The Henry Samueli School of Engineering


Founded in 1965, the Samueli School of Engineering educates more than 4,000 engineers each year (3,119 undergraduates and 898 graduates) with an integrative approach that blends fundamentals, research and hands-on experience. The school’s mission is to unleash ingenuity, create opportunities and inspire ingenuity. The Samueli School’s faculty members are leaders in their disciplines who have achieved worldwide recognition for their research and dedicated teaching. The school includes five academic departments: biomedical engineering; chemical engineering and materials science; civil and environmental engineering; electrical engineering and computer science; and mechanical and aerospace engineering. Under the leadership of Dean Gregory Washington, the school pursues research that is timely, socially responsible and cutting edge, and works in partnership with industry and state and federal agencies to promote the transfer of research to applications that benefit society. Current research thrusts include communications and information technology; engineering for human health; energy and sustainability; advanced manufacturing and materials.

Focused Research

The school is equipped with excellent experimental facilities and a state-of-the-art computational infrastructure, occupying more than 295,000 square feet. It offers numerous research centers, institutes and facilities, including the Center for Pervasive Communications & Computing, The Edwards Lifesciences Center for Advanced Cardiovascular Technology, the Integrated Nanosystems Research Facility, the National Fuel Cell Research Center, the UC Irvine Combustion Lab, the Center for Embedded Computer Systems, the Center for Hydrometeorology & Remote Sensing, the Laboratory for Fluorescence Dynamics, the Center for Engineering Science in Design, and the Center for Advanced Design and Manufacturing of Integrated Microfluidics.

The school’s faculty also is active in the Institute of Transportation Studies, the Networked Systems Center, the Beckman Laser Institute & Medical Clinic, the Urban Water Research Center, and the Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center. In addition, the school is an integral part of the California Institute for Telecommunications & Information Technology (Calit2), one of four Institutes for Science & Innovation within the University of California.

The Samueli School includes the following departments:

  • The Department of Biomedical Engineering's mission is to inspire engineering minds for the advancement of human health. Engineering focus areas include biomedical photonics/optoelectronics, biomedical nano- and microscale systems/fabrication, biomedical computation/modeling, and tissue engineering. These technology areas intersect with clinical areas of focus such as cardiovascular disease, the nervous system, cancer and ophthalmology. Because of its interdisciplinary nature, biomedical engineering attracts students with a variety of backgrounds.
  • The Department of Chemical Engineering & Materials Science focuses research efforts in several areas. Chemical engineering activities concentrate in two areas: biotechnology and biomolecular engineering, which includes protein expression, metabolic engineering, bioreactor engineering, protein engineering, cell and tissue engineering, biomaterials, colloids and drug delivery; and, transport phenomena, which includes fluid, heat and mass transport in biological systems; laser-induced transport processes with applications in microfluidics, biology, and medicine; transport of biological particles (i.e., viruses, bacteria, protozoa) through environmental systems. Materials science areas include: synthesis, mechanical behavior and characterization of advanced nanostructured materials; ceramics and sol-gel processing; device packaging and manufacturing; electronic and optical materials; lightweight structures and multifunctional materials; microbiological corrosion of metals and alloys; biomaterials; polymers and related nanotechnology and nanocomposites; creep and superplasticity; fuel cell and energy related system materials; device physics; and, coatings and multilayers.
  • The Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering focuses on a wide range of scientific and engineering challenges involving civil infrastructure, natural resources and their interactions. The department strives to address these challenges with the development and application of emerging information technologies such as microsensors, satellite-based remote sensing and simulation methodologies, by promoting a systems approach to analysis and design, and by building on scientific and engineering fundamentals in the areas of structural engineering, transportation engineering and environmental engineering.
  • The Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science is creating state-of- the-art technologies in computer science and engineering, computer system design, information theory, broadband communication systems, high-speed analog and digital circuit design, signal and image processing, electromagnetics, photonics, high-efficiency power electronic circuits and alternative energy power generation. The department faculty participate in a number of research collaborations focused on areas as diverse as embedded systems, micro-electro-mechanical systems and nanotechnology, communication systems, machine intelligence, bio-chips, real-time and fault tolerant systems, parallel and distributed systems, and computer architecture.
  • The Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering includes study and research in the areas of combustion, flow physics, turbulence, energy and propulsion; environmental analysis; controls, dynamics and guidance; robotics and automation; aerospace structures; and manufacturing and materials processing, including micro-electro-mechanical systems. The department is home to excellent computational and experimental facilities, the latter including a robotics and automation laboratory, a biomechatronics laboratory, a micro-electro-mechanical systems laboratory, combustion and fuel-cell laboratories, a supersonic flow facility, and a large, low-speed wind tunnel.

Distinguished Faculty

The school's faculty members are scholars and leaders in their disciplines, and have achieved worldwide honors and recognition for their pioneering research and dedicated teaching. Nearly a third of the school’s 113 faculty members are fellows in professional societies, and 10 are members of the National Academies.

Corporate Partnerships

The school’s corporate partners program - a joint effort with the Donald Bren School of Information & Computer Sciences - and other alliances with industry offer a vital connection. It provides a continuous flow of new information and access to a pool of new engineering and computer science talent. Membership in these groups enables corporations to mine the wealth of resources available at both schools.

Gregory Washington, Dean

Dean Gregory N. Washington, Ph.D., joined The Henry Samueli School of Engineering in August 2011. Prior to his arrival at UC Irvine, he served as the interim dean for the College of Engineering at The Ohio State University, where he provided visionary leadership, oversight and management for one of the nation’s largest and highest ranked engineering programs. He joined the faculty at OSU in 1995, became the associate dean for research in 2005 and then was appointed interim dean in 2008. As a professor of mechanical engineering, his research is in the design and control of smart material systems, the design and control of hybrid electric vehicles and the design of smart electromagnetic systems.

Washington has been involved in multidomain research for the last 20 years. His core area of interest lies in the area of dynamic systems, with an emphasis on modeling and control of smart material systems and devices. He has been involved in the design and control of mechanically actuated antennas, advanced automotive systems incorporating smart materials, hybrid electric vehicles, and structural position and vibration control with smart materials. He has conducted research for a host of organizations including the National Science Foundation (NSF), NASA, General Motors Company, the Air Force Research Laboratory and the U.S. Army Research Office; and has served as a member of the U.S. Air Force Scientific Advisory Board, NSF Engineering Advisory Committee, Institute for Defense Analyses and numerous other boards.

Washington accumulated a long list of research and teaching awards from OSU, including the Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching, the Harrison Faculty Award for Excellence in Engineering Education and the Lumley Research Award. He also is the recipient of the NSF Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award. He holds bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering from North Carolina State University.

By the Numbers (2013-14)

  • Full-time faculty: 113
  • Undergraduate enrollment: 3,119
  • Graduate enrollment: 898
  • Ranked 37th in U.S. News & World Report's current listing of best engineering graduate schools