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HBU College of Engineering Takes Shape

The News Magazine of HCU

HBU College of Engineering Takes Shape

HBU President Dr. Robert B. Sloan: The recent vote by the HBU Board of Trustees to launch a College of Engineering was a historic moment for the University. The Houston marketplace, student demand, and HBU’s commitment to academic and professional excellence have all combined to make this new college a reality. We have received some significant commitments from foundations and individuals, and already we have been encouraged by businesses all over the Houston area regarding their support. The leadership of our Board of Trustees, plus the greatest advisory board I’ve ever seen at a university gives us great optimism for the future.” 

In September, the Houston Baptist University Board of Trustees approved the creation of a College of Engineering, and the development of engineering programs. Dr. Stanley A. Napper, founding dean of the College of Engineering, said the approval allows the University to move forward with the college formation and accreditation process.

“We’re working on three programs that the University decided upon with the help of an Engineering Advisory Board and a needs study,” Napper said. “They really settled upon a cyber engineering theme. It’s a worthy focus, and I’m happy to support it.”

The University proposes to offer a Bachelor of Science in Cyber Engineering, a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science.

Curricular themes encompass cyber security, cloud computing, mobility, data analytics and project management. The vision for curriculum structure includes student-owned laboratory devices and project-based learning. All students will complete a senior project and participate in a professional education or internship opportunity.

Dr. James Steen, HBU vice president of Enrollment Management, said, “Engineering is the fifth most popular academic interest among test-takers as reported by the College Board and ACT. Up until this point, we have never been able to accommodate those students interested in engineering. However, with the new College of Engineering, we will have more students who can benefit from an HBU education.”

Napper said, “The demand for professionals who understand the security and physical systems requirements in fields like energy, healthcare, aerospace, IT, financial aid and more is very strong.”

HBU Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Cynthia Simpson said that the addition of engineering adds to HBU’s standing as a comprehensive university.

“Few private schools comparable to HBU offer excellence in the liberal arts and in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education,” Simpson said. “It is a characteristic that sets HBU apart.”

Launch of the college and degree programs relies on financial support from corporations, foundations and individuals. Dr. Napper has identified immediate, short-term and long-term needs, and asks for generous support so that recruiting faculty, recruiting students and equipping labs can begin very soon.

“We think employers will be glad to have graduates from HBU who understand the technical skills, but who also have a commitment to ethical values,” Napper said. “Graduates will be able to meet the challenges of administering operational and information technology across many spectrums.”

HBU College of Engineering Mission Statement:
The mission of the College of Engineering is to educate and train engineers who will utilize God-given resources and God-given talents to serve humanity by solving technical challenges efficiently and securely. HBU engineers serve the Lord Jesus Christ and serve humanity by applying basic scientific knowledge and basic biblical principles to make the world healthier, more productive and more secure.

What is Cyber Engineering?
Cyber engineers incorporate electrical engineering and computer science to understand cyberspace, and use skills developed in digital forensics, security policy and network defense to perform cyber security tasks, as well as work on engineering hardware and software. Cyber engineers design secure systems at the interface of operational technology and information technology.

What is Electrical Engineering?
Electrical engineers apply the laws of electrical phenomena to design, develop and improve electronics and solid-state devices, and to control, convert and distribute energy.

What is Computer Science?
Computer scientists design algorithms and use programming and state-of-the-art concepts in computer and information systems to develop and secure computer hardware and software that address defense, biomedical, business, and general computer and information needs.