A CPU chip is examined in a lab.

Materials Science and Engineering

The St. Thomas Materials Science and Engineering Minor is a great choice for science and engineering students who want to develop the knowledge and skills to properly select current materials for design, and learn to engineer future materials for advanced applications. This hands-on, interdisciplinary minor reaches across multiple disciplines and is easily added to a major in science or engineering with one to three additional courses.

Why Study Materials Science and Engineering at St. Thomas?

Coursework in the Materials Science and Engineering Minor first gives you a basic foundation in materials properties, structure and processing, and then is tailored to focus on your area of interest. You can learn about a wide variety  of materials and applications, such as carbon fiber composites, superconductors, batteries, 3D printing, tissue engineering, drug delivery systems, solar cells, nanotubes/nanotechnology, and superalloys. The minor serves those who plan to go on to graduate school in a materials-related field, as well as those entering industry who wish to gain expertise in the overlap between science and engineering. Companies that often hire materials scientists include: 3M, Medtronic, Intel, Honeywell, Boston Scientific, Seagate, Polar Semiconductor, St. Jude, Hitachi, IBM, AK Steel, Dow Chemical, Applied Materials, DuPont and Goodyear.

Program Overview

  • Course Requirements
  • Four-Year Plan
  • Degrees Awarded
  • Materials Practicum
  • You’ll take foundational courses in physics, thermodynamics and engineering materials, plus eight additional elective credits from materials-relevant courses in chemistry, engineering, physics, biology and/or geology. The minor culminates in a significant hands-on practicum experience, where you get to apply your knowledge through a materials-related research project or internship that you design with the help of your project advisor.

    Delve deeper into the areas of materials that interest you most with materials electives. Elective courses are found throughout the science and engineering disciplines, and include topics like Polymers in Design, Applications of Modern Physics, Biomaterials, Smart Materials, Composites, and Materials Characterization.

    Your faculty adviser will personalize a four-year plan with you based on your goals. View the following degree plans with a Materials Science and Engineering minor option:
    Minor in Materials Science and Engineering

    The in-depth hands-on Materials Science and Engineering practicum allows you to apply your knowledge to a real-world materials problem of your choice, either through an industrial internship or a faculty-advised research project at St. Thomas or beyond. With the help of our materials faculty, you can craft your project to address an area of materials you are interested in exploring first-hand in greater depth.

    Course Requirements

    You’ll take foundational courses in physics, thermodynamics and engineering materials, plus eight additional elective credits from materials-relevant courses in chemistry, engineering, physics, biology and/or geology. The minor culminates in a significant hands-on practicum experience, where you get to apply your knowledge through a materials-related research project or internship that you design with the help of your project advisor.

    Delve deeper into the areas of materials that interest you most with materials electives. Elective courses are found throughout the science and engineering disciplines, and include topics like Polymers in Design, Applications of Modern Physics, Biomaterials, Smart Materials, Composites, and Materials Characterization.

    Four-Year Plan

    Your faculty adviser will personalize a four-year plan with you based on your goals. View the following degree plans with a Materials Science and Engineering minor option:

    Degrees Awarded

    Minor in Materials Science and Engineering

    Materials Practicum


    The in-depth hands-on Materials Science and Engineering practicum allows you to apply your knowledge to a real-world materials problem of your choice, either through an industrial internship or a faculty-advised research project at St. Thomas or beyond. With the help of our materials faculty, you can craft your project to address an area of materials you are interested in exploring first-hand in greater depth.
    University of St. Thomas Arches in spring.

    Launching Your Materials Career

    A minor in Materials Science and Engineering is a great launching pad for pursuing a materials-related graduate degree (Masters, PhD) or going straight into an exciting job in industry. Our research-focused alumni are currently pursuing PhDs in top graduate programs across the country. Meanwhile, our industry-focused alumni are employed at places like 3M, Medtronic, Boston Scientific, and more. Since innovation is often driven by materials research and development, there’s never a shortage of research projects or companies looking to explore materials.