Donald P. Shiley School of Engineering

Sharon A. Jones, Ph.D., P.E., dean

Tammy VanDeGrift, Ph.D., associate dean

Faculty: Albright, Crenshaw, Dillon, Doughty, Hoffbeck, A. Inan, M. Inan, Jones, Kennedy, Khan, Kuhn, Lu, Lulay, Male, Murty, Nuxoll, Osterberg, Schenberger, Schulz, Takallou, VanDeGrift, Vegdahl, Ward, Yamayee


Engineering is a dynamic and creative profession dedicated to achieving the technological aims of society and helping humankind progress to a better standard of living and well-being. It is a profession in which the knowledge of natural sciences and mathematics is applied with judgement to develop ways to utilize, economically and with concern for the environment and society, the materials and forces of nature for the benefit of humankind. Engineers enjoy a unique professional satisfaction. They can usually point to tangible evidence of their efforts. For example, every skyscraper, bridge, television set, VCR, computer, robot, airplane, or automobile is a lasting testimonial to the engineers responsible for its design and creation.


The Donald P. Shiley School of Engineering continues its progress within the framework of the University of Portland mission.

The Donald P. Shiley School of Engineering is committed to providing the best possible engineering education to its students, thus enabling the students to become competent practicing engineers and computer scientists. The programs also provide a base for both graduate study and lifelong learning in support of evolving career objectives. These objectives include being informed, effective, and responsible participants in the engineering profession and society. The school endeavors to develop qualities that are essential for the practice of engineering and beneficial service to the community. These qualities include a knowledge of engineering principles, the ability to apply those principles to solve problems, and the development of professional, personal, and social values.

The school provides a personalized and caring learning environment for its students, enhanced by high quality faculty, staff, facilities, and equipment. The environment includes exceptional instruction; frequent opportunities for relevant laboratory experience; practice of communication and teamwork skills; the challenge of undertaking realistic engineering projects; and the personal attention, guidance, and example of faculty and administrators. This environment is also enhanced by students who have an aptitude and motivation for engineering study, as well as general intellectual curiosity.

Educational Objectives

The primary goal of the Shiley School of Engineering is to provide an excellent engineering and computer science education consistent with the mission, goals, and objectives of the University of Portland as articulated in the University Bulletin . To achieve this goal, the engineering school has established a set of program educational objectives. These objectives are listed next.

Program Educational Objectives:

The Shiley School of Engineering prepares graduates who will:

  1. Be successful as practicing professionals in diverse career paths or in graduate school.
  2. Distinguish themselves in breadth of perspective and the ability to solve complex problems.
  3. Be effective communicators and team members, with many assuming leadership roles.
  4. Be active in their profession and participate in continuing education opportunities to foster personal and organizational growth.
  5. Demonstrate a concern for justice, ethical behavior, and societal improvement through participation in professional and civic organizations.

The Shiley School of Engineering offers both undergraduate and graduate degree programs. In the undergraduate studies, the curriculum progresses from mathematics and science courses in the first year to engineering science topics in the sophomore year. Junior and senior year studies concentrate more on the analysis, design, and synthesis aspects of the topics learned in the first two years. This process of synthesis culminates in the capstone design projects in the senior year. Here, students embark on an in-depth study of a particular device, structure, or system and design it from the ground up using the knowledge they have gained in previous years.

Professional Societies

Student chapters of the following professional societies currently are active on campus:

American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)

American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)


Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)

Engineers Without Borders—USA

Engineering World Health

Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)

Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE)

Society of Women Engineers (SWE)

All students are encouraged to join organizations of interest to them.

The University of Portland Oregon Gamma Chapter of Tau Beta Pi, the national engineering honor society, offers admission to the top upper-division engineering students.

Community College Transfers

Transfers from community colleges are accepted regardless of whether they have completed a course of study or not. Students from engineering transfer programs can generally complete the B.S. degree requirements with no loss of time. Students who are interested in transferring to the University are encouraged to seek individual counseling both at their community college and at the University. Discussions at the University can be used both to develop a suitable academic plan and to develop a suitable financial plan.

Prospective transfer students are strongly urged to counsel at the University at least one semester before they plan to transfer. In this way potential deficiencies can be spotted. Deficiencies can cause sequencing problems and delay graduation. In some cases students can save a full semester by taking a key course in the summer preceding planned entry.