Strategic Plan Sets Roadmap for Mechanical Engineers at Drexel

Students work together in a lab.

The Department of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics (MEM) has released a new strategic plan that describes an exciting vision for education and research in mechanical engineering education at Drexel in the coming years.

The MEM Strategic Plan provides a roadmap for advancing the department to advance in four key areas: education and the student experience, research impact, outreach, and departmental culture. Each goal identifies specific initiatives to be launched over the next five years, including new departmental spaces to network-strengthening seminar programming and activities to increase MEM’s diversity and inclusiveness.

“Despite being one of the oldest engineering disciplines, mechanical engineering has widespread applications in developing solutions to modern problems,” said Jonathan Spanier, professor and department head. “Energy efficiency, AI-guided automation, new healthcare tools and techniques, and sustainable manufacturing are all impacted by the work of mechanical engineers.”

MEM’s comprehensive strategic plan emerged from more than a year of focused and collaborative effort by faculty, staff, students, and alumni, who sought to reimagine the department with an eye toward addressing society’s most pressing challenges. In doing so, they established a collective mission, vision, and set of core values that center community, inclusivity, and creative problem-solving, with an emphasis on empathetic and human-centered engineering.

“It is important to us that the plan will be a living document — one that we revisit regularly and adapt to new challenges and opportunities,” Spanier said. “Drexel’s educational model, co-op in particular, responds to the needs of a transforming world; accordingly, our plan is built to adjust to the shifting landscape that MEM engineers will enter and considers deeply their ethical, societal, and environmental responsibilities of engineers as they build for a better future.”