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The Department of Civil Engineering’s degree programs in civil engineering and geoengineering prepare students for the world’s increasing needs in designing sustainable infrastructure systems, both built and natural, and in developing environmentally responsible use of earth resources, both surface and subsurface. Our faculty members are internationally recognized for research in landscape vulnerability assessment, wind energy development, stream restoration, structural response to extreme loading, water treatment, environmental remediation, seismic imaging and material characterization, traffic control and safety, hydraulic fracturing, and more.
With roots dating back more than a century, our department developed one of the University’s first engineering programs. The state’s first wastewater treatment plant was designed by one of our faculty. Alumni include founders of major engineering firms, the first woman engineer in the Wisconsin Highway Commission, a pioneer in industrial pollution control, former leaders in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Transportation Research Board, and many others.
Our highly-ranked programs prepare students for careers far beyond the design of bridges, roads, and tunnels. Students learn about and develop solutions to diverse problems such as sustainable water supplies, structural health monitoring, storm water runoff treatment, and public health. The civil engineering program provides a core within five sub-fields: environmental, geomechanics, structures, transportation, and water resources. Geoengineering majors develop an emphasis is geoenvironmental, geofluids, or georesources, all within a strong background in earth sciences. Our students have the opportunity to put their ideas into action through undergraduate research and participate in social entrepreneurship through a unique series of courses called the Acara Challenge.
Our department focuses on collaborative and interdisciplinary research within critical areas such as managing and sustaining water and land-use infrastructure, mitigating disaster of the natural and built environments, engineering and developing earth resources, and designing renewable energy systems. The department is home to the Multi-Axial Subassemblage Testing (MAST) Laboratory, which houses a unique structural testing system that allows our faculty and others from around the country to test the effects of earthquakes, high winds, and other extreme forces on buildings and other structures. Several faculty members from our department are affiliated with St. Anthony Falls Laboratory, one of the world’s premier fluid mechanics research facilities. In addition, the National Center for Earth-Surface Dynamics brings together engineers and scientists from across many disciplines to study how erosion, sediment movement, and other forces shape the planet’s surface. Our department houses a first-of-its-kind Minnesota Traffic Observatory that analyzes traffic on Twin Cities freeways.
Our faculty members have connections and collaborations within Minnesota businesses and international companies. We partner with government agencies, consulting firms, technical associations, and other universities to expand knowledge in the field and solve complex engineering problems.
Civil engineering consistently ranks among the top 20 programs in the country. The geoengineering program is regarded as one of the top, both nationally and internationally.
Department of Civil Engineering
College of Science and Engineering
University of Minnesota
122 Civil Engineering
500 Pillsbury Drive S.E.
Minneapolis, MN 55455
267 undergraduate students
159 graduate students