Ripon College offers pre-professional advising in engineering that prepares students for further education in the field of engineering as they earn a bachelor’s degree in a similar field.

Students intending to become engineers may follow one of three plans: complete a bachelor’s degree at Ripon College and then do advanced work leading to a master of science degree in engineering from a technical school; study three years at Ripon and three years at an engineering school, receiving a bachelor’s degree from Ripon and a master’s degree from a technical school; and study three years at Ripon and two years at an engineering school, receiving bachelor’s degrees from both institutions.

Students in these programs need strong aptitudes in mathematics and science. They also should maintain a high scholastic average in courses taken at Ripon. They can combine studies in the biological and physical sciences for graduate studies leading to degrees in bioengineering or medical physics.

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Brett Barwick

Barwick, Brett

Associate Professor of Physics, Harrison E. Farnsworth 1918 Endowed Chair in Physics

[email protected]

Christina Othon Portrait

Othon, Christina

Associate Professor of Physics

[email protected]


Ripon College faculty and professional staff are dedicated to helping you reach your goals, whatever they may be and however often they may change along the way. It’s part of our value statement to you.

As a student at Ripon, you will be assigned a faculty adviser based on your area(s) of interest. You will meet with your faculty adviser throughout your time as a student to discuss your current aspirations, plan your course schedule and plot a future trajectory. We also work collaboratively with Ripon College Career and Professional Development to help match your interests and skills to concrete goals and construct a plan for professional success offering personalized career counseling, off-campus learning opportunities and an online job board with potential to connect with local, national and international employers. Our collaboration with Student Support Services provides tutoring and additional academic and skill development, as well as tools to help with note-taking, exam preparation, goal-setting and time management. Likewise, Mentors in the Franzen Center provide in-depth, one-on-one or group mentoring for students about class projects and college-level writing, and can share problem-solving strategies to overcome academic obstacles.

Advising at Ripon

Off-Campus Study

Studying off-campus, whether internationally or domestically in the United States, is an experience bound to change your view of the world. In general, full-time students in good academic standing are eligible to apply for admission to off-campus programs.

Learn more about Off-Campus Study


Students seeking to participate in a 3-2 Dual Degree program in engineering with a major in physics must fulfill the requirements for the Physics major and additionally, must complete MTH 206, MTH 343, CSC 101 and CHM 111 (or CHM 112) to be eligible for the program. Students majoring in Physics may not major in Physical Science. The requirement of two semesters of physics seminar (PHY 501, 502) is waived for students who enroll in a 3-2 program for their 4th year.

Career Tracks

There are many career options and specialties in the field of engineering. Specialities include aerospace, biology, automotive, biomedical, chemical, civil, computer, drafting and design, electrical, environmental, geology, marine, mechanical, petroleum and software.

Unique Opportunities

  • Students are encouraged to view the Barwick Lab and the Othon Lab for exciting research opportunities on campus.
  • Unique opportunities for students through on-campus summer research opportunities with Ripon Physics faculty. Summer research students get to use ultrafast lasers, transmission electron microscopes, and optical spectroscopy techniques to study fundamental quantum physics and biophysics in state-of-the-art laboratories on the Ripon campus.
  • The Oak Ridge Science Semester enables students to join ongoing investigations at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee in research areas as diverse as astrophysics, cell biology, DNA sequencing, genetic mutagenesis, parallel computing, robotics, toxicology and more.
  • Summer research programs in research universities, national laboratories or industrial laboratories. These programs help students broaden their contact with eminent scientists from around the world.
  • Independent study in physical science, chemistry or mathematics offers students the chance to receive college credit for work on individual projects dealing with engineering problems. These projects may be research collaborations with faculty or problems designed by the student. Outside support is available for some areas of study. For example, Ripon College is a member of the NASA-supported Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium. Ripon students can apply for scholarships and research grants to pursue specialized projects in aerospace studies.


Our computer facilities are first-rate. The department has two laboratories with current generation computers systems and computational resources, and they are connected to the campus computing facilities and the Internet by way of a DS3 connection. More computer systems are accessible in laboratories across campus.

Kemper Computer Center provides mainframe resources for faculty and students at all locations via the campus network. Software support includes several languages as well as tools for data analysis, database storage and text editing.