Mechanical Engineering and GISC Programs Receive Distinguished Accreditations

Published: September 17, 2013

Mechanical Engineering and GISC Programs Receive Distinguished Accreditations

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas—Two programs at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi have received prestigious national accreditations.  The new Mechanical Engineering bachelor’s degree program received its first accreditation from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) and the Geographic Information Science (GISC) program has been re-accredited.

 “This prestigious ABET accreditation is another step toward making our Mechanical Engineering program a leader in the state,” said University President/CEO Flavius Killebrew.  “Our GISC program has a long tradition of excellence known nationwide, and we are glad to continue producing graduates who are ready to enter their professions capable of leading the way in innovation and emerging technology.” 

ABET is an international accreditation organization that specializes in engineering, surveying & mapping, and computer science.  To achieve accreditation, the University had to demonstrate that graduates meet specific student outcomes and that programs meet high curriculum requirements set by ABET.   The University must also show continuous improvement, and maintain adequate faculty, facilities and institutional support.

The Mechanical Engineering program began in 2009 and has already graduated 14 students.  The accreditation extends retroactively to cover all Mechanical Engineering graduates since May 2012.  There are nearly 300 students enrolled in the program for the fall semester.

“Our Mechanical Engineering Bachelor’s degree program, now in its fifth year, has met the same standards as many programs that had been in place for over half a century,” said Dr. L.D. Chen, Director of the School of Engineering and Computing Sciences. “The accreditation gives our graduates enhanced opportunities in their career options, licensure, global mobility, and more.”

The GISC program at the Conrad Blucher Institute was first accredited by ABET in 2000, just after the first students in the program graduated. The Institute is home to the largest endowed Geographic Information Systems program in the country.  Dr. Gary Jeffress, Director of the Conrad Blucher Institute, says this accreditation is very important to the futures of the students in program.

“The accreditation shows employers that our graduates meet ABET's very high academic standards,” said Jeffress. “For example, U.S. federal agencies employing surveyors will not hire graduates unless they are from an ABET-accredited program.” 

Currently, graduates of the Island University work in a variety of government agencies including the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Agency and the Food and Drug Administration and in various leading engineering companies such as Emerson Process Management, Chevron and Schlumberger.

ABET was founded in 1932 and is recognized worldwide, with accredited programs in 23 countries.