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Florida Gulf Coast University

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Bioengineering (B.S.)

Bioengineering Resources and Links



Students interested in or those pursuing our B.S. Bioengineering degree may find the following resources of interest as they learn more about our field and plan their careers. At FGCU the term "Bioengineering" is used synonymously with the term "Biomedical Engineering".


Quick Facts and Links
Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering Field and Careers
Professional Organizations and Clubs
Annual Design Competitions
Summer Programs and Internships

Bioengineering Technical Electives

Minors Potentially of Interest for Students with the B.S. Bioengineering Major

Quick Facts and Links on Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering:

The 15 Most Valuable College Majors - Forbes.Com Article (5/15/2012) - "At No. 1, biomedical engineering is the major that is most worth your tuition, time and effort. Biomedical engineers earn a median starting salary of $53,800, which grows an average of 82% to $97,800 by mid-career. Moreover, the BLS projects a whopping 61.7% growth of job opportunities in the field—the most of any other major on the list."  Go to Forbes.Com article.

"In the coming decade, engineering—already known for paying college graduates some of the highest starting salaries—is expected to offer the fastest-growing area: biomedical engineering. Jobs in this field, which centers on developing and testing health-care innovations such as artificial organs or imaging systems, are expected to grow by 72%, the Labor Department says."  Go to Wall Street Journal article

"In the science and technology field, jobs range from network architect to meteorologist.  This category includes the fastest-growing occupation – with a 72 percent growth rate that far outstrips the 10 percent average across careers – of biomedical engineer.  Biomedical engineers help develop the equipment and devices that improve or enable the preservation of health." Go to Wall Street Journal article.

In the U.S. and Canada, Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering is one of several undergraduate engineering disciplines which have outpaced all others in growth since 1999. According to the American Society for Engineering Education, "bachelor's degrees in ... biomedical engineering increased by 192 percent over the past eight years". See:

Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering is among the most gender diverse areas of undergraduate engineering study in the U.S. and Canada. According to the American Society for Engineering Education 38.2% of Bachelor's degrees in Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering were awarded to women in 2006-2007, as compared to 18.1% overall across all engineering Bachelor's degrees. See:

"Biomedical engineers are expected to have 21 percent employment growth over the projections decade (2006-2016), much faster than the average for all occupations. The aging of the population and the focus on health issues will drive demand for better medical devices and equipment designed by biomedical engineers. Along with the demand for more sophisticated medical equipment and procedures, an increased concern for cost-effectiveness will boost demand for biomedical engineers, particularly in pharmaceutical manufacturing and related industries." From the U.S. Department of Labor (Bureau of Labor Statistics) Occupational Outlook Handbook.

"As a group, engineers earn some of the highest average starting salaries among those holding bachelor's degrees". According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Bioengineers and Biomedical Engineers on average command similar mean, median and starting salaries to those of many other engineering specializations. For detailed information on typical earnings by engineers in the U.S., including Bioengineers, see:

"Florida has one of the country's largest medical device sectors. Florida ranks 2nd in the U.S. for number of FDA-registered medical device establishments, according to the FDA (2007). Over 20,000 Floridians work in this sector, with a majority of companies located along the Florida High Tech Corridor in Central Florida, the Jacksonville area, and in the South Florida region." From eFlorida.

"With unmatched speed and energy, Florida has become the powerful new catalyst in the global life sciences industry. The state offers the science, talent and support infrastructure needed for the over 200 biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies that call Florida home. The groundswell of activity in Florida's life sciences industry is a result of the state's demonstrated understanding of the needs of life science companies and its deep commitment to fulfilling them." "Florida was named a Top 5 Region for Biotech in 2008 by the industry's daily monitor, Fierce Biotech. This is Florida's 2nd consecutive year at the top of this ranking of regions supportive of biotech development." From eFlorida.

"A History of Biomedical Engineering". Excellent resource on the history of the field of Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering. Within the web archives of the Whitaker Foundation.

Information on the field of and careers in Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering:

BMEnet - The Biomedical Engineering Network. Includes career, job, and a number of additional resources.

"A Career in Biomedical Engineering". Resources within the web archives of the Whitaker Foundation.

"Engineer Your Life". A guide to engineering and careers in engineering for high school girls.

"Planning a Career in Biomedical Engineering". An excellent resource and FAQ provided by the Biomedical Engineering Society on Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering in general, with a number of specifics on career specializations and directions.

Professional Organizations and Clubs:

Annual Design Competitions of Interest to Students in Bioengineering:

Several of the professional organizations listed above generally run Student Design and/or Student Research competitions in conjunction with their annual conferences. These include, for example, the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES), the Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (IEEE-EMBS), and the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA). Check their web sites for details.

Additional annual student design opportunities and competitions described below:

  • The Biomedical Engineering - Innovation, Design and Entrepreneurship Alliance (BME-IDEA) runs an annual student design competition. See:

  • The Collegiate Inventors Competition rewards and encourages hundreds of students to share their inventive ideas with the world each year.

  • International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA) competition has a Student Design category. See:

  • Projects That Matter from Engineering World Health Projects is a way for talented engineers from anywhere in the world to help the people of the developing world.

  • NISH runs an annual National Scholar Award competition for Workplace Innovation & Design to create technological solutions to barriers that prevent people with severe disabilities from entering or advancing in the workplace. See:

Summer Programs and Internships:

Current students interested in applying for summer internships locally or regionally should be in touch with the Department Chair, Dr. Sweeney, as well as the WCE Academic Program Director, Dr. Zidek, well ahead of a given summer (e.g. by January or earlier of each academic year).

