College of Engineering

Strategic Plan

To continue VCU College of Engineering's tradition of academic success and scientific innovation, our faculty and staff, foundation board members, the VCU Office of the Provost and VCU Office of the President have collaborated to set our strategic plan. This new direction complements VCU's Quest for Distinction, stimulates our collaborative, creative, and innovative culture, promotes student-centered learning, provides a global perspective of engineering, and secures VCU's role as a leader for a brighter future.


Strategic Plan PDF  
Strategic Plan PowerPoint  
Roadmap to the Strategic Plan  

2013 - 2020 Strategic Themes

  1. Build upon our legacy of student-centered learning to prepare the inter-disciplinary leaders of tomorrow

  2. Conduct research that makes a positive difference in our community and human kind

  3. Create and nurture a highly collaborative, creative, innovative and entrepreneurial culture

  4. Provide a global, real--world perspective of engineering in the learning experience

VCU Challenge for College of Engineering Dean

  1. Increase enrollment and number of degrees granted

  2. Raise academic quality of undergraduate students

  3. Increase and diversify external funding

  4. Multi-disciplinary, multi-campus collaborations

  5. Increase doctoral enrollment and engagement
President's Goal: Become a top 50 research university.

Goals for VCU College of Engineering

  1. School of Engineering body from 1,681 to 2,500 2,000 undergraduate and 500 graduate students

  2. School of Engineering faculty: from 69 to 110

  3. Funded research from $4.5 to $20 million

  4. From US News and World Report #120 to top 50 school of engineering

  5. Targeted graduate programs to top 25 in USA

VCU College of Engineering Competitors

VCU College of Engineering Organization

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Growth in Student & Faculty Population

Targeted Growth in Students & Faculty
 FY 2013FY 2020Inc.
Total Students1,6692,50050%
Total Faculty6911061%
UGRAD S/F ratio*2118-13%
*Decrease in S/F ratio is an improvement

Student Education and Engagement

  1. Undergraduate

    • Multi-disciplinary course offerings

    • Internships and pre-professional training

    • Develop new certificate programs

    • Develop an undergraduate co-op program

    • Establish undergraduate research project funding

  2. Graduate students

    • Raise enrollment qualification standards

    • Competitive stipends for Ph.D. students

    • Formalize the role of thesis committees in monitoring their Ph.D. candidate's progress

    • Publication requirement for Ph.D. students

    • Develop professional master's level programs

Cross-disciplinary Focus Areas

  • Sustainability and Energy Engineering

  • Micro and Nano Electronic Systems

  • Pharmaceutical Engineering

  • Mechanobiology and Regenerative Medicine

  • Security and Mining of Big Data

  • Device Design and Development
Note: Build core competencies/platform technologies across departments. - Systems engineering - Manufacturing technology - Materials science

Faculty Research Funding Goal

Faculty Research Funding Goal - $20,000,000

College of Engineering Facilities Development

  1. Teaching and collaborative spaces for faculty and students

    • Engineering East – re-think, re-allocate

    • Engineering West – re-think, re-allocate

    • Engineering “New”: why, what, when, where?

  2. Bring research labs into 21st century for current & new faculty, grad students and grant applications

    • Develop a master plan

  3. Leveraging core R & D capabilities

    • Nano-characterization center & cleanrooms

    • Animal surgery and vivarium

    • Power micro-grid development center

    • Creativity and innovation centers

    • TRIP facilities, Tinkering lab, Cathedral Place (S. Job’s Place)

Endowed Chairs, Professorships & Scholarships

Support RequiredFY 2013FY 2020 Goals
Projected Chairs Needed ($2 mil)616
Endowment (Mkt 12/31/12)$9,536,340$25,000,000
FY13 Distribution$454,877$1,200,000
Projected Professorships ($250k)626
Endowment (Mkt 12/31/12)$2,448,996$8,000,000
FY13 Distribution$115,746$375,000
Projected Scholarship Support  
Endowment (Mkt 12/31/12)$8,985,496$20,000,000
FY13 Distribution$426,959$1,000,000
Other scholarships$306,666$500,000
Scholarships total$733,6251,500,000
Scholarship needs:
  • Recruiting and retaining the best students
Additional scholarship needs:
  • International travel scholarships for undergrad and grad students

  • Supporting undergraduate research and entrepreneurial activities

Virginia Commonwealth University

College of Engineering
601 West Main Street
Box 843068
Richmond, Virginia 23284-3068
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