Director and Advisor: John Stratton, Computer Science


Frank Dunnivant, Chemistry

Kurt Hoffman, Physics

Doug Hundley, Mathematics

Doug Juers, Physics and BBMB

About the Program

Engineering fields provide opportunities to directly apply knowledge of mathematics, natural science, and computing to design critical infrastructure and everyday items that work efficiently and reliably. Engineers in modern society have been called on to address problems from fossil fuel dependency to housing shortages by finding more efficient ways to manufacture items or adapt alternative technologies to new environments. However, most big problems in our modern world are not merely technical problems. Technical problems and proposed solutions exist within economic, social, and legal environments which require the most impactful engineers to be able to exhibit the personal qualities cultivated by a liberal arts education, such as being able to balance multiple values held in tension, view issues from a variety of technical and non-technical perspectives, and communicate clearly and effectively with technical and non-technical peers.

The dual-degree program in engineering gives Whitman students the opportunity to extend their liberal arts education into technical fields not offered at Whitman. A student completes the program by fulfilling the requirements of a liberal arts education at Whitman, with a focus on applicable mathematics and sciences, then transferring to another institution to complete a technical degree from an ABET-accredited program, ultimately earning both a B.A. from Whitman and a B.S. or B.E. from the other institution. Typically, a student will complete the entire program with 3 years of study at Whitman and 2 years at a partner institution. Students elect to participate in the program by declaring one of the pre-engineering majors, with the program director and a faculty advisor supporting that major as academic advisors. Whitman has four partner institutions in this program: The California Institute of Technology, the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science at Columbia University, the James McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis, and the College of Engineering at the University of Washington. Transfer to non-affiliated institutions is also possible with approval of the Whitman 3-2 Engineering program committee, if the program is ABET-accredited and students earn acceptance through their general transfer application process. Some partner institutions also have options for earning a Master’s degree in engineering with a total of 6 years of study.

Notes and Cautions

Successful completion of the dual-degree program in engineering requires that a student apply, earn acceptance, and transfer to another institution, completing an engineering (or related) degree there. Partner institutions give students applying to transfer under this program special consideration, but also impose additional course, grade, and GPA requirements beyond those required by Whitman itself. Even when those requirements are met, admission is not guaranteed, although acceptance rates for most partner schools are exceptionally high for Whitman students who meet their requirements. Students interested in this program should contact a member of the program committee for additional information about partner institution transfer requirements as soon as possible for appropriate course planning, and examine our partner institutions’ websites for more information.

·         California Institute of Technology:

·         Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science at Columbia University:

·         James McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis:

·         The University of Washington College of Engineering:

Programs of Study