Student adjusts windmill blade in wind tunnel

A Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in engineering is the highest educational degree, and explores problem solving through extensive research. As an R1 research university ranked in the top 3% of universities worldwide by the Center for World University Rankings, UWM is a premier place to pursue your PhD.

When you graduate, you will have marked scholarship in the broad field of engineering as well as a distinguished critical achievement in your chosen specialization.

You’ll have the opportunity to work with our highly acclaimed faculty involved with research around construction, batteries, energy, optics, rehab robotics, sensors, biomechanics, water filtration, composite materials and tribology.

Program Type


Program Format

On Campus

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Student Spotlight

Farah Nourin was recently invited as a student representative to speak at a US Department of Energy (DOE) Industrial Assessment Center (IAC) roundtable to discuss how the DOE can help American manufacturers to improve efficiency, train an energy-savvy workforce and reduce their carbon footprints.

A PhD degree requires completion of 66 graduate credits beyond the bachelor’s degree. Some students pursue their PhD after completing a master’s degree, and others choose to earn a PhD instead of a master’s degree. Please see the academic catalog for specific requirements.

Many students earn Teaching Assistantships (TAs), Research Assistantships (RAs) or Fellowships during their graduate study which helps to fund their education while also building leadership skills. Assistantships decisions are made by the academic departments only after an applicant has been accepted to the program.

Earning a PhD in can provide you with a wide range of professional or academic opportunities that may include leadership roles in academia, government service, or high-level industrial research.

More Information

Contact the College of Engineering & Applied Science Graduate Programs Office.

We’re a top tier R1 research university and our students have the opportunity to work with biomedical engineering faculty engaged in cutting-edge research in areas such as:

  • Batteries
  • Energy
  • Optics
  • Rehab Robotics
  • Sensors
  • Tribology
Advanced Structures Lab

Research in the Advanced Structures Lab (ASL) led by Professor Nathan Salowitz is focused on active, adaptive, and sensing materials, structures, and systems for applications in intelligent structures that have the ability to sense report and respond to their state. 

Structural health monitoring, damage detection, and self-healing capabilities enabled by this research will lead to a paradigm shift in structural design resulting in lighter weight, more efficient, and safer vehicles and civil structures.  This research spans the fields of mechanics of materials, vibrations, composites, shape memory alloys, piezoelectrics, electronics, and signal analysis.

  • Sensor design to reduce data and simplify interpretation
  • Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) and automated damage detection
  • Ultrasonic signal transmission
  • Self-healing materials
Advanced Manufacturing & Design Lab (AMDL)

The Advanced Manufacturing & Design Lab (AMDL), under the leadership of Professor Ilya Avdeev, focuses on challenging problems related to design.

We help industry partners design complex systems. We build new design tools. We teach design. We help architect and support innovative student teams.

Research areas:

  • Real-time and reduced-order modeling (Digital Twin)
  • Design of energy storage systems
  • Design thinking in engineering education

BioRobotics Lab

The BioRobotics Lab, led by Associate Professor Mohammad “Habib” Rahman, focuses on the design, development, and control of wearable robots that can rehabilitate and assist physically disabled individuals whose upper and lower extremities are impaired. These wearable robots are designed for the individual to use them to rehabilitate, and ultimately, be able to leave the wearable robot behind.

Complex Systems Simulation Lab (CSSL)

Professor Roshan DSouza’s lab description here.

Imaging and Metrology Lab

The Imaging and Metrology Lab led by Professor Yongjin Sung develops novel multidimensional imaging techniques and metrology instruments using the near-infrared, visible light, X-rays, and radioisotopes.

Our college has a wide range of faculty-led labs that perform cutting edge research. For a full list, click here.


Ryo Amano
  • Richard and Joanne Grigg Faculty Fellowship
  • Professor, Mechanical Engineering
  • Director, Industrial Assessment Center (IAC)
Brian Armstrong
  • Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Ilya Avdeev
  • Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
  • Director, Lubar Entrepreneurship Center (LEC)
  • Co-Founder and Executive Director, UWM Student Startup Challenge
  • Director (PI), Milwaukee Regional Energy Education Initiative
Woo Jin Chang
  • Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Roshan D'Souza
  • Richard and Joanne Grigg Professorship
  • Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Avie Judes
  • CEAS Lab Manager
  • Lab Manager, Makerspace
William Musinski
  • Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science & Engineering
Michael Nosonovsky
  • Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Krishna Pillai
  • Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Mohammad Qandil
  • Research Associate, Mechanical Engineering
  • Assistant Director, Industrial Assessment Center (IAC)
Deyang Qu
  • Johnson Controls Endowed Professor in Energy Storage Research
  • Department Chair, Mechanical Engineering
  • UWM Distinguished Professor
Mohammad Rahman
  • Richard and Joanne Grigg Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
  • Chair, Mechanical Engineering Graduate Program Committee
  • Affiliate Professor, Computer Science and Biomedical Engineering
  • Switzer Research Distinguished Fellow
John Reisel
  • Professor, Mechanical Engineering
  • Secretary of the University
Kevin Renkin
  • Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Pradeep Rohatgi
  • Distinguished Professor, Materials Science and Engineering Department
  • Distinguished Professor, Biomedical Engineering
  • Distinguished Professor, Mechanical Engineering
  • Director, Center for Advanced Manufacture of Materials
Nathan Salawitz
  • Richard and Joanne Grigg Faculty Fellowship
  • Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
  • Founder, Advanced Structures Laboratory
Brooke Slavens
  • Richard and Joanne Grigg Professor of Mechanical Engineering, EMS Office 1080
  • Affiliate Faculty of Biomedical Engineering and Rehabilitation Science & Technology
Nathaniel Stern
  • Professor, Mechanical Engineering
  • Professor, Art & Design
  • Director, Student Startup Challenge
Yongjin Sung
  • Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
  • Associate Professor, Biomedical Engineering
Mohamed Yahiaoui
  • Teaching Faculty 3, Mechanical Engineering
Xiaoxiao Zhang
  • Scientist I, Mechanical Engineering Department
Dong Zheng
  • Scientist III, Mechanical Engineering Department


Therese Crary
  • Advisor, Graduate Programs
  • Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Biomedical Health Informatics
Bob Packard
  • Advisor, Graduate Programs
  • Civil/Environmental Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Industrial/Manufacturing Engineering, Materials Science & Engineering

UWM is proud to be one of only two R1 research universities in Wisconsin. We’re also a top externally funded institution with robust opportunities for teaching and research assistantships. Partners that support our important research include:

  • National Academy of Sciences, Engineering & Medicine (NASEM)
  • National Science Foundation (NSF)
  • United States Department of Defense (USDoD)
  • United States Department of Energy (USDoE)
  • Regional businesses: Johnson Controls, Rockwell Automation, Harley Davidson, We Energies
Mechanical Engineering
Contact Info:

Street Address
College of Engineering & Applied Science
3200 North Cramer Street
Milwaukee, WI 53211

Mailing Address
College of Engineering & Applied Science
P.O. Box 784
Milwaukee, WI 53201-0784