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Molinaroli College of Engineering and Computing

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Mechanical Engineering Undergraduate Program

Mechanical Engineering students at the University of South Carolina can expect high quality teaching coupled with internships, co-ops, and research and extracurricular opportunities.

Why Study Mechanical Engineering?

Mechanical engineering is the design, analysis and control of objects, devices and systems involving motion and energy. Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest and most diverse fields of engineering.

With a mechanical engineering degree, you will be versatile and employable across a range of industries. Mechanical engineers produce devices and systems with a wide range of applications, including in industries such as:

  • transportation
  • manufacturing
  • biotechnology
  • energy conversion
  • robotics

As a mechanical engineering major you'll study how systems produce power, use power, and move energy from one place or form to another, whether it's in a wind turbine or the engine of an aircraft. You'll also use computer systems to create and analyze designs, run simulations, and generate specifications and code for manufacturing.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the largest employers of mechanical engineers in the U.S. are in the fields of architectural and engineering services, machinery manufacturing, transportation equipment, computer and electronic product manufacturing and scientific research and development.


Our mechanical engineering curriculum combines design and analysis with computer modelling and hands-on laboratory work.

Major subjects in the mechanical engineering curriculum include:

  • Engineering Graphics and Visualization
  • Statics, Dynamics and Kinematics
  • Mechanics of Solids
  • Thermodynamic Fundamentals
  • Fluid Mechanics
  • Applied Numerical Methods
  • Electrical Engineering for Non-Majors
  • Controls
  • Mechatronics
  • Engineering Materials
  • Manufacturing Processes
  • Project Management for Engineers
  • Mechanical Engineering Laboratories
  • Mechanical Design Electives
  • Mechanical Design Capstone

The curriculum also includes the Carolina Core, foundational math and science courses, and free electives. Independent study and special topics courses also provide unique learning opportunities.

Visit Undergraduate Curricula and Courses for additional details.

Electives and Specializations

The mechanical engineering undergraduate program allows you to specialize your degree through the intentional selection of the engineering elective and free elective classes that are part of the curriculum.  These classes can be tailored towards adding a minor to your program of study, or to developing advanced knowledge in an area of mechanical engineering such as design and manufacturing, advanced materials, thermo-fluids, energy engineering, nuclear energy, or aerospace engineering.

Capstone Design

Our mechanical design capstone computing experience is a two-semester course sequence where teams of seniors work on real-world problems from industries and other clients.

During your capstone design project, you will improve your ability to manage complex engineering projects. With support from the industry sponsor, you will plan the project, specify requirements, develop a prototype or finished product, test the product, and validate your results. Written reports and oral presentations are integrated in this real-world environment.

Recent capstone design projects in mechanical engineering include:

  • AGY Precision Fin Adjustor for Cooling and Attenuation Processes for Fiberized Glass
  • Allied Air Single Packaged Vertical Unit Efficiency Enhancement
  • RBC Bearings RBY76007 Bearing Assembly Improvement
  • Savannah River National Laboratory Materials Lifting Apparatus
  • Trane Differential Header Pressure Measurement System


Mechanical engineering students participate in a variety of clubs including our student chapters of:

  • American Society of Mechanical Engineering
  • Society of Automotive Engineers
  • Society for the Advancement of Material and Process Engineering
  • American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers

Undergraduate research opportunities in mechanical engineering are available.  Undergraduate researchers get involved on a volunteer, course credit, or paid position basis. Research areas include advanced materials and multi-scale manufacturing, mechanics and multi-physics, thermo-fluids, energy, fuel cells, and aerospace and nuclear engineering,

With other undergraduates in our college, mechanical engineering students take full advantage of living-learning communities, mentorship opportunities, study abroad, intramurals, internships, just hanging out with friends, and more.

Visit Student Experience to learn more.

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