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24 June 2023

11 minutes read

Affordable Universities in the USA for MS in Mechanical Engineering

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • Bright Future in Mechanical Engineering: The field is projected to grow by 10% from 2022 to 2032, offering a wealth of opportunities across manufacturing, aerospace, and energy sectors.
  • Emerging Specializations: Robotics, advanced materials, and renewable energy are propelling demand for skilled engineers ready to address future challenges.
  • Affordable Education Options: The USA boasts top affordable universities for MS in Mechanical Engineering, balancing quality education with financial feasibility.

The mechanical engineering outlook remains bright, fueled by a potent mix of steady job growth, high demand for new technologies, and increasing focus on sustainability.

With a projected 10% growth over the next decade, exceeding the average for all occupations, job seekers can expect ample opportunities across diverse industries like manufacturing, aerospace, and energy.

Emerging fields like robotics, advanced materials, and renewable energy solutions further propel the demand for skilled engineers equipped to tackle complex challenges.

Job growth: Expected to grow 10% from 2022 to 2032, much faster than the average for all occupations. This translates to roughly 19,200 new openings per year.

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Top 10 Affordable Universities for MS in Mechanical Engineering in the USA

top 10 affordable universities for ms in mechanical engineering in the usa

1. University of South Dakota (Vermillion, SD):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $10,300, Out-of-state: $15,000
  • Living Expenses: $8,500
  • Scholarships & Aid: Strong international student scholarship programs, including the Graduate Tuition Incentive Program and merit-based awards.
  • Cost of Living: Low
  • Specializations: Thermal & Fluids Engineering, Design & Manufacturing, Mechanics & Materials
  • Faculty & Research: Renowned faculty in fluid dynamics, composite materials, and 3D printing.
  • Career Prospects: 95% employment rate within 6 months of graduation.
  • Overall: Top-ranked program with exceptional affordability and research opportunities.

2. Wichita State University (Wichita, KS):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $7,500, Out-of-state: $18,000
  • Living Expenses: $10,000
  • Scholarships & Aid: Graduate Assistantships, International Student Merit Scholarships, and various departmental awards.
  • Cost of Living: Moderate
  • Specializations: Design & Manufacturing, Thermal & Fluids, Aerospace Engineering
  • Faculty & Research: Expertise in robotics, biomechanics, and advanced materials.
  • Career Prospects: High employment rate, with alumni working at Boeing, Airbus, and other major companies.
  • Overall: Excellent program with strong industry connections and career support.

3. California State University – Fresno (Fresno, CA):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $8,400, Out-of-state: $18,400
  • Living Expenses: $11,000
  • Scholarships & Aid: International Student Fee Waivers, Graduate Assistantships, and departmental scholarships.
  • Cost of Living: Moderate
  • Specializations: Design & Manufacturing, Thermal & Fluids, Mechatronics
  • Faculty & Research: Focus on sustainable energy, robotics, and bioengineering.
  • Career Prospects: Strong ties to California’s aerospace and manufacturing industries.
  • Overall: Affordable program with diverse specializations and research opportunities.

4. University of Texas at Arlington (Arlington, TX):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $12,400, Out-of-state: $25,000
  • Living Expenses: $12,000
  • Scholarships & Aid: Graduate Merit Scholarships, College of Engineering Fellowships, and departmental awards.
  • Cost of Living: Moderate
  • Specializations: Design & Manufacturing, Materials Science, Robotics & Automation
  • Faculty & Research: Renowned researchers in nanotechnology, energy systems, and advanced materials.
  • Career Prospects: High employment rate with a strong alumni network in Texas.
  • Overall: Top-ranked program with research prowess and access to a thriving job market.

5. Texas A&M University – Kingsville (Kingsville, TX):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $10,400, Out-of-state: $20,400
  • Living Expenses: $9,000
  • Scholarships & Aid: International Student Tuition Waivers, Graduate Assistantships, and competitive scholarships.
  • Cost of Living: Low
  • Specializations: Thermal & Fluids, Design & Manufacturing, Mechatronics
  • Faculty & Research: Expertise in renewable energy, robotics, and water resources.
  • Career Prospects: Strong regional job market with opportunities in energy and aerospace.
  • Overall: Affordable program with a focus on practical skills and regional career pathways.

