CSU Northridge -- November 5, 2003

CSUN's New Manufacturing Systems Engineering Program Receives Accreditation

Cal State Northridge’s new manufacturing systems engineering program has been accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, an international accrediting agency.

The Department of Manufacturing Systems Engineering and Management premiered last year in Northridge’s College of Engineering and Computer Science in response to a demand for systems and productions specialists who can serve the vast number of manufacturing production companies in the area.
“The greater metro Los Angeles area has the largest number of manufacturing production companies in the United States, with a huge variation in the skills they need,” said department chair Bonita Campbell. “We have employers who are looking for people to design and improve the production processes, ranging from drugs and semiconductors to machine parts and silk screen labels on bottles. The demand in this region is huge, and we now have a program to help meet it.”

Campbell said the CSUN program is the only one if its kind in the area, and for it to receive accreditation was an honor. “We’re more than pleased,” she said. “We’re thrilled to have been able to achieve this particular milestone. We’ve been striving for the opportunity to implement an accredited program for almost a decade, and we’ve finally managed to achieve it.”

The university received notice of the accreditation in late September, Campbell said.

Campbell pointed out that manufacturing systems engineers play key roles in the creation of almost every single product people see or use, from clothing to computers, from automobiles to space shuttles and from frozen foods to toys.

“The challenges of creating and using new materials to meet future needs, the challenges of relieving human drudgery by automating dangerous and onerous production processes, the challenges of forming and leading teams of engineering experts are all examples of the numerous opportunities for which the manufacturing systems engineering program prepares its students,” she said.

Campbell said Northridge manufacturing systems majors receive a broad-based education with a basic curriculum that includes mathematics, physics, chemistry, engineering materials, electrical circuits, engineering mechanics and engineering economy.

In their junior year, students study more advanced topics and take courses designed to ensure their intellectual growth and expertise in five areas: the design and manufacture of products, the design of manufacturing systems, materials and manufacturing processes, the management of the production process and resources, and measurement and inferences regarding manufacturing process variables.

The curriculum also has a focus for community service learning. As part of their senior capstone project, Campbell said students are responsible for designing and building a robot. They also serve as mentors to local high school students.

Senior design students also use the real world as their basic laboratory by working on projects for local businesses. Projects they’ve worked on include the design and development of a CD-ROM counter, design of an improved packaging process for industrial adhesives and polymers, and plant layout design for the production of a medical patient monitor.

The department also offers master’s in materials engineering, automation engineering and engineering management. Cal State Northridge's College of Engineering and Computer Science is home to several nationally recognized programs where students gain valuable hands-on experience working alongside faculty members and industry professionals on cutting-edge research.

Contact: Carmen Ramos Chandler, (818) 677-2130, carmen.chandler@csun.edu

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