College of Engineering & Applied Science
Dean's Report 2020


I came to the University of Cincinnati in the late summer of 2019 with no idea of what lay ahead of us.

I would have assumed I would be standing in front of a chemical engineering class, hosting in-person faculty and staff meetings, and personally visiting so many of you who have made this college what it is.

Instead, here we are. And yet, I do not think I could feel more optimistic about our college and its future because of what the past year has taught me.  Reviewing our top 10 stories for the year make it clear great work by our faculty, staff, and students never stopped.

We are a resilient, gritty bunch of Bearcats focused on solving problems and helping our students, city, state, country, and world change for the better through discovery, application of science and technology, and - most importantly - personal relationships with each of our students, faculty, staff, alumni, and partners.

—John Weidner
Dean, College of Engineering and Applied Science

Research | Increased Impact

Students pose in an engineering lab (for marketing).

YOU HAVE EXPERIENCED THE BENEFITS OF RESEARCH from the College of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Cincinnati. When you take Benadryl, listen to talk radio, or drop your smartphone and the screen does not shatter, you are experiencing our research.

The impact of our research is rising. With more resources devoted to earning research funding than ever before, you can see from the numbers below that we are on the rise.

Awarded Research 

2019: $15.39 million 
2020: $20.52 million

Awarded Projects

2019: 287 
2020: 307

Co-op | Experiential Learning

Three individuals at their co-op standing in Union Terminal

When you invent something, it just means more to you. We invented cooperative education in 1906. For 114 years, we have perfected it—adjusting to world wars, economic depressions, and pandemics. 

Our college is different in that co-op rotations are mandatory and follow a specific schedule. Students work full-time in jobs at NASA, P&G, and many more. Students in each first-year class will co-op at the same times, returning to campus to share notes, apply their professional knowledge to the classroom and lab, and vice versa.

In a year marked by surprises and challenges, our co-op program grew stronger, with new remote-work opportunities born out of necessity. Our graduates are hired because companies know they are already accustomed to rolling with the many changes of the professional world. 

Inclusive Excellence | Impact

Inclusive excellence is our future as a college. To invest in that future, our Office of Inclusive Excellence and Community Engagement (IECE) offers support to current, prospective, and underrepresented students, as well as outreach to the community, with a special focus on Cincinnati Public Schools.

Numbers are not everything, but here are a few from IECE’s work in the 2019-20 academic year:

  • 651 potential students served in on-campus meetings
  • 1409 potential students engaged in-person and online 
  • 44 events hosted in an academic year cut short
  • 515 CEAS first-year students attended IECE events
  • 268 CEAS upper-class students attended IECE events

Awards | Competitive Excellence

Group of students standing together after winning an award

We take competition seriously and have many results to be proud of.

Environmental Challenge

A team of three chemical and environmental engineering students took home second place for their organic waste management solution in the Air and Waste Management Association’s Environmental Challenge. 

Innovative Energy Design

A student team from majors across CEAS won first place for their innovative distributed energy system design in the U.S. Department of Energy’s inaugural Solar District Cup.

Fluid Power Vehicle Competition

Mechanical Engineering Technology students earned second-place honors in the Fluid Power Vehicle Competition. The team designed and built a two-wheel hydraulic bicycle. 

Net-Zero Energy School

UC students from the Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering and Construction Management received a $10,000 Engineering Education Award from the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying for their design of a net-zero energy school. 

ASCE Distinguished Chapter Award

UC’s student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers earned the ASCE Distinguished Chapter Award for the second consecutive year. 

Student Chapter of the Year

UC’s Construction Student Association was named Associated Builders and Contractors’ national Student Chapter of the Year.

Enrollment | Continued Growth

Three students in Fifth Third Arena

More than ever, the value of a CEAS degree is recognized by prospective students who need professional experience, a great education, and involvement in student groups, clubs and activities. The undergraduate enrollment of the college has grown significantly and continues to do so. Especially in uncertain times, the certainty of a CEAS degree drives our growth.

This growth does not just happen. Our enrollment team hosted 1,200 prospective students on tours or open houses, visited 24 high schools, attended 50 college fairs, and organized 30 events for admitted students.

  • 2016: 4,641 
  • 2017: 4,888 
  • 2018: 4,994 
  • 2019: 5,041 
  • 2020: 5,249

Alumni | Powerful Impact

Alumni are different here too. Our alumni stay very connected to the college for many reasons, including our strong ties to industry and research.

There are 41,321 CEAS alumni living in 84 countries and all 50 states. Between speaking to classes, creating co-ops at their businesses, and recruiting prospective students.

Total alumni volunteer hours with the college:

  • 2018: 265 hours
  • 2019: 273 hours
  • 2020: 306 hours

Our College | In the News


UC researchers build data network to minimize flooding impact

December 2, 2020

A team of University of Cincinnati researchers is working to predict how flooding will impact cities and how to mitigate the resulting economic and human suffering. With the backing of a $5 million grant from the National Science Foundation, UC associate professor of environmental engineering Lilit Yeghiazarian is leading phase two of the research project with a multidisciplinary team to create the Urban Flooding Open Knowledge Network. The network merges data that can provide reliable flood-related information to anyone who needs it.


UC professor works to create a smartphone COVID-19 test

October 30, 2020

Aashish Priye, a University of Cincinnati assistant professor of chemical engineering, and the UC students in his lab are exploring a smartphone-based DNA analyzer that could allow a user to test themselves at home for COVID-19..


UC professor develops a new way to manufacture alloys

October 28, 2020

Murali Sundaram, a University of Cincinnati professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, has developed a novel electrochemical additive manufacturing process to create a new class of high entropy alloys.


WVXU: Cincinnati-designed ventilators on their way to Brazil and...

July 13, 2020

WVXU reports on Venti-Now, a Cincinnati-based nonprofit that was launched in response to the pandemic by two former P&G scientists. UC Health and University of Cincinnati collaborated with Venti-Now as they set out to make an affordable and simple ventilator for countries in need.

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