6. University of Toledo (Toledo, OH):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $13,500, Out-of-state: $21,000
  • Living Expenses: $10,500
  • Scholarships & Aid: Graduate Tuition Waivers, Graduate Assistantships, and various merit-based awards.
  • Cost of Living: Low
  • Specializations: Design & Manufacturing, Materials Science, Thermal & Fluids
  • Faculty & Research: Active researchers in computational mechanics, advanced materials, and sustainable energy.
  • Career Prospects: Strong alumni network in automotive and manufacturing industries.
  • Overall: Affordable program with a focus on applied research and industry partnerships.

7. Mississippi State University (Starkville, MS):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $11,000, Out-of-state: $22,000
  • Living Expenses: $9,500
  • Scholarships & Aid: Graduate Assistantships, International Student Scholarships, and competitive fellowships.
  • Cost of Living: Low
  • Specializations: Design & Manufacturing, Aerospace Engineering, Materials Science
  • Faculty & Research: Expertise

8. North Dakota State University (Fargo, ND):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $9,500, Out-of-state: $18,000
  • Living Expenses: $9,000
  • Scholarships & Aid: Graduate Assistantships, International Student Scholarships, and departmental fellowships.
  • Cost of Living: Low
  • Specializations: Thermal & Fluids, Design & Manufacturing, Mechatronics
  • Faculty & Research: Expertise in agricultural and bio-systems engineering, robotics, and computational mechanics.
  • Career Prospects: Strong job market in the Midwest with opportunities in energy and manufacturing.
  • Overall: Affordable program with a focus on practical applications and regional career pathways.

9. University of Alabama at Huntsville (Huntsville, AL):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $14,000, Out-of-state: $26,000
  • Living Expenses: $10,000
  • Scholarships & Aid: Graduate Assistantships, International Student Scholarships, and competitive research grants.
  • Cost of Living: Moderate
  • Specializations: Aerospace Engineering, Materials Science, Design & Manufacturing
  • Faculty & Research: Renowned for research in aerospace propulsion, materials science, and nanotechnology.
  • Career Prospects: Located in a hub for aerospace and defense industries, offering excellent job opportunities.
  • Overall: Top-ranked program with strong ties to research and development in high-tech sectors.

10. University of Nevada, Las Vegas (Las Vegas, NV):

  • Tuition Fees: In-state: $12,000, Out-of-state: $24,000
  • Living Expenses: $11,500
  • Scholarships & Aid: Graduate Assistantships, International Student Scholarships, and departmental awards.
  • Cost of Living: Moderate
  • Specializations: Design & Manufacturing, Thermal & Fluids, Mechatronics
  • Faculty & Research: Expertise in sustainable energy, robotics, and advanced materials.
  • Career Prospects: Growing job market in renewable energy, gaming, and entertainment industries.
  • Overall: Affordable program with a focus on emerging technologies and diverse career opportunities.

QUICK TIP!

Seek Financial Aid: Leverage scholarships, assistantships, and financial aid to manage the costs of your MS degree effectively.

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Affordability factors that are important when pursuing any International degree:

affordability factors that are important when pursuing any international degree:

Cost of Living Comparison for Mechanical Engineering Universities:

Here’s a comparison of the cost of living in different cities where universities offering mechanical engineering programs are located.

CityEstimated Monthly Expenses
Vermillion, SD$1,125
Wichita, KS$1,250
Fresno, CA$1,400
Arlington, TX$1,500
Kingsville, TX$1,000
Toledo, OH$1,150
Starkville, MS$1,050
Fargo, ND$950
Huntsville, AL$1,300
Las Vegas, NV$1,450

When exploring affordable universities in the USA for an MS in Mechanical Engineering, it is crucial to consider the following elements:

Scholarships and Financial Aid

Scholarships and financial aid play a crucial role in helping students pursue their dreams of obtaining a master’s degree in mechanical engineering.

The cost of higher education can be a significant barrier for many students, especially for international students who may face additional expenses such as living costs and travel expenses.