Most larger medical device and biotechnology companies run their own internship programs each summer. Many university-based or not-for-profit sponsored internships and summer volunteer experiences also exist nationally and internationally each year for students studying Bioengineering. For example, a number of universities offer competitively applied for Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) or Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) programs. Applications to REU and SURF programs are often due early in a given calendar year.

  • National Science Foundation (NSF) funded REU programs in bioengineering/biomedical engineering can be searched for at:

  • The Summer Institute of Engineering World Health is an opportunity for engineering students to gain hands on repair and design experience while simultaneously helping disadvantaged hospitals and patients in a developing nation. For details on the annual application process see:

  • Summer Internship Program in Biomedical Research at the NIH. See

  • SURF Program at NIST. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) offers SURF programs each summer at both their Colorado and Virginia locations. Opportunities in Gaithersburg, Virginia are likely of most interest to students studying Bioengineering. See:

Bioengineering Technical Electives:

Technical electives must typically be 2000, 3000 or 4000 level and can be drawn from the following recommendations and/or can be requested by permission of the department.  Electives in general should provide increased depth in an area of engineering, science, mathematics, business, or health care that is pertinent to a career served by the B.S. Bioengineering degree.

For depth in engineering and bioengineering -

  • EGN2111C Engineering Computer Graphics (2)
  • CDA3200 Digital Systems (3) (requires instructor approval)
  • CDA4170 Data Acquisition & Control Systems (3) (requires instructor approval)
  • Or any 3000 or 4000 level course in Bioengineering (EGN or BME prefix) that is not already required in the major.

For depth in biology and biotechnology aspects of bioengineering –

  • PCB3023C Cell Biology (3)
  • PCB3063C Genetics (3)
  • PCB2336 Human Genetics (3)
  • PCB4233C Immunology (3)
  • MCB2010C Microbiology with Lab (4)
  • MCB3020C General Microbiology (4)
  • MCB4203C Pathogenic Microbiology (3) (requires MCB2010C or MCB3020C)
  • BSC4422C Methods in Biotechnology (3) (requires BCH3023C and PCB3063C)
  • MLS4191C Molecular Diagnostics (3) (requires PCB3063C)

For depth in biochemical aspects of bioengineering –

  • BCH3023C Biochemistry (3)
  • CHM2211C Organic Chemistry with Lab II (4)
  • CHM3120C Analytical Chemistry (4)

For students interested in human performance, aging and rehabilitation –

  • GEY3001 Introduction to Gerontology (3)
  • GEY3601 Aging and Human Performance (3) (requires GEY3001)

For students interested in the health sciences and health care systems –

  • HSA3110 Principles of Health Services Administration (3)
  • HSA3111 US Health Care Systems (3)
  • HSA3150 Health Care Policy in the US (3)
  • HSA4191 Health Care Information Systems (3)
  • HSC3202 Introduction to Public Health (3)
  • HSC3201 Healthy Communities (3)
  • HSC3624 Global Health Systems & Issues (3)
  • HSC3537 Medical Terminology (3)
  • HSC4500 Epidemiology (3) (requires IHS4504)
  • IHS4504 Research Methods in Healthcare (3)

For students interested in mathematics, modeling and computation –

  • MAA4211 Vector Analysis (3)
  • MAD3107 Discrete Mathematics (3)
  • MAD4401 Numerical Analysis (3)
  • MAP3161 Math for Science & Engineering (4)
  • MAS3105 Linear Algebra (3)
  • MHF2191 Mathematical Foundations (3)

For students interested in business, management, and marketing –

  • MAN3025 Principles of Management (3)
  • MAN3103 Entrepreneurship & Creativity (3)
  • MAN4804 Small Business Consulting (3)
  • MAN3046 Team & Group Processes (3)
  • MAR3023 Introduction to Marketing (3) (junior standing required)

For students interested in international and interdisciplinary issues –

  • HSC3624 Global Health Systems & Issues (3)
  • MAR4156 Global Marketing (3) (requires MAR3023)

For pre-med and other pre-health professions students-

Students interested in fulfilling pre-med requirements appropriate for applying to many medical schools in the U.S. should take CHM2211C Organic Chemistry with Lab II (4) as a technical elective. 

They should also take BSC1011C General Biology with Lab II (4) as an overload to the requirements for the B.S. Bioengineering major.  Students should carefully check (well in advance) the application and admissions policies for each specific medical or health professions school that they intend to apply to following receipt of the B.S. Bioengineering degree in order to ensure that they have met all requirements.  The Bioengineering Department Chair, Dr. Sweeney, is available for pre-med and pre-health professions students to meet with individually to plan their course and application timetables and strategies.

Additional technical electives for pre-med and other pre-health professions students might include:

  • BCH3023C Biochemistry (3)
  • PCB3023C Cell Biology (3)
  • PCB3063C Genetics (3)
  • PCB4233C Immunology (3)

Minors Potentially of Interest for Students with the B.S. Bioengineering Major:

The following minors offered at FGCU may be of particular interest to students majoring in Bioengineering: Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Management, Marketing, Software Engineering. 

Note that where courses appear as both appropriate choices for technical electives in the Bioengineering major, as well as required or elective courses for a given minor, use of the given course for both purposes is allowed.   In Mathematics, for example, overlap between this minor and the Bioengineering major requirements can be very significant – potentially leaving as little as 7 additional credit hours in mathematics needed to obtain this minor.  In Chemistry, choosing BCH3023 Biochemistry as a technical elective for the Bioengineering major will leave a student only one course (CHM3120C Analytical Chemistry) short of achieving the Chemistry minor.