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ABET Accreditation

NNU’s Department of Engineering is pleased to announce its programs have officially achieved ABET accreditation. ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, Inc.) is a non-profit, non-governmental organization that is an internationally recognized accreditor of college and university programs, specializing in the disciplines of applied science, computing, engineering, and engineering technology.

This accomplishment is the culmination of an intense five-year process of program building, growth, assessment and evaluation to meet ABET’s rigorous standards. “This ABET ‘stamp of approval’ ensures that the education offered in our engineering program meets the international measure of high quality and that NNU’s graduates are well prepared to serve at the forefront of engineering careers both here in the Valley and around the globe,” says engineering program director Dr. Stephen Parke.

Student, alumni, faculty and staff, as well as the community and media, are invited to an ABET accreditation announcement and celebration event on Monday, August 31. The ceremony will begin at 12 noon in front of the Thomas Family Health and Science Center. Mark Durcan, CEO of Micron, and Jim Nottingham, vice president and general manager of the Hewlett Packard Imaging and Printing Group, will speak, highlighting the importance of growing engineering and technology education in the region.

Immediately following the ceremony, from 12:30 to 1 p.m., there will be a technology showcase and networking time inside the first floor atrium of the Thomas Center where guests can interact with NNU’s engineering students and faculty and view current design and research projects, including agricultural drones and NASA RockSat and CubeSat projects.

NNU has a 60-year history of providing quality engineering physics education, started in 1955 by Manhattan Project scientist Dr. Gilbert Ford. The department has over 300 alumni pioneering in science and engineering fields around the globe. The NNU Bachelor of Science in Engineering (BSE) program has 85 students enrolled with six faculty and two staff. It already has 18 graduates whose degrees will be grandfathered into the newly accredited status. It is a multidisciplinary program focusing on broad engineering fundamentals and liberal arts, and includes a choice of upper-division concentrations in electrical, mechanical, and engineering physics.

John Lonai (Milton-Freewater, Ore.), a 2015 engineering graduate, said of the accreditation announcement, “The program has been well established and doing a phenomenal job training its students to think critically as real engineers with a humanitarian and ethical base. The fact that this is finally coming to fruition is really awesome. It means the students will just be finally getting the recognition they deserve.”

ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, Inc.) is a non-profit, non-governmental organization that is an internationally recognized accreditor of college and university programs, specializing in the disciplines of applied science, computing, engineering, and engineering technology. ABET allows secondary education programs to better reflect current and future industry needs by guiding the educational process through evaluations developed by ABET members. According to the ABET website, those involved with NNU can rest assured that graduates from an ABET-accredited program have a solid educational foundation and are capable of leading the way in innovation, emerging technologies, and anticipating the welfare and safety needs of the public.

Objectives and Outcomes

Program Statement

The Engineering program at Northwest Nazarene University provides a high-quality, interdisciplinary engineering education in a Christian environment that prepares our graduates for professional careers and advanced studies in engineering. We seek to instill in each graduate, a personal commitment to using their engineering skills and career to be "God's creative and redemptive agent in the world."


ABET Engineering Program Educational Objectives (PEO's)

Within a few years after graduation, NNU engineering alumni will be:

  1. Practicing engineering (or a related field) with professionalism, integrity, and Christian principles.
  2. Advancing in their career through continuous learning, leadership, and teamwork.
  3. Serving their profession, the community, and God's creation.

ABET Engineering Student Outcomes (SO's)

By the time of graduation, NNU engineering students will demonstrate:

  1. An ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering.
  2. An ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data.
  3. An ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability.
  4. An ability to function on multidisciplinary teams.
  5. An ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems.
  6. An understanding of professional and ethical responsibility.
  7. An ability to communicate effectively.
  8. The broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context.
  9. A recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in, life-long learning.
  10. A knowledge of contemporary issues.
  11. An ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice.

Program History

NNU has had a small but high-quality BS Engineering Physics program for almost 60 years. The program has over 250 graduates, many of whom are now in distinguished leadership roles in engineering companies or universities. In 2009, NNU opened the new 50,000 sqft Thomas Family Health & Science Center, enabling the creation of a new BS Engineering program. In October of that year, the new program was approved. BS Engineering classes began in August 2010, with an initial freshman class of 11 students. Enrollment has grown to 62 in Spring 2014. Our first class of five graduates will graduate in May 2014, to be immediately followed by an initial ABET accreditation review visit in Fall 2014.