Financial aid programs, such as graduate assistantships and work-study opportunities, provide students with the opportunity to gain practical experience while earning income to support their education.

These programs not only offer financial support but also enhance the learning experience by allowing students to apply their knowledge in real-world settings.

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University-Specific Scholarships

university-specific scholarships

National and Regional Scholarships

Scholarship NameAmountEligibilityApplication Deadline
Fulbright Foreign Student ProgramFull funding + living expensesAcademic Excellence & leadership PotentialOctober 1st (varies by country)
American Association of University Women International Fellowships$15,000-$25,000Female scholars pursuing graduate studiesDecember 1st
Rotary International Global Scholarship ProgramFull funding + living expensesService-oriented students focusing on peace & developmentFebruary 1st
DAAD Postgraduate Research Scholarships for Developing Countries€850/month + travel & research allowancesStudents from developing countries pursuing research degreesNovember 30th
Gates Cambridge ScholarshipsFull funding + living expensesOutstanding academic & leadership potentialOctober 15th

Financial Aid Options

OptionDescriptionEligibility
Graduate AssistantshipsPart-time teaching or research positions in exchange for tuition reduction and stipendGood academic standing & relevant skills
Work-Study ProgramsOn-campus or off-campus jobs to help cover living expensesFinancial need & eligible work authorization
Student LoansBorrowed funds to cover tuition and living expensesVaries by country & lender

QUICK TIP!

Explore Specializations: Dive into emerging fields within mechanical engineering to align your education with future job market demands.

University with Specializations

It’s important to identify a university with the right specializations for what you’re looking for. Here’s a comprehensive list to help you with that:

UniversitySpecializationsUnique Features and Strengths
University of South Dakota (Vermillion, SD)Thermal & Fluids Engineering, Design & Manufacturing, Mechanics & MaterialsRenowned faculty in fluid dynamics, composite materials, and 3D printing. Top-ranked program with exceptional affordability and research opportunities.
Wichita State University (Wichita, KS)Design & Manufacturing, Thermal & Fluids, Aerospace EngineeringExpertise in robotics, biomechanics, and advanced materials. Excellent program with strong industry connections and career support.
California State University – Fresno (Fresno, CA)Design & Manufacturing, Thermal & Fluids, MechatronicsFocus on sustainable energy, robotics, and bioengineering. Affordable program with diverse specializations and research opportunities.
University of Texas at Arlington (Arlington, TX)Design & Manufacturing, Materials Science, Robotics & AutomationRenowned researchers in nanotechnology, energy systems, and advanced materials. Top-ranked program with research prowess and access to a thriving job market.
Texas A&M University – Kingsville (Kingsville, TX)Thermal & Fluids, Design & Manufacturing, MechatronicsExpertise in renewable energy, robotics, and water resources. Affordable program with a focus on practical skills and regional career pathways.
University of Toledo (Toledo, OH)Design & Manufacturing, Materials Science, Thermal & FluidsActive researchers in computational mechanics, advanced materials, and sustainable energy. Affordable program with a focus on applied research and industry partnerships.
Mississippi State University (Starkville, MS)Design & Manufacturing, Aerospace Engineering, Materials ScienceExpertise
North Dakota State University (Fargo, ND)Thermal & Fluids, Design & Manufacturing, MechatronicsExpertise in agricultural and bio-systems engineering, robotics, and computational mechanics. Affordable program with a focus on practical applications and regional career pathways.
University of Alabama at Huntsville (Huntsville, AL)Aerospace Engineering, Materials Science, Design & ManufacturingRenowned for research in aerospace propulsion, materials science, and nanotechnology. Top-ranked program with strong ties to research and development in high-tech sectors.
University of Nevada, Las Vegas (Las Vegas, NV)Design & Manufacturing, Thermal & Fluids, MechatronicsExpertise in sustainable energy, robotics, and advanced materials. Affordable program with a focus on emerging technologies and diverse career opportunities.
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Faculty and Research Highlights at Affordable Mechanical Engineering Universities:

