Published: April 9, 2014

Tremendous growth in enrollments and a changing economic, technological and reputational landscape have prompted the College of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Colorado Boulder to set two ambitious new goals for the year 2020. Improvements in the college’s “Best Graduate Schools” rankings, released in mid-March by U.S. News & World Report, indicate good progress in the right direction.

In a newly published revision of its strategic plan, Engineering 2020: Vision for Excellence, the college reveals aspirations to double engineering enrollments and make the list of the top 20 engineering programs in the country at both the graduate and undergraduate levels by fall 2020.

“Our refreshed outlook for Engineering 2020 raises the bar for growth, performance and culture within the College of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Colorado Boulder,” said Dean Robert H. Davis. “It embraces our expanding student body, faculty, staff and research programs that enrich the lives and education of our students while delivering an excellent return on investment for the people of Colorado.”

CU-Boulder’s College of Engineering and Applied Science currently ranks 32nd among undergraduate engineering programs and 34th among graduate engineering programs nationwide, and is the top-ranked engineering school in the Mountain Time Zone. Its aerospace engineering graduate program jumped from 14th to ninth this year in the newly posted 2015 U.S. News rankings, while graduate programs in chemical engineering and in civil engineering each moved up four spots to 14th and 15th respectively. Programs in electrical engineering and in environmental engineering also saw gains.

“As the needs of our nation evolve we are one of many companies looking to schools like CU-Boulder to recruit and train the next generation of engineers,” said Kathryn G. Tobey, Lockheed Martin Corp.’s vice president and general manager of the Special Programs Line of Business in the Space Systems Co. and a member of the college’s Engineering Advisory Council. “In order for our company and our country to compete in challenging global markets, we require a new generation of thought leaders who are well-rounded engineers prepared with technical, leadership and business skills needed to transform our business.”

Read more: A copy of A Fresh Look at Engineering 2020: Vision for Excellence is available online at