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Carolina engineering. Open to your ingenuity.

Beginning fall 2024: New UNC major in Applied Sciences

Do the big and small problems that you encounter in the world stir your curiosity? If so, take a closer look at UNC-Chapel Hill’s new major in applied sciences, with tracks in materials engineering and environmental engineering.

As a Carolina engineering student, you’ll build the fundamentals to become a modern problem solver. It’s your chance to explore and work with the latest future-focused solutions, materials and technologies of today—while building the fundamentals you’ll need to one day design possibilities not yet imagined. And because you’ll earn this degree while immersed in the University’s wider liberal arts environment, you gain more than excellent technical skills. You’ll also hone the creative, critical thinking and analytical skills you need to address complicated challenges that are both pressing and practical.

This program is unique collaboration between the Department of Applied Physical Sciences (APS) in the College of Arts and Sciences and the Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering (ESE) in the Gillings School of Global Public Health. APS is the home department for the major and all students will take their foundational engineering classes in APS. For the upper level engineering tracks, students in the materials engineering track will take classes in APS, and students in the Environmental Engineering track will take classes in ESE.

On the edge of ‘new’ and ‘next’

The Applied Sciences major will prepare you to push the edge of industrial and environmental progress—with state-of-the-art materials, emerging technologies, and ahead-of-their-time solutions. As a first-year student starting at Carolina in fall 2024, you can choose to pursue a bachelor’s of science degree in applied sciences that will offer two tracks of study:
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Materials Engineering Track

Build expertise in materials—the cornerstone of engineering innovation. Think about it. Everything is made of something. In order to build, you must have something to build with—which means that materials are the innovative cornerstone of engineering. Industry relies on materials engineers to develop the building blocks of tomorrow: materials with extraordinary properties—heat resistant, ultra-thin, ultra-durable, and sustainable—that perform better and cost less. The materials engineering track will get your mind and hands working on future-focused materials and technologies, like those used for next-generation energy storage, polymer membranes for clean water, green plastics, and biomedical devices. For this track, students will take five upper-level courses in the Department of Applied Physical Sciences. See more information on the curriculum page.
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Environmental Engineering Track

Innovate for the environment—the defining issue of our global future. Environmental change is the single greatest global challenge of our lifetime. Current and future generations depend on our ability to design innovative answers. With the environmental engineering track, you can start making a difference by working on technologies and designing solutions for air pollution, water quality, renewable energy, resource conservation, and environmental exposures and contaminations. For this track, students will take five upper-level courses in the Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering. See more information on the curriculum page.