University of Virginia School of Engineering and Applied Science

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

The University of Virginia School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS), established in 1836, is the oldest engineering school in the South and the fourth oldest in the United States.[1]

The school[edit]

SEAS is one of 10 schools and colleges at the University of Virginia. It is the second-largest school at U.Va. and is home to 1,993 undergraduates and 654 graduate students. Twenty-six percent of its undergraduates are women, and 24 percent are minorities. For the class of 2008, the average SAT score of matriculating students was 1353 out of a possible 1600; 76 percent graduated in the top ten percent of their high school class. Forty percent of SEAS students pursue a minor; 10 percent choose economics as a minor.[2]

Thornton Hall, the long-time home of the SEAS
Wilsdorf Hall

In 2005, engineering students placed first in Phase One of a national competition for computer chip design. The team bested teams from 27 other universities. U.Va.'s entry, "An SRAD Image Processor as a Reconfigurable, Temperature-Aware SoC Designed for Low-Power Operation", won a small cash prize for the school. The contest was sponsored by the semiconductor industry to improve the design of integrated computer circuits.[3]

The Aerospace Engineering fourth-year class entered and won the 2005 NASA Vehicle Systems Student Design Competition with their unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) Mars flyer design. They received a small cash prize for the Aerospace Engineering Department, as well as the opportunity to present their design at an industry conference held in Columbus, Ohio during the summer of 2005.[4]

Also in the summer of 2005, an undergraduate SEAS student drove 13,000 miles round-trip from Virginia to Alaska in a vegetable oil powered 1976 Mercedes 240D.[5] For the year, the school was awarded $50 million in new research contracts by the United States government.

In November 2006, a new academic building, Wilsdorf Hall, was dedicated. The new structure is for collaborative research in materials science and materials engineering, chemical engineering, and nanotechnology. It also features a snack bar and coffee shop with an associated student lounge.

In March 2009, the school received a $10 million grant from NASA and the United States Air Force to develop the engines of new hypersonic aircraft that could fly at Mach 12 and at altitudes of up to 100,000 feet.[6] Other aspects of the craft will be designed by two other centers receiving similar grants at Texas A&M and Teledyne.


Rodman Scholars Program[edit]

Founded in 1979, the Rodman Scholars Program (named for Walter Sheldon Rodman, former professor and dean of the engineering school)[7] consists of the top 5-6 percent of each class of engineering students. There are many benefits for Rodman Scholars, which include living in the honors dorms first year, exclusive versions of common first-year courses, and priority registration. While most are selected automatically by the admissions office, some may apply during their first semester. Rodmans are expected to maintain at least a 3.0 GPA throughout their entire academic career.

Professor Dana Elzey currently chairs the program.


  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • Materials Science and Engineering
  • Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
  • Science, Technology, and Society
  • Systems and Information Engineering

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Chemical Engineering Department History. Retrieved June 28, 2006.
  2. ^ SEAS Facts at a Glance. Retrieved June 28, 2006.
  3. ^ Engineering Graduate Students Win Semiconductor Research Design Challenge. Retrieved June 28, 2006.
  4. ^ U.Va. Aerospace Students Win First Place in National NASA Competition. Retrieved July 12, 2006.
  5. ^ Student’s Vegetable-oil-powered Car Makes it From Virginia to Alaska and Back. Retrieved June 28, 2006.
  6. ^ U.Va. to lead New $10 Million Center for Hypersonic Propulsion
  7. ^ Vaughan, Joseph. Rotunda Tales: Stories from the University of Virginia, 1920-1960. pp. 150–153. 

Coordinates: 38°02′00″N 78°30′36″W / 38.033236°N 78.509996°W / 38.033236; -78.509996