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College of Engineering and Computer Science Graduate Programs Climb in the U.S. News Rankings

Computer science, electrical engineering and aerospace engineering all rose in the 2025 rankings.
By: Marisa Ramiccio | June 18, 2024

The UCF College of Engineering and Computer Science has ranked within the top 75 colleges and universities in the country on the U.S. News and World Report list of Best Engineering Schools for the eighth consecutive year. CECS is listed at No. 73 this year, and ranks at No. 45 among public universities and No. 2 in the State of Florida.

“CECS aspires to become a top 25 college of engineering among public schools in the nation by 2032,” says Ali Gordon, the associate dean of graduate affairs for CECS. “With this new round of rankings, CECS placed five of its graduate programs within the top 35 – a first for the college. A number of graduate programs made significant strides in becoming the best that the State of Florida has to offer. These advances are the returns on investment that that state, industry, funding agencies and UCF have made in the college.”

Ten of the college’s graduate programs also ranked on the U.S. News and World Report lists this year.

Charged to Empower and Serve

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering takes its tagline, “Charged to Empower and Serve,” seriously. Over the past year, the department has developed a number of fellowship and scholarship opportunities for students, and implemented several groundbreaking research projects, including Assistant Professor Kenle Chen’s efforts to make wireless communication more energy efficient.

The hard work of the faculty, students and alumni has paid off as the electrical engineering and computer engineering graduate programs both jumped in the U.S. News and World Report rankings. Computer engineering climbed seven spots, from No. 57 to No. 50, while electrical engineering rose five spots, from No. 58 to No. 53. Out of public schools in the U.S., computer engineering ranks at No. 27 while electrical engineering ranks at No. 29.

“The electrical and computer engineering department is steadfast in its commitment to excellence, with a sharp focus on enhancing the experiences of our students and industrial partners,” says Professor Reza Abdolvand, the department chair. “Their satisfaction fuels our passion and drives us forward. It’s incredibly gratifying to receive acknowledgment from our peers, affirming that we are on the right path. Congratulations to our dedicated faculty and staff for this well-deserved recognition. Our heartfelt thanks go to the college and university leadership, whose support is crucial as we strive toward our noble goals.”

Soaring to New Heights

Aerospace engineering faculty, alumni and students have soared to new heights over this past year, so it’s no surprise that the graduate program has climbed in the ranks for the second consecutive year, moving from No. 50 to No. 47. The program ranks at No. 32 out of U.S. public schools. With out-of-this-world research – such as Professor Kareem Ahmed’s hypersonic engine that can morph during flight to optimize performance and alumna Marley Albright’s quest to find cleaner alternatives to the toxic propellant used in NASA rovers – it’s no wonder that the aerospace engineering program has cracked the top 50 again.

“For many years, the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering had a cadre of exceptional aerospace engineering scholars, and when we established the aerospace Ph.D. program, we knew it would be a success,” says Professor Yoav Peles, chair of the department. “What surprised me the most was the instant recognition of the quality of the program by our peers in the nation, the exceptionally strong growth of Ph.D. student enrollment and the quality of students we attract. I’m looking forward to a bright future in which UCF’s aerospace program is in the top 10 in the U.S.”

The mechanical engineering graduate program also moved up in the rankings this year to No. 70 and No. 42 out of public schools in the U.S., further highlighting the strengths of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. Over this past year alone, Professor Tuhin Das received a $3 million grant to develop software for offshore wind turbines, and mechanical engineering alumnus Raghu Kancherla ’19PhD received an industry award for his contributions to the field of combustion.

Standing Out in the State of Florida

Several of UCF’s engineering graduate programs stand out from those offered at other Florida colleges and universities. The following programs rank as No. 2 in the state:

  • Industrial Engineering
  • Computer Engineering
  • Materials Science and Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science

UCF’s aerospace engineering and environmental engineering programs rank as third in state for their respective categories. Below is the full list of UCF engineering rankings from U.S. News and World Report:

  • Industrial Engineering – No. 43
  • Aerospace Engineering – No. 47
  • Computer Engineering – No. 50
  • Materials Science and Engineering – No. 52
  • Electrical Engineering – No. 53
  • Civil Engineering – No. 69
  • Mechanical Engineering – No. 70
  • Computer Science – No. 70
  • Overall – No. 73
  • Environmental Engineering – No. 77
  • Biomedical Engineering – No. 120