Why Choose Environmental and Ecological Engineering?
Environmental engineering enables graduates to serve people and the planet. Environmental engineers are responsible for designing drinking water and wastewater treatment systems, improving air quality, fostering sustainable development, and developing sustainable technologies that conserve natural resources.
Job prospects are very good for environmental and ecological engineering students. In fact, U.S. News & World Report ranked environmental engineers #1 in their 2017 Best Engineering Jobs list. This list rates careers based on elements such as salary, job availability, advancement opportunities, and career fulfillment. The United States Department of Labor predicts 22% growth in environmental engineering jobs over the next decade, leading to the creation of more than 22,000 new jobs in the field of environmental engineering by 2020. However, U.S. universities currently produce about 1,000 BS level environmental engineering graduates per year, meaning that environmental engineers will be in demand.
The current average salaries of environmental engineers are comparable to other engineering fields. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2016, the mean annual salary for environmental engineers with a Bachelor of Science is $84,890. Which, for example, is comparable to the mean annual salary for mechanical engineers ($84,190), civil engineers ($83,540), and material engineers ($93,310).
Environmental and Ecological Engineering at Purdue is highly regarded nationally. In the 2017 US News and World Report lists of Best Undergraduate Engineering Programs, the Environmental and Ecological Engineering program ranked 13th (tied with Univ. of Colorado) in the United States among environmental engineering programs and the Purdue Engineering program as a whole ranked as the 9th best undergraduate program among doctoral-granting universities (tied with Cornell University).