Physics & Engineering

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Physics & Engineering

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NNU offers an interdisciplinary Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree with concentrations in Computer, Electrical, Mechanical, Agricultural, and Engineering Physics. This rigorous program will prepare you to directly enter the engineering workplace, take the professional engineering licensure exam, and/or attend graduate school.

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Department Chair Name
Dr. Stephen Parke
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Physics & Engineering


NNU's Engineering program will prepare you for a great engineering career, to become a licensed professional engineer, and to succeed in completing a Masters or PhD degree in graduate school.

Graduates from our program have a high FE exam pass rate and job placement rate. Our graduates also have a high grad school acceptance rate at outstanding graduate schools such as Columbia, Georgia Tech, Purdue, Alabama, Vanderbilt, and Carnegie Mellon.

NNU Engineering professors really care about you, both inside and outside of the classroom. They all have years of industry experience to draw on in mentoring you and giving you hands-on training with lab and fab equipment.

Our small program is focused on the highest-quality undergraduate education. We have a faculty to student ratio of 15:1. Grounded in the engineering fundamentals for the first two years, you then concentrate on one engineering discipline in your final two years. At the same time, you benefit from NNU's broad liberal arts educational, spiritual, and residential campus experience. 85% of our engineers graduate in four years, while the national average is five years. For students not starting in calculus, a 5-year Engineering Plan of Study is available for interested students.

See Engineering Course Descriptions

NNU's BSE program has been ABET accredited since its first graduating class in 2014 and has graduated nearly 60 grads through 2018. Its history extends back to 1955 when Dr. Gilbert Ford started the Engineering Physics program, which has over 300 alumni all over the world.

See Alumni Information


NNU offers a Bachelor of Science in Physics for students wishing to pursue graduate studies in physics after graduation. There is also a Bachelor of Arts in Physics for those wanting to get a degree in physics and pursue other studies such as law or medical school. We also provide a high school teaching field in physics, in cooperation with the NNU Education department.

See Physics Course Descriptions

Department Objectives

Graduates from our program have a nearly 100 percent placement rate when applying to graduate schools and joining the work force. Our professors will work closely with you both inside and outside of the classroom and lab, and you'll receive hands-on training with excellent lab and fab equipment in the Thomas Family Health & Science Center.

Program Educational Objectives

Within a few years after graduation, NNU engineering alumni will be:

  1. Practicing engineering with professionalism, integrity, and Christian principles.
  2. Advancing in their career through continuous learning, leadership, and teamwork.
  3. Serving their profession, the community, and God’s creation.
  4. Student Outcomes

By the time of graduation, NNU engineering students will demonstrate:

  1. an ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics.
  2. an ability to apply engineering design to produce solutions that meet specified needs with consideration of public health, safety, and welfare, as well as global, cultural, social, environmental, and economic factors.
  3. an ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences.
  4. an ability to practice engineering with professionalism, ethics, and Christ-like principles, and to make informed judgments, which must consider the impact of engineering solutions in global, economic, environmental, and societal contexts.
  5. an ability to function effectively on a team whose members together provide leadership, create a collaborative and inclusive environment, establish goals, plan tasks, and meet objectives.
  6. an ability to develop and conduct appropriate experimentation, analyze and interpret data, and use engineering judgment to draw conclusions.
  7. an ability to acquire and apply new knowledge as needed, using appropriate learning strategies.


ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, Inc.) is a non-profit, non-governmental organization that is the internationally recognized accreditor of college and university programs, specializing in the disciplines of applied science, computing, engineering, and engineering technology.

NNU's Bachelor of Science in Engineering program has been ABET accredited since it's first graduating class of 2014, meeting ABET’s rigorous standards.

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Program Statistics

Year Enrolled Graduated
2013-14 66 5
2014-15 72 13
2015-16 84 7
2016-17 85 7
2017-18 89 19
2018-19 93 20

NNU Engineering Excellence Scholarship

This scholarship is a $3000 Engineering Excellence add-on to the NNU $14,000 President’s Scholarship for a total of $17,000, renewable for four years (with GPA>3.0) for a total of $68,000. Five of these are awarded to each incoming freshmen class.

The NNU Engineering Excellence Scholarship application deadline is May 1, 2019.

To be eligible to apply for this scholarship, you must:

  • Apply and be admitted to Northwest Nazarene University as a new full-time student
  • Specify Engineering as your intended major
  • Submit to NNU an ACT Math score>30 or SAT Math score>670
  • Participate in a face-to-face interview with Engineering faculty on campus
  • Demonstrate financial need via FAFSA
  • Application Process
  • To apply for this Scholarship, complete and send the application package including:
  • A completed Scholarship Application (found on next page)
  • A letter of recommendation from a teacher/guidance counselor
  • An essay describing your engineering career dreams and plans
  • Participate in a face-to-face interview with Engineering faculty on campus

Email the NNU Engineering Excellence Scholarship Application form, letters, and your essay to Dr. Stephen Parke (, Northwest Nazarene University Engineering Program Director.

Community Outreach

The NNU Engineering department works to spread the love for engineering throughout the community. Recently the department hosted the 2018 VEX Robotics competition for the state of Idaho, bringing together many local schools to exhibit their robots which they had been creating.

Student Projects

The Robotics Vision research group at the Department of Physics and Engineering of Northwest Nazarene University, conducts research on machine vision technologies applicable to automation, robotics, and other areas like agriculture. At present, the team is working on developing a remote sensing system that monitors agricultural field. The system is composed of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) mounted with a multispectral camera that acquires an image of the field from a bird’s eye view.

RockSat - X 2019-2020 — NNU engineering students have launched science experiments of their own design and construction into space for the past nine consecutive years. The next sub-orbital launch will be in August 2020 from NASA Wallops in Virginia. NNU is collaborating with Univ of Hawaii - KCC to design a Virtual Reality 3D imaging "SelfieSat" which will deploy a one meter boom away from the spacecraft and measure RF Tag system as well. The teams will launch their experimental payload on a NASA Terrier Improved Malemute two-stage sub-orbital sounding rocket.