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Imagine you have just graduated from high school and your dream has always been to become a chemical engineer one day. But the thought of going to college and studying for four years may worry you a bit.
To ensure you get to your goal, it is best to create a plan of action. And that starts by deciding where in the world you want to live in, and which chemical engineer school you want to graduate from.
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If you're looking to start a career as a chemical engineer, then it's important to get the proper education you need. That often begins with finding the right school that offers a solid curriculum to prepare you for a career in chemical engineering.
But with so many choices of schools to attend across the globe, it's even important to sift through the bunch by looking at some of the best schools that offer a chemical engineering degree program.
What to Look for in a Chemical Engineering Degree Program
From resources to research opportunities, there are several factors to consider when you're pursuing a chemical engineering degree program. The more resources a school can offer you to support your learning and career endeavors, the better experience you'll likely have. That's why it's crucial to consider not only the availability of your degree program at the school but the resources the school offers, too.
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Some of the best schools for aspiring chemical engineers provide support services for academic enrichment and career advancement, including tutoring, degree-related clubs, networking events and on-site job fairs for engineers.
You can also find schools that offer future chemical engineers research opportunities thanks to the labs, research centers, equipment and partnerships with organizations the school may have.
Accreditation is another important factor to consider when you're evaluating the quality of a chemical engineering degree program. A school with accreditation has gone through a review process to meet the accrediting organization's standard for education. Even some of the oldest engineering schools in the world hold multiple accreditations.
Some of the best chemical engineering schools in the world are ABET-accredited, too. With an ABET-accredited chemical engineering degree, you may increase your chances of getting hired by employers. That's because many employers across the globe recognize ABET accreditation due to its high-quality education.
Some organizations may even require obtaining a degree from an ABET-accredited school to work as a chemical engineer for their company.
What are the Best Chemical Engineering Degree Programs for Undergraduates?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, chemical engineers typically need a bachelor's degree. So, it's important to find a school that offers the level of education you need.
But if you're considering going abroad, it's a good idea to start by looking at some of the best schools offering undergraduate degrees for future chemical engineers.
Here are some of the best schools around the world:
Stanford University (United States)
As one of the top chemical engineering schools in the United States, Stanford University offers undergraduates multiple opportunities to conduct research, use modern engineering tools and design and conduct experiments thanks to its strong curriculum.
Some of the courses you can expect to take at this ABET-accredited school cover topics, such as thermodynamics, energy, and mass transfer, and applied mathematics. Stanford also offers an honors program where you can conduct in-depth research and learn chemical engineering at an advanced level alongside other students and a faculty mentor.
You can also continue your studies by getting a graduate degree. You can even apply for a master's degree so you can complete your graduate degree the same time you're working on your bachelor's degree as long as you have a strong academic background.
Technical University of Munich (Germany)
At the Technical University of Munich, you can pursue a degree program that combines the content in engineering and natural sciences to prepare you for your career as a chemical engineer.
The school's curriculum not only prepares you with the essential chemistry and math skills you need for engineering but it also includes an internship to help you gain professional experience.
You can continue your education and pursue a graduate degree in chemical engineering at the Technical University of Munich, too.
University of Oxford (United Kingdom)
The University of Oxford provides a high-quality curriculum that prepares you for a career as a chemical engineer through its engineering science program. In the third and fourth year of your studies, you can specialize in chemical engineering.
The curriculum also incorporates small groups and classes lead by a tutor for discussing the coursework in depth for academic enrichment. The school also offers small classes, tutor rooms, and a lending library to enhance your learning.
University of Tokyo (Japan)
As one of the best engineering schools in Japan, there's much to look forward to when you pursue your undergraduate degree at the University of Tokyo (UTokyo).
Its undergraduate program in chemical system engineering provides a solid education that covers various fundamental principles and topics in chemistry and chemical systems engineering, including process system engineering, chemical engineering, and organic chemistry.
The university also offers students the ability to experiment and practice what they learn. UTokyo also has several research centers you can take advantage of as an undergraduate, including the Akutsu Lab and the Okubu-Wakihara Lab.
What are the Best Chemical Engineering Schools for Graduates?
If you want to continue your studies, graduate school is a great option to explore. But some schools outshine others. Here are some of the best chemical engineering schools for graduates around the world, according to The World University Rankings:
- California Institute of Technology (United States)
- Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (Switzerland)
- ETH Zurich (Switzerland)
- Georgia Institute of Technology (United States)
- Massachusetts of Institute of Technology (United States)
- National University of Singapore (Singapore)
- Peking University (China)
- Princeton University (United States)
- University of Cambridge (United Kingdom)
Finding the best degree program to start your career as a chemical engineer calls for finding some of the best schools that offer the curriculum and opportunities you need. But you don't have to graduate only from the top 10 universities in the world to be successful.
There are hundreds more colleges and universities that offer chemical engineering programs, and those students who study hard and dedicate their entire focus to learning this field will certainly be able to build a strong career, regardless of which country you study in or where you graduated from.
By considering your true needs and the resources available at some of the best chemical engineering schools around the world, you can get closer to finding the right program to help you launch your career as a chemical engineer.