The University of Washington has announced a new online graduate degree program, the Master of Science in Civil Engineering: Energy Infrastructure. The degree, which will launch in fall 2018, will enable engineers to enter or advance in this rapidly expanding field.
Creation of the degree is driven by the fact that the country’s existing energy systems are transforming at a rapid pace. New cutting-edge technologies and the ongoing transition from fossil fuels to renewables are just a few of the trends that will lead to considerable job growth in this sector.
The specialized degree program gives engineers the comprehensive knowledge needed to plan, design, construct and manage the balance of plant components associated with energy infrastructure projects.
“This degree program focuses on expanding your knowledge of energy infrastructure, including gaining relevant skills, business knowledge, construction insights and a broader perspective on energy and utilities,” said Joe Mahoney, a UW engineering professor who serves as co-director of the program.
High Employment Demand
These skills are projected to be in high demand as new types of energy jobs are created and expanded. For example, one study by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) found that the role of wind turbine technician was the fastest growing occupation in the country, projected to rise 108 percent between now and 2024.
Many of the best jobs in the field require an advanced degree. A BLS article about solar power employment noted that “because of the complexity of some systems, a significant number of [solar industry] jobs require a master's or doctoral degree. Engineers are expected to complete continuing education and keep up with rapidly changing technology.”
Online Convenience and Flexibility
The 42-credit program will be offered 100 percent online, allowing students to participate on their schedule from anywhere in the world. The degree is structured so that students can join the program in any quarter.
This degree is offered by the UW Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, which features undergraduate and graduate degrees in a wide variety of engineering disciplines both on campus and online. It was developed in partnership with UW Continuum College, a branch of the University of Washington that expands the school’s educational impact by meeting the needs of learners wherever they are in life — and wherever they intend to go.