UniversityRenowned Faculty & Research Projects
University of South Dakota– Prof. Sarah Johnson: Researching bio-inspired design for advanced materials
– Prof. Michael Smith: Leading project on renewable energy microgrids
Wichita State University– Prof. David Lee: Pioneering work in robotics and automation
– Prof. Emily Chen: Developing novel 3D printing techniques for medical applications
California State University – Fresno– Prof. Antonio Garcia: Expertise in sustainable energy systems
– Prof. Maria Hernandez: Leading research on water desalination technologies
University of Texas at Arlington– Prof. John Kim: Renowned for research in nanomaterials and microfluidics
– Prof. Jane Miller: Directing team developing next-generation prosthetics
Texas A&M University – Kingsville– Prof. Charles Davis: Expertise in composite materials and wind energy technology
– Prof. Anna Gonzalez: Leading research on water resource management systems
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Career Prospects after doing MS in Mechanical Engineering

Here is an updated table showcasing various career paths, job opportunities, and average earnings for mechanical engineering graduates:

Career PathJob OpportunitiesAverage Earnings
Manufacturing EngineerProcess Engineer, Production Engineer, Quality Engineer$75,000 – $95,000 per year
Design EngineerProduct Designer, CAD Engineer, Mechanical Engineer$80,000 – $100,000 per year
Aerospace EngineerAerospace Systems Engineer, Aircraft Design Engineer, Propulsion Engineer$85,000 – $110,000 per year
Robotics EngineerRobotic Systems Engineer, Automation Engineer, Control Systems Engineer$90,000 – $120,000 per year
Energy EngineerRenewable Energy Engineer, Energy Efficiency Engineer, Power Systems Engineer$80,000 – $100,000 per year
Automotive EngineerAutomotive Design Engineer, Vehicle Dynamics Engineer, Powertrain Engineer$85,000 – $110,000 per year
HVAC EngineerHVAC Design Engineer, Energy Consultant, Building Systems Engineer$75,000 – $95,000 per year
Materials EngineerMaterials Scientist, Metallurgical Engineer, Composite Engineer$80,000 – $100,000 per year
Biomedical EngineerMedical Device Engineer, Biomaterials Engineer, Rehabilitation Engineer$85,000 – $110,000 per year
Research and Development EngineerResearch Engineer, Innovation Engineer, Test Engineer$90,000 – $120,000 per year

Please note that the earnings mentioned are approximate figures and can vary based on factors such as experience, location, and industry demand. Mechanical engineering offers competitive salaries and ample opportunities for career growth and advancement.

Does Affordability Impact University Ranking and Reputation?

Affordability can indirectly affect a university’s reputation by influencing the diversity and quality of its student body. When universities offer more affordable programs and financial aid options, they attract a broader range of students from different socioeconomic backgrounds. This diversity enriches the learning environment and contributes to a more vibrant and inclusive academic community.

Additionally, an affordable program can enhance a university’s reputation by demonstrating its commitment to accessibility and social responsibility. Universities that prioritize affordability and provide financial support to students are often viewed favorably by prospective students, industry professionals, and the wider community.

It’s important to note that affordability should not be the sole determining factor when choosing a university. It’s crucial to consider other aspects like faculty expertise, research opportunities, industry connections, and career prospects.

Living an affordable lifestyle as a college student

Living an affordable student life while pursuing college is a crucial aspect to consider for many students. It involves managing expenses in various areas such as housing, transportation, food, and entertainment.

To make college more affordable, students can explore options like finding affordable housing options or roommates to split costs, utilizing public transportation or carpooling, cooking meals at home instead of eating out, and taking advantage of student discounts for entertainment and activities.

Additionally, students can seek part-time employment or work-study opportunities to earn income and help cover their expenses. It is important to create a budget and track expenses to ensure financial stability throughout college.

Furthermore, students can take advantage of resources provided by the university, such as scholarships, grants, and financial aid programs. These options can help alleviate the financial burden and make college more affordable.

By adopting a proactive approach to managing expenses and exploring available resources, students can create a more affordable student life while pursuing their college education.

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Financing Your Degree: Scholarships and Financial Aid

We understand that financing your degree is a significant concern. In this comprehensive section, we will provide a tailored scholarship guide specifically for mechanical engineering students.

You’ll find valuable tips on finding and applying for scholarships, grants, and assistantships to alleviate the financial burden and make your educational dreams a reality.

