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Undergraduate Advising

The faculty of Mechanical Engineering is dedicated to helping each student attain his or her professional goals. Towards this end, the department has established the following system of advising.

Academic Advising:

1. Freshmen and Sophomores. These lower division students who intend to or are admitted to study engineering will be advised by the COE&IT office of Advising directed by Ms. Bielawski. COE&IT advisers are available in the second floor of the ITE building (ITE203-206) throughout the academic year for advising students concerning the Mechanical Engineering curriculum. All students are required to seek formal advising before being eligible to register for an upcoming semester’s course.

The Advising Session Students in the College of Engineering and Information Technology have daily access to advisors. In ITE 203–206 there are posted walk in hours during those time periods that do not relate to advance registration. In addition, students are always free to contact an advisor to set up an appointment.

During Advance Registration, students must go to the COE&IT Advising Office to set up an appointment to see an advisor prior to registering. Sign up sheets are posted outside ITE 203–206. Students will receive notification on myUMBC of the date and time they will be eligible to register. Before registering, the student must first meet with an advisor. Students can access the date and time through the UMBC home page. Advisor clearance and any special permissions/clearances must be obtained before this date. Advisors expect students to come prepared for the advising session, and students are responsible for becoming acquainted with their advisor. At a minimum, students will have to see their advisor at least twice a year, but students are encouraged to utilize the knowledge and expertise of their advisor throughout the year.

The COE&IT advising staff along with the degree audit report available through myUMBC provide the main guidance on issues related to General Foundation Requirements (GFRs) or (GDPs).

Soon after a student who intends to major in Mechanical Engineering matriculates at UMBC, he/she will be notified of their permanent Mechanical Engineering Faculty Advisor. The Faculty advisor will be available for students to seek advice and have questions answered in regard to their careers as mechanical engineering students as well as their future roles as mechanical engineers. Faculty advisors will notify their advisees of their hours of availability. Students are urged to meet with their advisors to get acquainted and to have questions answered.

2. Upper division students: Those who have completed all their 100 and 200 level Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Engineering courses are advised by a Mechanical Engineering faculty advisor. This faculty member will handle all advising concerning selection, scheduling, and permissions for courses. The advisor will review and discuss progress and options with the student at least once every semester during the advisement period preceding registration for the upcoming semester. Furthermore, the advisor will also discuss with the student his/her particular interests and refer them to other faculty who might be of assistance. The advisor is available by appointment to his/her advisees throughout the semester.

The Undergraduate Coordinator for the Mechanical Engineering Department is available by appointment to deal with extraordinary problems or situations. He/she is also available throughout the semester to deal with students’ issues as they arise. Permissions to take required courses from other institutions are granted only by the Undergraduate Coordinator.

Communications: Information will be distributed between the Department and the students in several ways. Personal communications will be carried out by personal mail/email. General communications normally will be carried out by distributions of written messages and announcements in each Mechanical Engineering class and also posted on doorways and bulletin boards throughout the Engineering/Computer Science Building. All faculty members have an E-mail address which is listed in the Faculty Profiles section of this book. All general messages from the secretary and general messages from the department to students will be also be distributed to students via email.

At least once each semester the Mechanical Engineering Chairman and the Undergraduate Coordinator will hold an open meeting to which all Mechanical Engineering Majors (including Freshmen and Sophomores) are invited. The purpose of this meeting is to discuss general departmental issues, problems and new initiatives. The Mechanical Engineering Faculty are also invited to attend this meeting.

The Department maintains an undergraduate studies bulletin board outside of room ENG 210 with all current announcements and general interest items, including job advertisements.

Faculty Availability: Every faculty member will maintain substantial office hours every week in which students are encouraged to seek help and counseling not only concerning the particular course a faculty member happens to be teaching, but also concerning other academic and professional concerns a student might have. The University maintains a counseling service (see the Undergraduate Catalogue) to which students are encouraged to turn concerning personal problems. Students are encouraged to see the Chairman to help resolve problems that could not be satisfactorily addressed by the student’s faculty advisor or the Undergraduate Coordinator.

In summary, the faculty takes its responsibility to advise and help students very seriously and is enthusiastic about interacting with students. Faculty availability is a hallmark of UMBC.

Miscellaneous: A study and relaxation lounge for engineering students is maintained on the second floor of the ITE building outside the office of advising.