Message from the Director

Today’s engineers require more than advanced technical skills. They need an understanding of their ethical and civic responsibilities (social, philosophical, moral) to all the constituents touched by their work, particularly in the context of rapid and powerful changes in technology. They must also have a deep understanding of themselves and their place in a diverse society, and they must be able to articulate their ideas to those they impact.To answer this call, the USC Viterbi School of Engineering has expanded its Engineering Writing Program into The Engineering in Society Program, an academic program of instruction and research that addresses the humanistic aspects of a holistic engineering education. Combined with the superb technical education they will receive, Viterbi engineering graduates will be imbued with two key elements of trustworthiness, namely competence and character.The program’s mission is to distinguish a Viterbi engineering education by purposefully connecting a student’s technical work with its societal impact. We’re excited by the responsibility to provide learning opportunities that will span the four years of an undergraduate education and will be anchored in courses available to all students, in extracurricular opportunities, and in modules embedded in technical courses.With developments in artificial intelligence and other technology-related areas challenging our society daily, our goal is to prepare our students to be able to be thought leaders in their fields, engineers who can be relied upon to consider how their ideas will impact our world. The Engineering in Society Program embraces a holistic approach to engineering education – grounded in liberal arts, taught through innovative practice, and integrated within Viterbi’s academic culture. Through a humanistic approach, this program helps students better understand that engineering practice is inseparable from the examination of values, ethics, communication, and societal impact.

Director, Engineering in Society Program

Published on March 2nd, 2017

Last updated on September 15th, 2023