Before Calvin: Advice for High School Students
Planning ahead for your academic career at Calvin might seem like a daunting task, but we want to give you the tools to prepare in high school for a possible career in engineering.
The field of engineering is diverse by nature and has something specific to offer you. The principles, concepts, and theories that engineers use in their work are founded on math and science. Engineers add engineering design principles to this foundation.
How do I know if engineering is for me?
Here are just a few attributes engineers commonly exhibit:
- A natural curiosity for how things work
- An enjoyment for taking things apart both mentally and on a work bench
- An interest in finding the links between scientific principles and how they affect real-world problems
- An excitement for new technology
- A fascination for God’s creation and how it could be used to better society
- An investigative perspective on the world in an effort to improve people’s lives
What classes should I take to prepare for Calvin's program?
- Four years of math including at least pre-calculus (AP Calculus if possible)
- Four years science including one year each of biology, chemistry, and physics
- Two years of a foreign language
- Four years of English
- Not required but helpful to have: CAD, drafting, or some other industrial design course
- Not required but helpful to have: an intro computer programming class
- Not required but helpful to have: an AP Calculus course. If you have to choose, AP Calculus is preferred over AP Statistics.
How can I use my degree in engineering?
Here are just a few examples:
- Design a new building
- Properly execute embedded software
- Optimize the operation of a chemical plant
- Design an energy-efficient vehicle
- Work in a lab on advanced research
- Use CAD software to create a schematic
How can I get started?
- Talk to engineers and learn from people who have been there. Our industrial review board (CEAC) has first-hand knowledge of our graduates and would be happy to talk with you.
- Visit campus! Contact our admissions office to make arrangements and request to meet an engineering professor.
- Get the facts on your actual cost after financial aid and scholarship options are explored.
- Pray for God to show you where he wants you to study.
Typical first-year engineering courses
Useful engineering links
- Engineer Girl
- Greatest Engineering Achievements of the 20th Century
- National Engineers Week Homepage
- Discover Engineering Online
- ASEE Accelerator Student Blog
- How Stuff Works
- The Creative Engineer
High school students that want to be considered for scholarships should apply through Calvin’s main scholarship page. As a prospective first-year student (must be admitted to Calvin), you may start applying now and must complete the general application online and any other required steps by February 1.
Buying a computer
We support both Windows and Mac computers for student use when connecting to ResNet (wired) and eduroam (wireless). Most of Calvin’s resident students bring their own computers to campus each year.
Check out our spec recommendations.
Calvin uses the Microsoft Office suite of software: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Access. Professors expect electronically submitted files to be in a Microsoft Office readable format.
Calvin Information Technology provides computing, printing, telephone, and
cable television services to the Calvin community.
It's possible to transfer to Calvin's engineering program from another engineering program. See the Transfer Students page for full information on this process.
Engineering from a Christian worldview
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