Why Study Engineering

at UW-River Falls

Small class sizes, typically 10 - 30 students. Yes, your professors will know your name and they will spend time getting to know you.

Quality instruction and extensive interaction with your professors. Our faculty are dedicated to teaching and advising students.

• Classes and labs are taught by faculty with graduate degrees, not by teaching assistants or graduate students.

• Dual degree students maintain their student status at UW-River Falls even while taking courses at another university.  For example you can play varsity sports at UWRF while taking engineering courses at the University of Minnesota.

• Few problems with full classes – you will be able to get the physics and engineering courses you need.

• Students receive plenty of accurate advising and updated course planning every semester. Advisors are available to answer questions at any time.

• UW-River Falls is an excellent value with inexpensive tuition and low-cost textbook rentals. Minnesota students receive discounted tuition rates through state reciprocity.

• Our prestigious Dual Degree partners include University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Minnesota-Duluth and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.  All programs are ABET accredited.  Minimum GPA requirements vary with partner institution and engineering department, but are generally between 2.5 and 3.5.  Contact Professor Rellen Hardtke at or (715) 425-4230 for details.

• UWRF has a beautiful campus with lots of trees, green space, river, woods, and trails.

• A new student center is the hub of activity on campus. A new athletic facility is being completed.  New suite-style dormitories have been built on campus.

• Scholarships, research assistantships, and internships are available.

• One of the largest and most active Society of Physics Students organizations in the nation.

• Our students and faculty have participated in international study, teaching, and research in Mexico, China, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, Sweden, Antarctica, Scotland and Ecuador.

Excellent employment prospects (even in slow economic times). In Job Outlook, published by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, engineering degrees were 11 of the 17 degrees in top demand.  The United States does not produce enough engineers and scientists to meet its needs.  100% of our Physics/Engineering Dual Degree alumni are employed in engineering and management positions.  Even during the recession, all of our Dual Degree students had job offers upon graduation; most had multiple offers.

Excellent starting salaries for engineering and physics graduates.  Our alumni are working for companies like 3M, Banner Engineering, Mayo Clinic, North Pole Engineering, Sebasta Blomberg, Mortenson Engineering, Heraeus Medical, Hesco, Twin City Signal, Sunshine Heart, and Progress Rail.  The average annual starting salary for our Dual Degree students is over $60,000 plus benefits.  Rapid increases in salary and responsibilities are typical for these alumni.

• Exceptional undergraduate experiences in the workplace and in research.  Our students have interned at 3M, Jacobs Engineering, Cirrus, Banner Engineering,  and SolidWorks.  Our students have been accepted for fully funded NSF-funded REUs (Research Experiences for Undergraduates) at Cal Tech, MIT, Vanderbilt, Michigan Tech, and North Dakota State University among many others.

• Our alumni are pursuing graduate degrees at institutions like Princeton, Michigan State, University of Minnesota, and University of Wisconsin-Madison.

• The UW-River Falls physics department has a cooperative, comfortable atmosphere where students work together.

• All students are invited to explore the dual degree and pre-engineering programs at UWRF. Women, students of color, veterans, non-traditional students, and LGBTQ students will find a welcoming and supportive environment in the UWRF Physics department. We have one of the most gender-balanced departments in the country.

Students Analyze Forces 

Students analyze forces and moments on a crane at a campus construction site.

Contact Us

Physics Department
Phone: 715-425-3235
Fax:   715-425-0652