Diversity and Support

Our department prides itself on fostering a multicultural environment that enriches every program we offer. Students develop a breadth of concepts and thinking from cultural diversity and it is our responsibility as a department to cultivate a community in which all students, faculty, and staff are welcome, respected, and recognized for their unique contributions. Our students come from all reaches of the globe and bring with them unique experiences and backgrounds that truly strengthen the CE Department.

As a department, and within the entire UNM School of Engineering (SOE), diversity is a priority. The September 2013 issue of HispanicBusiness.com ranked the UNM SOE as the sixth best engineering graduate school for Hispanics in the U.S. We are proud to be part of such a unique community!

We strive to provide the highest quality of education, research experience, financial support, and services for Hispanic students and students of all backgrounds. Considering the importance of engineers with advanced degrees in solving our nation’s challenges, we want to make sure that all of our students, especially those from underrepresented groups, have these opportunities.

School of Engineering students represent varied cultural, academic, and ethnic backgrounds. Many are the first in their families to pursue a college education. They range from traditional students to employed professionals returning to complete their education. And they come from various locations, pueblos and rural areas in New Mexico, small and large cities throughout the US, and other countries.

The SOE student body reflects New Mexico's multicultural population and strong Hispanic heritage. In the undergraduate student population, these cultures are represented: Hispanic (43%), Asian/Pacific Islander (3%), American Indian (7%), African American/Black (3%), Caucasian (38%), and International (1%)

Among graduate students, these cultures are represented: Hispanic (25%), Asian/Pacific Islander (3%), American Indian (4%), African American/Black (2%), Caucasian (50%), and International (12%).

Diverse Student Organizations

Faculty and staff encourage SOE students to join student organizations and their national affiliates. Some of the student organizations available to students are: American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES), Hispanic Engineering and Science Organization (HESO), National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), Without Borders (EWB), Society of Women Engineers (SWE), and Women in Science and Engineering (WISE).

Diverse Career Opportunities

Through career fairs organized by the Office of Career Services and Engineering Student Services, to the professional contacts made via participation in student activities and in research projects and with faculty mentorship, our students have multiple choices when it comes to finding and landing a coveted engineering position after graduation.

The combination of diverse students, interdisciplinary programs, and the focus on integrating teaching, research, and practice makes UNM SOE a great place to recruit students. "Our students are ethnically diverse and study in a multicultural environment so they know how to communicate and work with other types of engineers," explains Steve Peralta, Director of Engineering Student Services. "Companies like P&G want people who already have those qualities."


Engineering Student Services, a department within the School of Engineering, involves all incoming engineering freshmen and transfer students in a special engineering orientation which includes advisement, team building exercises, classroom and lab tours, and meetings with professional academic advisors.

Once admitted to the department, as an undergraduate student, you will be assigned a faculty advisor who will follow you through your entire undergraduate career. Your faculty advisor will not only help you decide which courses to take each semester but will also advise you regarding other issues related to success in your studies. In addition, the Coordinator of Program Advisement and the Director of Undergraduate Programs are knowledgeable and caring individuals who will gladly answer your questions and offer advice.

As a graduate student, you will work with a faculty member in your area of concentration. Your advisor will assist you in selecting the most appropriate courses for your degree program and interests and will guide you in preparing for and taking your master’s and doctoral examinations. The Coordinator of Program Advisement and the Director of Graduate Programs are also available to answer questions and guide you through the steps required for eventual graduation.

Of course, each student can take advantage of the multitude of support services offered within the university, such as the Center for Academic Program Support (CAPS), the Office of Graduate Studies (OGS), the Graduate Resource Center (GRC), the Global Education Office (GEO), Writing Across Communities (WAC), Career Services, and the Women’s Resource Center, and the Accessibility Resource Center.