Updated October 4, 2023
Check these “quick reference” pages for help on items important to undergrad students. What else would you like to see here? What questions do you and your classmates ask often? Send your ideas to co-webmasters Mike Bernard and John Soos.
You can go to these Mechanical Engineering staff members for help!
John Soos, Senior Academic Program Coordinator
- Reserving rooms for class, lab, and group meetings
- “Good Standing” letters
- Teaching Assistant hiring and payments
- Pi Tau Sigma membership, graduation accessories
- Questions you are not sure who to ask for help
Mike Bernard, Academic Program Manager
- Academic Advising
- 4-year Degree Planning
- “Good Standing” letters
- Career and Internship information
- Reserving rooms for class, lab, and group meetings
- Questions you are not sure who to ask for help
Glennisha Fulton, Administrative Coordinator
- Purchasing of supplies and equipment
- Travel reimbursements
- Coordinate shipments and deliveries
- Reserving rooms for class, lab, and group meetings
Contact your faculty advisor or Academic Program Manager Mike Bernard (email@example.com | 410-516-7154 | Latrobe 223) with questions on course selection, degree requirements, other minors and majors, and 4-year degree planning.
Visit these links:
- Academic Advising – Undergraduate page: advising manuals, checkout sheets, course dependency maps, and more.
- The Undergraduate Academic Advising Manual describes these:
- Minors – Engineering and Arts and Sciences
- Undergraduate Course Exception Waiver Forms – to record approved exceptions to degree requirements
There are “checkout sheets,” also known as “4-year plans” of the degree requirements on the Undergraduate Advising Page’s “Checkout Sheets/4-Year Plans” section. Be sure to select your major and year’s sheets for your use.
Lab Safety Course
All students taking courses with experimental labs must now take 990.100 Laboratory Safety for Undergraduates before registering for your courses. This two-hour online course should be completed 24 hours before your registration period begins so the SIS registration system will acknowledge the course’s completion.
Visit the “990.100 Lab Safety” section of the MechE Undergraduate Advising page for information.
Check out the dozens of minors available!
- Krieger School of Arts and Sciences – math, physics, and more!
- Whiting School of Engineering – entrepreneurship, robotics, and more!
The department of Mechanical Engineering currently recognizes two undergraduate tracks.
Students do not have to declare a track but simply just take courses that will qualify.
The “tracks” referred to in the Engineering 101 booklet for freshmen refer to both the aerospace and biomechanics tracks as well as a variety of other specialized areas that do not have a formalized recognition process.
Upon completion of the Aerospace or Biomechanics track, notification of this achievement is placed on the student’s academic record and transcript.
Visit these pages for course schedules:
- SIS Classes – seek class information – course numbers, titles, meeting days and times, instructors, and descriptions – in all forms for the last five years to the present.
- Mechanical Engineering Undergraduate Course Schedules
- Mechanical Engineering Graduate Course Schedules
Visit the Registrar’s course registration page for Registration Instructions and Deadlines.
Visit the University Course Catalog for information on degree programs, academic policies, majors, majors, and faculty.
Some policies that students find important:
- Registration, Credit Limits, Retaking Courses, Courses “out of sequence”
- Grades, Academic Standing and Probation
- AP Credits, Transfer Credits
- Student Affairs: Career Center, Disability Support Services, Student Employment, Multicultural Concerns
- Study Abroad
- Course Numbers, Course Areas
- Mechanical Engineering in the Course Catalog
- Restrictions on counting Peabody courses for H&S requirements (select the Distribution tab)
Visit the Registrar’s “Academic Calendar” page for the academic calendar, which displays dates for registration deadlines, breaks and vacations, alternate class days (Monday-on-Thursday, for example), and exam periods.
Taking Courses Outside JHU
Students can take up to 12 credits outside Hopkins toward their degrees (besides AP and IB credits, and those earned by students who transferred from other institutions). Some students like to take courses during the summer or other times to make room for courses during the academic year, especially if someone wants to earn a minor or repeat a course to absolve a low grade.
There is a pre-approval process that students should complete in order to see if the intended course will be transferrable. Please visit the MechE Undergraduate Advising page > Approval Required: Credit Overloads / Taking Courses Outside JHU for information on how to request pre-approval.
Given the anticipated volume the Whiting School academic advisors are likely to receive with such requests and the time it takes to thoroughly vet the courses, please allow up to 10 business days (two work weeks) to receive a response.
After receiving approval, students can take the course and must earn a C or higher. The school then sends the transcript to Hopkins. Once received, the credits will be transferred to the transcript, though the grade will not be calculated in the Hopkins GPA.