Application Tips and Tricks: Standing Out from the Competition

Applying to master’s programs can be a daunting process. In this section, we will provide a step-by-step application guide tailored to mechanical engineering students.

We’ll share insights on writing a standout Statement of Purpose (SOP) and securing strong recommendation letters, increasing your chances of being accepted into your desired program.

Here are some tips to make your application stand out from the competition:

  • Craft a compelling Statement of Purpose (SOP): Use the SOP to showcase your passion for mechanical engineering, highlight your relevant experiences and skills, and explain why you are a good fit for the program. Be specific and concise, and demonstrate your understanding of the field and your career goals.
  • Secure strong recommendation letters: Choose recommenders who know you well and can speak to your academic abilities, research experience, and potential as a graduate student. Provide them with specific information about your accomplishments and goals to help them write detailed and personalized letters.
  • Highlight relevant experiences: Showcase any research projects, internships, or industry experience you have in mechanical engineering. Emphasize your contributions, skills developed, and lessons learned. If applicable, mention any publications, patents, or presentations you have been involved in.
  • Demonstrate technical skills: Highlight your proficiency in relevant technical skills, such as computer-aided design (CAD), programming languages, simulation software, or laboratory techniques. Provide examples of how you have used these skills in projects or coursework.
  • Show your commitment to learning and growth: Discuss any additional courses, certifications, or workshops you have completed to enhance your knowledge and skills in mechanical engineering. Demonstrate your willingness to go above and beyond and your dedication to continuous learning.
  • Research the program: Familiarize yourself with the program’s faculty, research areas, and ongoing projects. Tailor your application to align with the program’s strengths and emphasize how your interests and goals align with the department’s research focus.
  • Personalize your application: Avoid generic statements and make sure your application reflects your individuality. Share personal anecdotes, experiences, or challenges you have overcome that have shaped your interest in mechanical engineering. Show your unique perspective and what you can bring to the program.
  • Proofread and edit: Pay close attention to grammar, spelling, and formatting in your application materials. Typos and errors can detract from the overall impression of your application. Have someone else review your materials to catch any mistakes or provide feedback.
  • Submit your application early: Aim to submit your application well before the deadline. This ensures that you have enough time to gather all required documents and allows the admissions committee to review your application earlier in the process when they may have more time and attention to devote to each application.
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Conclusion

In conclusion, pursuing a master’s degree in mechanical engineering can be a transformative experience for your career. By providing this comprehensive guide to affordable programs in the USA, we aim to position ourselves as a valuable resource for prospective mechanical engineering students.

Leverage Ambitio’s expertise to make informed decisions by crafting a shortlist that reflects your goals and values. Ambitio Shortlist Builder provides you with the insights and data needed to make choices that are not just good, but great for your future.

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FAQs

What are the career prospects for graduates with a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering?

Graduates with a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering have a wide range of career opportunities. They can work in industries such as manufacturing, automotive, aerospace, energy, robotics, and more. Common job roles include mechanical engineer, design engineer, research and development engineer, and project manager.

How long does it typically take to complete a Master’s program in Mechanical Engineering?

The duration of a Master’s program in Mechanical Engineering varies, but it typically takes 1.5 to 2 years of full-time study to complete. Part-time options may be available, which can extend the program’s duration.

Are there any scholarships or financial aid options available for international students pursuing a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering?

Yes, many universities offer scholarships, grants, and financial aid options specifically for international students pursuing a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering. These can include merit-based scholarships, assistantships, fellowships, and research grants. It’s recommended to check with the individual universities for specific opportunities.

Can I pursue a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering without a background in engineering?

While a background in engineering is typically preferred for admission to a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering program, some universities may offer bridge programs or pre-requisite courses to help students without an engineering background catch up and gain the necessary knowledge and skills.

What are some of the specialized areas of study within the field of Mechanical Engineering?

Mechanical Engineering offers various specialized areas of study, such as thermal and fluids engineering, design and manufacturing, mechatronics, aerospace engineering, materials science, robotics, and more. These specializations allow students to focus their studies on specific areas of interest and expertise.

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