Gannon University’s  College of Engineering  and Business will be offering an industrial engineering program beginning in the fall.

This new program offered by the College of Engineering and Business is a direct response to the increase in demand for highly trained engineers to design, organize and optimize complex processing in fields such as manufacturing, healthcare, transportation and other industries.

William L. (W.L.) Scheller II, Ph.D., dean of the College of Engineering and Business, said that he thinks the addition of the new program to the department is yet another example of the college’s innovation in the fast-paced engineering field.

“Industrial engineers enhance every operation,” Scheller said. “They design and implement safe, healthy and productive workplaces in all industries.  Industrial engineers help companies get the most out of their resources through controlling quality and optimizing processes.”

Scheller said Erie has a great industrial tradition and is developing a very strong healthcare sector and a wide variety of services.

Adam Wolf, a junior mechanical engineering major, said it is great to see another field added to engineering at Gannon.

“It gives students more options within the College of Engineering and Business on what they want to have as a future career,” Wolf said. “This movement Gannon is taking with the new industrial engineering program is a great way to target more incoming students to build on top of the great reputation Gannon offers.”

This new program’s curriculum will prepare its graduates to design, develop, implement and improve integrated systems using analytical, com putational and experimental practices.

All graduating seniors from the new program will qualify to take the Fundamentals of Engineering Exam, which is the first step toward the professional licensure.  Students are encouraged to complete an internship with local companies such as GE Transportation Systems, Industrial Sales & Manufacturing Inc. or LORD Corporation, among many others.

Students enrolled in the new industrial engineering program will experience the opportunity to collaborate with other disciplines such as mechanical engineering, biomedical engineering and the Dahlkemper School of Business.

Scheller said that in this way, the students will experience what it is like to be a field engineer under the name of a small business or a large corporation.

Additionally, there is the opportunity to collaborate with the entrepreneurs through Gannon’s Small Business Development Center and the Erie Technology Incubator, both located on campus.

Engineers trained at Gannon have served in the Erie community for more than 50 years, Scheller said.

“With this new program, we hope to contribute to the development of new industries and services here in the region, nation and worldwide,” Scheller said.

Ryan Carter, a junior environmental engineering major, said he is glad to see the engineering program expanding.

“Hopefully this means more engineering programs will develop and create more opportunities for current and incoming students,” Carter said.

This article by Anita Peduto originally appeared in The Gannon Knight on Nov. 12, 2014.