Consider an experience studying abroad! Our students have enjoyed semester-long experiences worldwide. Visit the Global Education office page for information.
Our faculty welcomes undergraduate student participation in research, which greatly enhances your educational experience beyond coursework. Opportunities are available during the academic semesters, intersession, and summer through independent study and research courses or through paid research positions.
To find Undergraduate Research opportunities in Mechanical Engineering, contact the faculty directly to ask.
- Visit the Faculty page for a list of our faculty and their research interests. There are links to their lab sites where you can view their research in detail.
- Select a faculty member or two whose work interests you.
- Be prepared to talk about what interests you about their research. On each Faculty member’s “full profile” pages are publications of their recent papers, which you can often look up in the MSE Library. Read a couple papers. While you won’t be expected to know, much less understand everything in the papers, that fact that you took interest and can discuss what you read will impress professors.
- Sometimes, professors would like to see your resume and/or transcript, so keep those handy when you make your first contact.
- Contact the faculty members of interest by e-mail, phone, or in person and express your interest in their research and that you would like to get involved in their research.
The Undergraduate Academic Advising Manual describes undergraduate research opportunities.
- Sections 1.2.4-1.2.7 discusses general research information, and pre-research course requirements in laboratory safety and responsible conduct of research.
- Section 2 – General Regulations – has a section that describes independent research and independent study for credit.
- Your advisor must pre-approve your doing research for credit.
- To count the independent research or independent study toward an elective section of the BS Mechanical Engineering or BS Engineering Mechanics degrees, the work must be at the rigor and vigor of upper-undergraduate (junior or senior) work or higher.
- A 3.0 cumulative GPA or higher is strongly recommended before doing independent research.
- Generally, 40 hours of research work = 1 credit.
- Students must register in the first six weeks of the semester to earn independent research or study credit that semester. The University prohibits retroactive registration.
- Students taking three or more credits of undergraduate research are encouraged to present a research poster at the University’s Day of Undergraduate Research (DREAMS), which happens in the spring of each year. Visit the link for details on the event and how to submit your poster.
ForagerOne assists undergraduate students in finding and contacting the right faculty mentors through a database of faculty profiles and a guided application process. Students can also find specific open projects that faculty are recruiting for and apply directly to join them.
The department receives information on all kinds of Research Experiences for Undergrads (REUs) and Summer Research opportunities from universities all over the United States and beyond. Watch your e-mail for those opportunities.
The Technical Communication Lab (TCL) serves as a free resource for all undergraduate and graduate students who need help improving written, oral, and visual communication. The TCL offers free consultations in technical/professional writing, presentations and slides, interview practice, visual design, and ESL (English as a Second Language). In past semesters, their consultants have helped students polish papers for publication, prepare for important conference presentations, design flyers for research projects, improve their confidence in their English skills, work on their class assignments, and so much more!
Computers and Software
You are welcome to use the computer facilities throughout campus, especially in the Milton S. Eisenhower Library and the Brody Learning Commons.
Laptops, pads, and software are available at a discount student rate when purchased through Hopkins. Visit the Freshman and Transfer Students page > What Computer and Software Should I Buy for suggestions on which computers are best suited for your studies.
- HAC Lab – Krieger 160 – offers all kinds of Microsoft, Adobe, math, multimedia and engineering software.
- MATLAB – free for your computer, courtesy of Johns Hopkins!
- Visit the Johns Hopkins Software Catalog
- Log in with your JHED ID and password
- Click on “Click Here to Browse Catalog”
- Enter “Matlab” in the search bar and hit enter
- Click on “Matlab for Students” (note: this is the same version as for faculty and staff, with all of the same toolboxes)
- Follow the instructions that appear, which will send you to instructions on how to download the software.
- Software for students from the Whiting School of Engineering
- Software for students from “On The Hub.”
- Free student access to AutoCad
- Johns Hopkins Technology Store – purchase computers at a discount.
- Section 20 of the Undergraduate Academic Advising Manual summarizes computing services.
For Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Mechanics Undergraduates only
HP E60055 – Latrobe 2nd floor, Mezzanine
- Services include printing, scanning, and copying
- The printer has a USB port to print files from it.
- Driver Access and Operations Guide
- IP Address: 10.160.48.237
Canon Printer iR_ADV 6265 – Latrobe 217
- Services include printing, scanning, faxing, file storage, copying
- Driver Access and Operations Guide
- IP Address: 10.160.48.40
- Fax number is +1-410-516-4316.
- Fax using individual sheets or multiple documents through the document feeder.
- Dial “9” to get an outside line, then…
- For local numbers, dial the area code and telephone number.
