Online Engineering Schools in Colorado
Colorado is one of the best locations in the United States to begin a career as an engineer. First, the state is home to some of the most highly regarded engineering programs nationwide, including those at the University of Colorado at Boulder and Colorado State University in Fort Collins. Of course, not all engineering professionals in Colorado will have the opportunity to obtain a degree from one of those schools, but they can still benefit from the proximity through continuing education courses, networking events, and employment opportunities, as well.
Furthermore, the engineering industry in Colorado is exceptionally strong compared to the country as a whole. By illustration, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS Oct. 2016) expected the following subfields of engineering to be the fastest growing nationwide between 2014 and 2024: biomedical engineering (23.1 percent increase in positions, 2014-24), environmental engineering (12.4 percent), marine engineering (8.9 percent), civil engineering (8.4 percent), and mining engineering (6.4 increase).
By comparison, all of these subfields (apart from marine engineering, which wouldn’t apply in a landlocked state) are expected to have even more robust growth within Colorado. Projections Central (2017), relying on data from the BLS, anticipated the following percentage increases in positions across Colorado between 2014 and 2024: biomedical engineering (41.2 percent increase, 2014-24), environmental engineering (36.5 percent), civil engineering (32.5 percent), and mining engineering (30.8 percent). In sum, the fastest growing engineering subfields nationally are expected to have even greater job growth within Colorado.
Beyond the lure of a growing industry and relative job security, Colorado’s engineers also earn competitive salaries, as well. For example, the BLS (May 2016) found that the 61,700 engineering and architectural professionals in the state earned an average annual salary of $89,580, well above the annual average for all positions statewide ($52,710). And some engineers earn far more than that; aerospace engineers in Colorado, for example, earned an average of $129,550 each year, while computer hardware engineers brought home an annual salary of $115,750.
Finally, perhaps one of the best aspects of being an engineer in Colorado is the support available from many professional societies and organizations throughout the state. The following is only a handful of the engineering societies that offer job-related advocacy, education, and myriad other benefits and resources to engineers in Colorado:
- Audio Engineering Society – Colorado Section
- American Society of Civil Engineers – Colorado Section
- American Society of Mechanical Engineers – Colorado Section
- Colorado Association of Geotechnical Engineers
- American Society of Safety Engineers – Colorado Section
- Structural Engineers Association of Colorado
So how does a person become an engineer in Colorado? While many aspiring professionals in this field choose to enroll in traditional, campus-based programs, there’s a growing number of students who are opting for online programs instead. Distance-based engineering schools allow relative scheduling flexibility and can empower students with geographic or time-related constraints to complete a program at their convenience. Particularly for prospective engineers in rural regions of the state, attending an online or hybrid engineering program in Colorado can be an attractive option. These programs generally combine rigorous online coursework with in-person intensives to impart the hands-on facets of the discipline.
This guide explores online engineering programs in Colorado, including the expected coursework, tuition, and three outstanding professors.