Industrial Engineering

Engineering Hall

What is Industrial Engineering?

Industrial engineers help improve the productivity of all types of companies by designing tasks, systems, and products which are more efficient, more safe, more profitable, and make better use of resources. There are more than 200,000 industrial engineers working in the United States—making it one of the five largest engineering disciplines. Businesses employing industrial engineers vary widely and include all types of manufacturing as well as hospitals, utilities, retail companies, and software development companies. Industrial engineering students at UW-Platteville may work with the advisor and design an elective sequence to meet career goals. Students may also complete a minor in a field such as business administration, computer science, a foreign language, mathematics, or psychology.

Why Choose Industrial Engineering?

Career Potential

The average starting salary for Industrial Engineers for University of Wisconsin graduates was $60,025. This is one of the highest average starting salaries of the engineering majors offered at UW-Platteville.

The job titles of recent IE graduates include industrial engineer, project engineer, quality engineer, manufacturing engineer, project manager, process engineer, and continuous improvement engineer.  Many IE alumni have the opportunity to take on managerial responsibility within the first three years of their careers.  Experienced UW-Platteville IE alumni have job titles including president, director of operations, and director of global supply chain.  In addition, several IE alumni have started their own companies.

Demand for industrial engineers continues to be strong.  In recent semesters, 90 percent of the IE graduates seeking employment found full-time positions in the field.  Since 1986, over 96 percent of the students graduating from UW-Platteville with an industrial engineering degree found full-time employment in the field within a few months of graduation.

Companies which employ recent IE graduates include John Deere, Hormel, Frito-Lay, Generac, and General Electric.  About 67 percent of the IE alumni are working in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, or Iowa.  There are IE alumni working throughout the country and abroad.

High Quality Education

The average industrial engineering class has about 18 students and there are fewer than 25 IE majors for each faculty member.  Within the curriculum are several opportunities for student teams to work on design projects sponsored by area companies providing students with hands-on experience.  IE students may also gain work experience through the co-op/internship program.

At UW-Platteville, industrial engineering students are well prepared by the curriculum to pass the national Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam and have a rate of passing the exam far exceeding the national average for industrial engineers. Passing this exam is the first step in becoming a licensed professional engineer.

Students are encouraged to be active participants in the UW-Platteville student chapter of the Institute of Industrial Engineers (IIE). Activities sponsored by IIE last year included plant tours, guest speakers, and attendance at the regional student conference.

Industrial Engineering Program Educational Objectives

The educational objectives of the Industrial Engineering program are consistent with the Mission of UW-Platteville and ABET’s Engineering Criteria.   The educational objectives of the Industrial Engineering Program, as measured within five years of graduation, are listed below

  1. Graduates successfully apply technical knowledge to solve industrial engineering problems.
  2. Graduates communicate effectively orally and in writing.
  3. Graduates pursue professional growth.

Industrial Engineering Program Student Outcomes

  1. An ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science and engineering.
  2. An ability to design and conduct experiments as well as to analyze and interpret data.
  3. An ability to design a system or process to meet specified requirements.
  4. An ability to work as part of a multidisciplinary team.
  5. An ability to identify, formulate and solve industrial engineering problems.
  6. An understanding of professional and ethical responsibility.
  7. An ability to effectively and accurately present information orally, and effectively and accurately communicate in writing.
  8. An understanding of the impact of industrial engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental and societal context.
  9. An ability to pursue professional growth through lifelong learning activities, a knowledge of contemporary issues and ability to use techniques, skills and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice.

Want to Find Out More About Industrial Engineering?

Contact David N. Kunz, Ph.D.  Professor and Chair, Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at or 608.342.1431 or visit any of the IE faculty.

Since 1987, UW-Platteville’s Industrial Engineering Program has been fully accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET,

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