Olympic College-Washington State University Mechanical Engineering
Olympic College has always been the affordable and convenient option for furthering one’s education in Kitsap County allowing residents to start their educational career, hone a skill or take a class for fun. Now more than ever, there is a need for more educational and developmental programs, mainly baccalaureate options. These four year degrees are vital to the county and will provide more employment opportunities as well as boost the economy and the community. The demand of Science Technology Engineering and Mathematic (STEM) based careers are at an all-time high especially in Washington and Kitsap. Olympic College wants its residents to be at the top of an essential field.
Engineering is an exciting field with good pay and job satisfaction. While it is a challenging field and requires four years of intensive study, the program is rewarding and enriching. The field of engineering is diverse with many specializations. Students are expected to specialize in a particular concentration of engineering as they will be tested on their specialization in the Fundamentals of Engineering exam which all students have to pass in order to start their career. Olympic College does an exceptional job in preparing its Engineering students and the mission of the program is to “graduate students who are prepared to excel in any four-year Engineering program in the country.”
With a desire to bring a four-year program closer to home, the Olympic College Engineering faculty developed a key partnership with Washington State University in 2010. This partnership forged the development of an articulation from OC’s Engineering program through Washington State University’s Mechanical Engineering program. This was a significant step for the College, Bremerton and Kitsap County, truly setting the bar high for what is to come.
“This is an exciting opportunity. Olympic College and WSU are offering a new degree to the community which will help residents get a four-year education locally rather than having to go across the bridge or across the water. It also means regional employers, such as the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, can draw from a local pool of candidates with this high demand engineering degree,” said Dr. David Mitchell, President of Olympic College.
In June 2013, the newly remodeled 10,000-square-foot engineering lab was opened. It is housed in what was once the College’s Automotive building. It is fully equipped with a wind tunnel, a materials testing lab, a thermal properties and fluid dynamics lab, two robots, state-of-the art computer labs and an internal combustion engine donated by Boeing. These features along with the advanced engineering lab allow Olympic College’s Mechanical Engineering students to complete their degrees in Bremerton. Students no longer have to make the trek to Pullman or give up jobs and family life to complete their degree.