- For long-distance numbers, dial “1” then the area code and telephone number.
- Print posters and large-scale documents
- IP Address: 10.160.48.244
- USB Drive accessible
- For questions questions and to request access, contact Lab Manager Patrick Caulfield or Administrator Ada Simari.
The University provides mobile printing options at a cost.
Visit the Johns Hopkins Library page for information about our libraries.
You have a librarian! Contact Engineering Librarian Steve Stich at 410-516-8357 or firstname.lastname@example.org. He can help you find research resources and show you how to use the library’s resources and services.
The Mechanical Engineering department has 30 laboratories throughout the Homewood campus. With the depth and breadth of our research, labs can be as simple as a laptop on an office desk to as complex as a full laboratory with elaborate equipment and potentially dangerous situations and substances that need vigilant maintenance.
Inevitably, there will be problems with offices, facilities, and equipment that need attention beyond our department’s ability to address them. There is a central reporting tool that the department uses to vet, record, and refer such problems to get the appropriate help.
Visit the Mechanical Engineering Department Facilities Concerns site to report your problem, no matter what type or size.
MUSC, the Mechanical Engineering Undergraduate Student Council enables communications between undergraduate students and the faculty. The Student Groups page will provide information.
MUSC meets several times a year to discuss issues such as the way courses are taught, availability of courses, advising, and department support.
Two student representatives from each class are elected by their colleagues during the Fall semester. The minutes from MUSC meetings are distributed to faculty, and the issues presented by the students are brought up for discussion and action at faculty meetings.
MUSC welcomes your thoughts, ideas, and concerns. Contact MUSC by e-mail.
College is a huge financial undertaking for families. There is help:
- Student Financial Services
- Other scholarships and fellowships compiled form various sources
Students can work right on campus! There are all kinds of paid jobs all over campus, some engineering, many administrative, and all rewarding and fun.
University Experiential Learning, formerly known as Student Employment Services offers jobs on campus for full-time students. The Student Handbook has good information on jobs, applying for them, interviews, and work conduct.
Some research positions are paid positions, particularly those worked during the summer. Visit Tab #4 about Undergraduate Research.
You can work as a research assistant, student worker, teaching assistant in the Mechanical Engineering department.
- If you’re hired as a research assistant or student worker, visit the Mechanical Engineering office in Latrobe 223 to inquire about the hiring process. Please ensure that your hiring supervisor notifies Grants and Contracts Manager Alison Wampler of your hire, and that he or she provides the date of hire, the position hired, and student year to determine hourly pay.
- If you’re hired as a teaching assistant, Senior Academic Program Coordinator John Soos will notify you directly to begin the hiring process.
TimesheetX is what is used to record hours worked. Students are responsible to submit their time each week. The student’s supervisor will be responsible to approve the hours submitted each week. Both will receive e-mail reminders to submit and approve hours each week.
Time cards must be submitted by e-mail to meet the submission deadline of 2:00 p.m. one week before payday.
Visit the Hourly Payroll Submission Deadline Schedule for the deadline in the “Time Entry Cutoff 2:00 p.m.” column.
Hours submitted after the deadline will be paid at the next available pay period.
Sign up for Direct Deposit, where your stipend will be deposited right into your bank account on payday. Visit ESS, or “Employee Self-Service” to set up Direct Deposit or change accounts anytime.
- Please have your bank account’s “routing number” and “account number” handy before signing in.
- Go to my.jhu.edu and sign in with your JHED ID and password.
- Select the “HR” tab and then the “ESS” tab.
- Sign in again with your JHED ID and password.
- Select the “Payroll Info” tab and you will see the option to set up or edit Direct Deposit. Follow the instructions to set up or update the account.
- When setting up Direct Deposit for the first time, complete the Payee with your name as listed on your bank account. Enter the routing number which your bank or credit union can provide or will be on the bottom of your check. Leave “Bank Account Number” blank but add your account number in “New Bank Account Number” and “Re-enter Bank Account Number.”
- Complete the Account Type, Payment Method, and Percentage or Amount. Most will have 100% of their pay entered into their account.
- Select Review and follow the steps to enter your request.
Purchasing / Reimbursements
There are specific rules and guidelines that the University requires for purchases to be made, whether that is for a research project, a club, or any other purchase where University funds are used in either a grant or in department funding.
- Purchasing and Reimbursements guide – read this before making purchases to ensure you’re properly reimbursed.
- SAP Concur – self-service reimbursement
- The University has moved to a self-service reimbursement system where anyone seeking reimbursement can make a direct request instead of waiting for a staff member to make a request, which saves you time!
- SAP Concur will allow you to submit reimbursements easily and quickly.
