Mechanical Engineering, WPI’s oldest and largest department, continues to attract renowned faculty and top students because what we do here is remarkable. The department’s resources allow for diverse research and exploration that give faculty and students opportunities to directly impact areas of most concern to them.

In a collaborative and challenging environment, students and faculty work together on projects and research that form the foundation of our commitment to learning while doing. Faculty help students explore and choose the academic path that matches their interests, and then students dig deeper with transformative projects and independent research. From their first courses here, students sharpen their critical thinking skills and put their problem-solving abilities to real use—giving them a distinct career advantage.

The academic degrees offered in the Mechanical Engineering department are:

For degrees, research and facilities in Aerospace Engineering (AE), Manufacturing Engineering (MFE), Materials Process Engineering (MPE), Materials Science and Engineering (MTE), and Robotics Engineering (RBE) please visit the individual program websites:

Turbocharged Journey

Mechanical engineering alumnus Arthur Hyde ’77 describes how he made it his mission to save the Mustang during his career at Ford in the Summer 2017 issue of the WPI Journal. 

Student Projects In the News

The Boston Globe reports on Lola, the injured sea turtle who received a first-of-its-kind prosthetic flipper designed by three WPI engineering students. The new flipper will allow Lola and other maimed turtles to be rehabilitated and live a more normal life--and is another step toward next-generation animal prosthetics. The student project team included two mechanical engineering majors working under the guidance of project advisors Brian Savilonis and Yuxiang Liu as part of their Major Qualifying Project (MQP).  

In the News

WCVB TV 5’s Chronicle aired a story about PABI, a sophisticated and loveable robotic penguin developed by WPI and Salem State University that could change the way behavioral therapies are provided to children with autism. PABI is the brainchild of WPI mechanical and robotics engineering professor Gregory Fischer and Salem State University School of Education professor Laurie Dickstein-Fischer. 


Referring to him as a “leader in haptic technology,” the American Society of Mechanical Engineers featured Cagdas Onal, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, in the article.  “Many potential applications exist, including prosthetic/orthotic devices, wearable technologies, robotic collaborators/assistants, elder care, and systems that augment human performance,” Onal said.

American Society of Mechanical Engineers

Projects & Research

Students in WPI’s mechanical engineering department have many choices for projects and research including those in aeronautics, astronautics, biomechanical, engineering mechanics, manufacturing, materials science and engineering, mechanical design, robotics, and thermal-fluid engineering.

Improving Windmill Gears

Wind turbines are expected to produce electricity. But the quality of their design and manufacture is a key factor in their efficiency and dependability. Watch this video to see how WPI is working to improve the process and outcome.

WPI Collaborates with Industry in Research Centers

Mechanical engineering students also have access to several collaborative alliances between WPI and industry.

  • The Metal Processing Institute (MPI) and its three centers work to advance research, solve business challenges, and promote materials science partnerships.
  • The Integrative Materials Design Center, iMDC is a WPI-based research center dedicated to advancing sustainable materials-process- component design and manufacturing for better performance, reliability, and recyclability.
  • The Center for Advanced Research in Drying, CARD is devoted to research in drying of moist, porous materials including food, agricultural products, forestry products, chemical products, textiles, and biopharmaceuticals.
  • The HAAS Technical Education Center earned the distinction of becoming one of a handful of HTECH showrooms nationwide. Students in mechanical engineering programs use these facilities to conceive, design, and create their own CNC machined parts for projects. 

Career Development

With the varied skills and problem-solving capabilities of a mechanical engineering education, graduates find careers in industries from aerospace to academia to automotive. Our graduates find their project-based work gives them the hands-on experience needed to hit the ground running after graduation.

BS/MS Option

Outstanding mechanical engineering students may opt to earn a BS/MS degree in an accelerated time. Students interested in the program are encouraged to complete an online graduate admissions application during their junior year, noting they want the BS/MS program for mechanical engineering.

Meet Our Students

Emma by the banks of the Osumi Canyon
Emma R.
Junior, BS in Mechanical Engineering

Emma was one of 24 students who traveled to the Albania Project Center to complete their IQPs. She and her team—three other WPI students—assisted a tourism company, Albania Rafting Group, with the development of an eco-adventure park aimed at providing additional revenue sources and growth for the company. The team conducted surveys to identify popular adventure activities among the target audience, researched how these activities could be implemented, and brainstormed possible locations for them on the sponsor’s site.

Gyneth Campbell
Gyneth C.
Senior, BS in Mechanical Engineering

A native of Colombia has an eye-opening experience studying abroad and looks to positively impact the military and the energy industry after graduation.

Keith Guay
Keith G.
Senior, BS in Biomedical Engineering & Mechanical Engineering

A BME/ME double major receives invaluable faculty mentorship through hands-on projects, lab experience, and more.

Image of Shamsur
Shamsur S.
Junior, BS in Mechanical Engineering

Shamsur traveled to the Albania Project Center to complete his IQP, which was focused on mapping the entrepreneurial ecosystem of Albania. He and his team of three other WPI students researched how entrepreneurs in Albania’s capital, Tirana, build new ventures, overcome challenges, and identify resources and support needed from various organizations. The students conducted interviews with entrepreneurs and different organizations to help their sponsor learn how to help facilitate and grow entrepreneurship activity in Albania. The team also created a website that provides information about events and services that would help entrepreneurs.