School of Engineering

Mission and Value Statements

Our mission is to prepare students to assume engineering positions in industry with the potential to advance to leadership positions.

It is the mission of the faculty to provide a curriculum which is relevant to current engineering practice and strongly applied in nature. The faculty provides an environment in which students develop the knowledge and skills necessary to meet the engineering design challenges of the future with flexibility and creativity. Students develop technical competency through classroom/laboratory work and through the supervised on-site work experience provided in the student's industry experience.

Our mission is fulfilled by commitment to continual improvement and refinement through critical review. Such review requires both close contact with current engineering practice and a commitment to those elements of a general education program required for a well-balanced education. For this reason faculty involvement with the student industry experience and with consulting practice is strongly encouraged. At the same time close communication with the academic community at large assures that the students' technical education is embedded in a strongly supportive general education program.


Our values reflect our educational mission. We are an academic community in a nation for which the intrinsic value of each individual is taken as fundamental. Thus we strive to provide an environment in which each member of our academic community--student, staff member, and faculty--can reach his or her fullest potential.

Just as we value each individual in our community, we value the environment in which we live. The engineering community strongly influences the environment through the practice of its profession. For that reason we strive to build into our curriculum an awareness of, and a sensitivity to, those areas in which engineering practice affects the environment. Such awareness extends beyond technical knowledge to include ethical responsibility in the practice of our profession.

The Engineering Profession and Career Opportunities


Engineers apply science, mathematics, and professional judgment to solve technical problems in industry and society. They design and develop products, processes, services and systems. Engineers test, produce, operate, maintain, sell, install and manage products and systems. Many work in public health, transportation and environmental protection.

In today's world, engineers are expected to contribute more than technical competence. As professionals, engineers are concerned with the impact of their work on society and the changing values and priorities of society. The current emphasis on science and technology has increased public interest in engineering education as a general preparation for living as well as earning a living. To deal effectively with rapid changes in technology, engineers must have a broad undergraduate education firmly based upon the basic sciences and embedded within a supportive liberal education program. Engineers must have the ability to visualize a problem in its total context.

The need for broadly educated engineering graduates is very high and is expected to grow rapidly during the next decade. Demand varies depending on location, type of local industry, and the economy. West Michigan is one of the fastest-growing technical, manufacturing, and industrial regions of the state, and engineering opportunities in this region are good and are expected to improve during the next decade.

The Padnos Legacy

Grand Valley State University has named the College of Engineering and Computing in honor of Seymour and Esther Padnos to recognize their commitment to creating an environment where students and faculty can reach their full potential in the fields of engineering and computing. It is the aim of the University to inspire future engineers and computing professionals to live up to the personal and professional ideals of the Padnos family.

One of the hallmarks of the School of Engineering is its focus on environmental responsibility. This important societal issue has been integrated into all facets of the engineering curriculum.


Page last modified September 10, 2010