In newly released national rankings of universities offering a Ph.D. in engineering, the College of Engineering at Wichita State University is ranked in the top 100 engineering graduate programs, one of only two institutions from the state of Kansas to make the list.
The 2020 rankings by U.S. News and World Report are based on a number of factors including reputation among peer institutions and industry recruiters, student selectivity, faculty resources and research expenditures – an area where Wichita State far outperforms peers. A recently released National Science Foundation report of FY2017 total engineering research expenditures ranked Wichita State 49th in the nation, far more than any other institution in Kansas.
Impressively, Wichita State’s rank – 95th – is tied with a number of state “flagship” universities, including the University of Kansas, the University of Kentucky, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and the University of South Carolina. This is particularly noteworthy given Wichita State’s urban serving role. In fact, less than a third of the top 100 engineering programs – Wichita State included – are located in one of the country’s 200 largest cities.
“These rankings confirm that Wichita State is not only the best value proposition for an engineering education in the state of Kansas, our high level of research activity rightfully places us among the best in the nation,” said Dennis Livesay, dean of the College of Engineering. “It verifies that we are living up to our designation as Kansas’ only urban public research university by providing an affordable education to our community and by helping industry solve its most pressing issues through research.”
The ranking is tied to $62.4 million in industry and government-funded engineering research done at Wichita State. In fact, the latest NSF ranking also places Wichita State fifth in total aerospace engineering research dollars, just ahead of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (6) and Purdue University (7).
The National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR) generates a significant amount of the university's R&D funding to perform industry and government certification testing and research. The university as a whole recently set a new record for total research and development awards in FY2018 with a total of $104.5 million, the first time the university has achieved greater than $100 million in research awards in its history.