May 2018 – Four more Drew University students were admitted to the school’s combined-degree program in engineering with Columbia University. Three of the students are physics majors—Natalya Shcherban, Mack Fox and Ji Hoon Kim—and one, Fabio Ferraz, is majoring in mathematics. Interest in the program has grown, with seven students admitted since last year.
The program enables students to spend three years at Drew and two years studying engineering at Columbia. In the process, they earn two bachelor’s degrees: a bachelor of arts from Drew and a bachelor of science in engineering from Columbia.
“It’s a way that students can have a liberal-arts education on a small campus in the woods, and still become engineers,” said Robert Murawski, associate professor of physics and liaison to Columbia. At Drew, students benefit from small classes and close relationships with professors, he added.
The curriculum is rigorous, with participants required to maintain a 3.3 (B+) average in a class schedule that’s heavy in math and science. To finish the Drew portion in three years, students generally need to complete 20 credits (five courses) per semester or take classes in the summer.
Two of this year’s admits said their time at Drew allowed them to pursue areas beyond engineering.
“I like to explore all the interests I have, and a liberal arts education helps me with that,” said Fabio Ferraz, who’s from Brazil and plans to study computer engineering at Columbia. Along with math and science, Ferraz, who enrolled via INTO Drew University, took classes on art, writing and Pan-African studies at Drew.
Mack Fox, who’ll major in mechanical engineering at Columbia, enjoyed the balanced education he received at Drew, where he also competed on the swim team. “It’s good to go to art history and completely think about something else than math and physics,” said Fox, who’s from Randolph, N.J. “It makes me more well-rounded, not so two-dimensional.”
The partnership with Columbia is among 11 combined-degree programs that Drew offers. Several partnerships include scholarships, and many allow students to complete their studies in less time than usual. Also, some offer guaranteed admission to graduate and professional programs to Drew students who meet grade requirements.