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UD rises in engineering rankings

Photo by Evan Krape

U.S. News and World Report ranks UD at #38 nationally, chemical engineering at #7

The 2025 edition of U.S. News and World Report’s Best Graduate Schools has ranked the University of Delaware's engineering program at #38 nationally, a jump of four spots. Additionally, UD’s consistently top-ranked chemical engineering graduate program remained in the top 10 nationally at #7.

“This momentum in the rankings reflects the outstanding work of our dedicated faculty, staff and students, as well as the strategic investments that the University has made to strengthen our intellectual capital, expand our academic programs, enhance our research capacity and provide unique opportunities to learn and grow,” said UD President Dennis Assanis. “UD’s top-notch engineering program is educating the workforce of the future and driving the growth of the Delaware region’s economy while also solving critical problems around the world."

The complete list of rankings for engineering graduate programs reflects an upward trajectory in six areas:

  • Chemical engineering, 7
  • Engineering schools, 38 (up from 42)
  • Materials engineering, 40 (up from 42)
  • Biomedical engineering, 50
  • Mechanical engineering, 50
  • Civil engineering, 51 (up from 55)
  • Electrical and computer engineering, 53 (up from 66)
  • Computer engineering, 55 (up from 57)
  • Computer science, 70 (up from 77)

“The College of Engineering is proud of the impact we are having in empowering students to achieve their educational goals, addressing society’s most vexing challenges and serving our communities,” said Levi Thompson, dean of the College of Engineering and Elizabeth Inez Kelly Professor of Chemical Engineering. “This most recent ranking, the highest in our college’s history, reflects the excellent work of our engineering and computer science faculty, staff and students and the exceptional outcomes of our strategic investments in innovative research, world-class teaching and student resources.”

Engineering innovation

Delaware engineers are driving discoveries in critical domains ranging from the sustainability of the nation’s energy infrastructure to the design and production of new biopharmaceuticals, the transformation of plastics waste into new materials, and disaster resilience along U.S. coastlines.

Innovations such as these have driven a period of remarkable growth in engineering and computing research at UD, with the College’s research expenditures exceeding $126 million in FY2023 — a 76% increase from FY2019 — and the College of Engineering comprising approximately half of the university's total research portfolio. College faculty have recently launched numerous federally funded centers, including the Center for Plastics Innovation (DOE EFRC); the Delaware Center for Musculoskeletal Research (NIH COBRE); the Center for Hybrid, Active, and Responsive Materials (NSF MRSEC); the Coastal Hazards, Equity, Economic Prosperity, and Resilience Hub (NSF CoPe); and the Center for Clean Hydrogen (DOD).

Over the past six years, the College of Engineering has established five new degree programs, including an interdisciplinary doctorate in quantum science and engineering, a biopharmaceutical sciences master’s degree that includes a 15-month internship, and a dual-degree initiative with Delaware State University. New bachelor's degree programs in materials science and engineering and cybersecurity engineering ensure that students graduating from UD keep pace with industry demands. In the fall of 2023, student enrollment in the college rose to 3,504. 

Over $20 million in philanthropic funds were raised last year alone in support of new and renovated facilities, professorships and industry partnerships.

In addition, new facilities at UD’s Science, Technology and Accelerated Research (STAR) Campus are helping to advance engineering innovation at the local, regional and national levels. The National Institute for Innovation in Manufacturing Biopharmaceuticals (NIIMBL), located at STAR, is a national-scale public-private partnership focused on biopharmaceutical manufacturing and innovation to advance new technologies, secure domestic supply chains and train the biomanufacturing workforce. NIIMBL is complemented by the Securing American Biomanufacturing Research and Education (SABRE) Center, a pilot-scale biopharmaceutical manufacturing facility currently under development, and the Institute for Engineering Driven Health. College faculty also provide leadership in key workforce development activities within the MACH2 Department of Energy regional clean hydrogen hub, which was announced in October 2023 by the Biden-Harris administration.

Engineering is part of a growing UD innovation hub that extends to Fintech, an exploding industry that uses the power of data science and computer engineering to improve financial technology, equity, and access. Other strategic engineering-related investments across campus enable solutions for pressing societal problems such as plastic pollution, the need for sustainable energy resources, including clean hydrogen, and efforts to improve the translation of research to practice.

About the rankings

In April 2024, U.S. News and World Report announced the 2025 graduate program rankings but delayed the release of the rankings for two specific programs: Best Engineering Schools and Programs and Best Clinical Psychology Programs.

The complete listing of UD graduate programs ranked by U.S. News and World Report is available on UD’s Institutional Research and Effectiveness Rankings webpage. Please note that programs and specialties used by U.S. News might vary slightly from the names of degree programs used by UD.

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