Otterbein Systems Engineering Program Earns Prestigious Accreditation

Posted Sep 06, 2022

Otterbein University’s systems engineering program has earned accreditation by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology), an internationally recognized agency that accredits programs in applied and natural science, computing, engineering and engineering technology offered by American universities.

“We are proud that the B.S. in systems engineering program has reached this important milestone,” said Michael Hudoba, chair of the Department of Engineering and Computer Science. “Although the process to earn ABET accreditation was, and is, a lot of work, it is easy when you have such a great program from a great university. Our team of faculty, staff, administration, as well as students, went above and beyond to earn this accreditation.”

For Otterbein’s systems engineering students, the ABET accreditation will allow them to continue their education with professional licensures, registrations, and certifications, which often require graduation from an ABET-accredited program. Additionally, ABET accreditation is recognized worldwide, so graduates will qualify for more jobs outside the U.S.

“Our graduates have tremendous success getting jobs or attending graduate school,” Hudoba said. “ABET accreditation opens even more doors for them, such as sitting for the Fundamentals of Engineering exam, the Principles and Practice of Engineering exam, and becoming a licensed Professional Engineer (PE).”

Otterbein began offering its bachelor of science degree in systems engineering in fall 2015, with its first class of 17 graduates completing the program in 2020. By fall 2021, there were 42 students majoring in systems engineering.

The extensive accreditation review started in 2019, and while it is traditionally a multi-year process, it was delayed one year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to Hudoba, the review consisted of evaluating Otterbein’s compliance with a set of eight criteria that cover all aspects of the student educational experience — from admission to graduation certification — and the university offices that have responsibility for those experiences. A major focus is on the Criterion that deals with our process of the assessment of our students’ attainment of a set of seven Student Learning Outcomes specific to engineering, and a continuous quality improvement process for improving the level of attainment.

“Otterbein has always had a great reputation for its undergraduate education. In the STEM fields we have hands-on experiences and small class sizes, and students develop important and lifelong professional relationships with their faculty,” Hudoba said.

“Accreditation by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET is just one more reason to study engineering at Otterbein — letting recruits know that our Systems Engineering program meets the global standard for technical education,” he added.