- Visit the Johns Hopkins Expense Processing page for training links to the Concur system and to take advantage of real-time training sessions.
- Submit Reimbursement Requests Before 60 Days have Passed – Reimbursement requests must be submitted for reimbursement to the University within 60-days of the purchase date. Please submit your requests at least several days before this deadline to allow the department to submit the request on time. If they are submitted after 60 days, the expenses will be paid to the purchaser as a payroll supplement instead of reimbursement and will be subject to payroll taxation.
JOBS, INTERNSHIPS, CAREER INFO
Are you wondering what’s next in your life and what your career will look like? Check out our Careers and Life page for info, resources, and who can help you create your path!
- The National Science Foundation funds over 500 summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates (NSF REU) programs nationwide, with over 200 with engineering-related themes. These are typically paid 10-week summer research internships, with housing provided, at US Universities. You need to apply individually to each internship program. See Details and Apply!
- The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) and U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) provide many opportunities for students, recent graduates, and others looking for internships, fellowships, and similar programs with the federal government.
The Senior Design Project, a unique two-semester course, is the capstone of Johns Hopkins’ Mechanical Engineering program. In the class, students, working in small teams, tackle specific design challenges presented by industry, government, and non-profit organizations. It is the most significant (and popular) course in the entire degree program.
Info for Juniors – you will begin preparing for the Senior Design experience in your junior year, as you will form teams then. Watch for announcements from the course instructor.
In case of emergency:
- Call Security – 410-516-7777 or the Baltimore City Emergency Line at 911.
- Follow the Security Office’s Emergency Response Guidelines.
- The Counseling Center’s Crisis and Emergency Services page offers action steps for you or others near you in times of mental health distress or emergency.
Safety and Security
The Johns Hopkins Safety and Security office offers many services to keep you and those around you safe. View the page for information on those services and other tips for your personal safety.
Check out the Student Wellness page, which offers support and services in seven key areas of wellness: emotional and mental health, physical health, finances, professional life, spiritual health, sexual health, and social well-being.
Getting Personal Help
Occasionally, students may feel overwhelmed by the rigors of education, especially if coupled with outside stresses like health and family concerns. Johns Hopkins offers a host of resources where you can ask for and receive help.
If you need someone to listen, you can talk to your faculty advisor, Academic Program Manager Mike Bernard or Senior Academic Program Coordinator John Soos. Sometimes, venting to someone may be all you need.
Sometimes, though, you may want to talk to someone who is trained to help people in distress. View these pages for information and hours:
- Prof. Steven Marra, Director of Undergraduate Studies – 410-516-0034 – email@example.com
- Office of Student Life – for information on services, offices, events, and student groups
- Office of Student Disability Services – to get help with a physical or mental incapacitation, no matter how minor.
- Counseling Center – to get help with any emotional concerns, when feeling overwhelmed, and when needing mental health support in a caring environment.
- Sexual Assault Helpline – 410-516-7333 (24 hours). More information here.
- Emergencies – call the Security office at 410-516-7777 or the Baltimore City Emergency Line at 911.
Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity
- Prof. Vicky Nguyen – Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion committee – firstname.lastname@example.org – to discuss concerns about diversity, inclusion, and equity in your personal experience or issues affecting our Mechanical Engineering community
- Diversity and Inclusion Feedback Form – use this Google form to provide anonymous feedback, suggestions, and concerns to the Diversity and Inclusion committee of our department.
- Office of Institutional Equity
That big day at the end of a student’s four years at Johns Hopkins culminates in the celebrations of graduation and commencement.
Timeline to Graduation
- November – seniors send their completed Engineering Mechanics or Mechanical Engineering “checkout sheets” to Academic Program Manager Mike Bernard, who will review and confirm that they are on track to graduate.
- February – submit the Application to Graduate when notified by the Whiting School. Information is available on the Graduation Eligibility and Application page. The deadline to apply for graduation is early-February.
- March – the department certifies graduation and track eligibility. No separate application is necessary for the Aerospace or Biomechanics tracks.
- March to May – seniors complete Exit Interview Surveys and has an Exit Interview. Students will be notified of the schedule.
- Obtain your diploma at Johns Hopkins Commencement.
- Join your family and friends at the Mechanical Engineering celebration, right near Commencement. Graduates will receive an invitation in mid-Spring.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Whiting School has created an information resources in these pages:
- Whiting School Undergraduate Student COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions page
- Whiting School Undergraduate Grading Policies
These links address health and wellness needs, coping with social distancing, academic policy and grading adjustments, research, remote courses, future course registration, and visa concerns.