435Groundwater Remediation3.0
ENVE 487Environmental Engineering Processes Laboratory II2.0
ENVE 493 [WI] Senior Design Project III3.0
General Education elective*3.0
 Term Credits14.0
Total Credit: 190.5

Co-op/Career Opportunities

Environmental Engineers pursue careers with many different industries, such as chemical, pharmaceutical and manufacturing, in groundwater and hazardous waste remediation, in water or wastewater treatment, in air pollution abatement and control, and in mining. Some also join environmental consulting firms which serve several engineering areas. In addition, some students go to graduate school. The breadth of an environmental engineering education prepares the student to follow many career paths.

Co-op Experiences

Past co-op employers of Environmental Engineering majors have included:

  • Exelon, Philadelphia, PA
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Philadelphia, PA
  • Philadelphia Water Department, Philadelphia, PA
  • Sun Co., Philadelphia, PA
  • Aqua America, Bryn Mawr, PA
  • Fairmount Park Commission, Philadelphia, PA
  • Weston Solutions, West Chester, PA
  • CDM Consultants, Philadelphia PA and other offices

Dual/Accelerated Degree

The Accelerated Program of the College of Engineering provides opportunities for highly talented and strongly motivated students to progress toward their educational goals essentially at their own pace. Through advanced placement, credit by examination, flexibility of scheduling, and independent study, the program makes it possible to complete the undergraduate curriculum and initiate graduate study in less than the five years required by the standard curriculum.

Bachelor’s/Master’s Dual Degree Program

Drexel offers a combined BS/MS degree program for our top engineering students who want to obtain both degrees in the same time period as most students obtain a Bachelors degree.

For more information on this program visit the Department's BS/MS Dual Degree Program page.

Facilities

The Department is well equipped with state-of-the-art facilities:

  • The department computer labs are in operation: a computer-assisted design (CAD) and computerized instructional lab; and a graduate-level lab (advanced undergraduates can become involved in graduate-level work)
  • External labs are used for surveying, building diagnostics, and surface and ground-water measurements
  • Molecular microbiology laboratory to conduct PCR and qPCR analyses, as well as classical measurements
  • Analytical equipment for chemical contaminants
  • Instrumentation for characterization of indoor and outdoor atmospheric aerosols

Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering Faculty

Abieyuwa Aghayere, PhD (University of Alberta). Professor. Structural design - concrete, steel and wood; structural failure analysis; retrofitting of existing structures; new structural systems and materials; engineering education.
A. Emin Aktan, PhD (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) John Roebling Professor of Infrastructure Studies. Professor. Structural engineering; health monitoring of large infrastructure systems; infrastructure evaluation; intelligent systems.
Ivan Bartoli, PhD (University of California, San Diego). Associate Professor. Non-destructive evaluation and structural health monitoring; dynamic identification, stress wave propagation modeling.
Robert Brehm, PhD (Drexel University). Associate Teaching Professor. International infrastructure delivery; response to natural catastrophes; risk assessment and mitigation strategies; project management techniques.
S.C. Jonathan Cheng, PhD (West Virginia University). Associate Professor. Soil mechanics; geosynthetics; probabilistic design; landfill containments; engineering education.
Peter DeCarlo, PhD (University of Colorado) Graduate Studies Advisor.. Associate Professor. Outdoor air quality, particulate matter size and composition instrumentation and measurements, source apportionment of ambient particulate matter, climate impacts of particulate matter.
Eugenia Ellis, RA, PhD (Virginia Polytechnic State University). Associate Professor. Extended-care facilities design, research on spatial visualization, perception and imagination.
Patricia Gallagher, PhD (Virginia Polytechnic Institute). Associate Professor. Soil mechanics; geoenvironmental; ground improvement; sustainability.
Patrick Gurian, PhD (Carnegie-Mellon University). Associate Professor. Risk analysis of environmental and infrastructure systems; novel adsorbent materials; environmental standard setting; Bayesian statistical modeling; community outreach and environmental health.
Charles N. Haas, PhD (University of Illinois-Urbana) L. D. Betz Professor and Department Head, Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering. Professor. Control of human exposures to and risk assessment of pathogenic organisms; water and waste treatment; homeland security.
Ahmad Hamid, PhD (McMaster University). Professor. Engineered masonry; seismic behavior, design and retrofit of masonry structures; development of new materials and building systems.
Y. Grace Hsuan, PhD (Imperial College). Professor. Director, Center for Family Intervention Science, a multidisciplinary research program focused on developing and testing family centered care models across the life span and in a variety of health care settings. Developer of Attachment Based Family Therapy (ABFT) focused on youth with depression, suicide trauma, and youth in the LGBTQ community. Behavioral health integration into primary care
Joseph B. Hughes, PhD (University of Iowa) Dean of the College of Engineering and Distinguished Professor. Biological processes and applications of nanotechnology in environmental systems.
L. James Lo, PhD (University of Texas at Austin). Assistant Professor. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and airflow simulation; Indoor Environmental Quality; Building control integration with building information management systems.
Roger Marino, PhD (Drexel University). Associate Teaching Professor. Fluid mechanics; water resources; engineering education; land development.
Joseph P. Martin, PhD (Colorado State University). Professor. Geotechnical and geoenvironmental engineering; hydrology; transportation; waste management.
James E. Mitchell, MArch (University of Pennsylvania) Associate Dean for Undergraduate Affairs. Professor. Architectural engineering design; building systems; engineering education.
Franco Montalto, PhD (Cornell University). Associate Professor. Effects of built infrastructure on societal water needs, ecohydrologic patterns and processes, ecological restoration, green design, water interventions.
Michael Ryan, PhD (Drexel University). Assistant Teaching Professor. Microbial Source Tracking (MST); Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment (QMRA); Dynamic Engineering Systems Modeling; Molecular Microbial Biology; Environmental Statistics; Engineering Economics; Microbiology
Christopher Sales, PhD (University of California, Berkeley). Assistant Professor. Environmental microbiology and biotechnology; biodegradation of environmental contaminants; microbial processes for energy and resource recovery from waste.
Yared Shifferaw, PhD (Johns Hopkins University). Assistant Professor. Computational and experimental mechanics; structural stability; optimization; health monitoring and hazard mitigation; sustainable structures; emerging materials; thin-walled structures and metallic structures.
Kurt Sjoblom, PhD (Massachusetts Institute of Technology). Assistant Teaching Professor. Laboratory testing of geomaterials, geotechnical engineering, foundation engineering.
Sabrina Spatari, PhD (University of Toronto). Associate Professor. Research in industrial ecology; development and application of life cycle assessment (LCA) and material flow analysis (MFA) methods for guiding engineering and policy decisions; specific interest in biomass and bioenergy, biofuels, and urban infrastructure.
Robert Swan Associate Teaching Professor. Geotechnical and Geosynthetic Engineering; soil/geosynthetic interaction and performance; laboratory and field geotechnical/geosynthetic testing.
Michael Waring, PhD (University of Texas-Austin) Associate Department Head for Undergraduate Programs; Director of Architectural Engineering Program. Associate Professor. Indoor air quality and building sustainability; indoor particulate matter fate and transport; indoor chemistry and particle formation; secondary impacts of control technologies and strategies.
Jin Wen, PhD (University of Iowa). Professor. Architectural engineering; Building Energy Efficiency; Intelligent Building; Net-zero Building; and Indoor Air Quality.
Aspasia Zerva, PhD (University of Illinois). Professor. Earthquake engineering; mechanics; seismology; structural reliability; system identification; advanced computational computational methods in structural analysis.

Emeritus Faculty

Harry G. Harris, PhD (Cornell University). Professor Emeritus. Structural models; dynamics of structures, plates and shells; industrialized building construction.
Joseph V. Mullin, PhD (Pennsylvania State University) Associate Department Head. Professor Emeritus. Structural engineering; failure analysis; experimental stress analysis; construction materials; marine structures.
Richard Weggel, PhD (University of Illinois) Samuel S. Baxter Professor Emeritus; Civil and Environmental Engineering. Professor Emeritus. Coastal engineering; hydraulics engineering; hydrology.
Richard Woodring, PhD (University of Illinois) Dean of Engineering Emeritus. Professor Emeritus. Structural engineering, reinforced concrete.
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