A professors talks with students in a classroom.

Sustainable Engineering is a cross-cutting discipline within the engineering profession.

As the earth’s population grows and standards of living rise, engineers are being called upon to play leadership roles in sustainable development and to find solutions to global challenges such as the depletion of natural resources, environmental degradation and damage to ecosystems.

Engineers are at the forefront of making decisions with long-term implications for the planet, and must balance the needs of today’s global population with those of generations to come.


One of the first of its kind in the country, Villanova University’s Sustainable Engineering master's degree program prepares students to use a whole-systems approach to problem-solving through a lifecycle lens. 

Villanova also offers the Sustainable Enterprise Executive Education & Development (SEED) program, a graduate certificate, and PhD concentration in the area of Sustainable Engineering.

Undergraduates may pursue a minor in Sustainable Engineering or Sustainability Studies (interdisciplinary), as well as a related minor in Humanitarian Engineering.


In addition to its academic programs, Villanova is advancing two initiatives:

The Resilient Innovation through Sustainable Engineering (RISE) Forum: The nation’s first and only initiative to address issues of corporate sustainability and sustainable enterprise through the discipline of engineering, RISE serves as a vehicle for academic–industry collaboration.

The Villanova Sustainable Engineering for International Development Initiative: This initiative will equip a generation of engineers to meet the challenge set forth by the United Nations' 17 Sustainable Development Goals, which serve as a global compass for achieving human and economic development that is both environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive.



Students are encouraged to pursue research opportunities in the areas of:

  • Alternate and Renewable Energy
  • Environmental Sustainability
  • Sustainable Infrastructure & Built Environment
  • Sustainable International Development
  • Sustainable Materials
  • Water Resources Sustainability

Bill Lorenz
Sustainable Engineering Program Director and Professor of Practice



Mackenzie Bowden

Graduate Students Recognized in Engineers’ Week Poster Competition

As a part of Engineers' Week in February, more than 20 graduate students presented their work virtually for the 4th Annual Graduate Student Poster Competition. Engineering faculty evaluated the posters in two categories—technical excellence and presentation excellence—and prizes were awarded. Sustainable Engineering graduate student Mackenzie Bowden took first place in presentation excellence.

Villanova University Launches Sustainable Enterprise Executive Education & Development Program

Villanova University Launches Sustainable Enterprise Executive Education & Development Program

Bringing together a commitment to lifelong learning with a passion for sustainability, Villanova University announces the launch of SEED—Sustainable Enterprise Executive Education & Development. Combining the leadership expertise of faculty from the highly ranked Villanova School of Business with the technical knowledge of professors in the College of Engineering’s first-of-its-kind Sustainable Engineering program, SEED is for experienced professionals interested in creating value by designing and incorporating sustainability practices into their business environments.

Karl Schmidt, professor of practice, with students in the Sustainable Engineering program.

Sustainability is ‘a long term play’

Karl Schmidt, Professor of Practice in the Sustainable Engineering program and director of the RISE forum, joined KYW Newsradio In Depth to talk about how the balance between government and the private sector helps move sustainability goals forward, the areas we've made progress in the past few decades, and the areas where we're falling short.