Best Mechanical Engineering Schools in Illinois 

To become a practising Mechanical Engineer in Illinois, you must be able to earn a degree in mechanical engineering. This means you have to study mechanical engineering at any accredited school in Illinois. This article has the 2023 ranking of the best Mechanical Engineering schools in Illinois.

Generally, the state of Illinois has 11 ABET-accredited universities, which have more than 60 different ABET-accredited engineering degrees.

In total, there are 43 schools in Illinois with some form of engineering program. These include areas such as aeronautical engineering, mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, biological engineering, and many other engineering majors offered throughout the state.

One of the most popular cities in Illinois with mechanical engineering schools in Chicago, which houses universities that offer engineering programs, such as Northwestern, University of Illinois Chicago, and Illinois Institute of Technology. Another popular city to study engineering is Urbana at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Also, to become a practising mechanical engineer, you have to get your license from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, which will require you to pass the required NCEES exam.

Taking a quick glance at the Table of contents below will give an overview of all the information embedded in this article.

What is Mechanical Engineering?

Technically, mechanical engineering is the application of problem-solving principles and techniques from design to manufacturing engineering on the market for any object.

For this reason, Mechanical engineers analyze their work using the principles of motion, energy, and force, ensuring that designs work safely, efficiently, and reliably, all at a competitive cost.

Mechanical engineers make a difference. Careers in mechanical engineering focus on creating technologies to meet human needs. Almost every product or service in modern life has probably been touched in some way by a mechanical engineer to help humanity.

This includes solving today’s problems and creating future solutions in health, energy, transport, world hunger, space exploration, climate change, etc.

Being rooted in many challenges and innovations in many fields means that mechanical engineering training is versatile. In order to meet this high demand, mechanical engineers can design a component, machine, system, or process.

It ranges from macro to micro, from the largest systems like cars and satellites to the smallest components like sensors and switches. Everything that needs to be done – in fact, anything that has moving parts – needs the expertise of a mechanical engineer.

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Why a Mechanical Engineering School at Illinois?

At Illinois, earning a college degree in mechanical engineering is just the beginning for any student. In case you might be wondering what is the essence of studying Mechanical Engineering in any of the top schools in Illinois.

Firstly, most graduates in Illinois school have a wide variety of opportunities available after graduation and are ready to contribute to society through professional practice in industry or government positions. While some of the students can also choose to pursue careers in related fields such as business, law, or medicine.

Most of the recent mechanical engineering graduates from schools in Illinois are employed at Amsted Rail and Lockheed Martin, as well as other reputable companies. These graduates work as process engineers, design engineers, and many other roles.

Most importantly, most graduates continue their studies by pursuing higher studies in masters and PhD or obtaining advanced training and licenses in the profession of their choice.

For this reason, by studying in any of the schools, Illinois students with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering can enter graduate studies to continue their studies in mechanical engineering or other closely related disciplines. Such as aerospace, civil engineering, biomedical and chemical engineering.

In addition, the state of Illinois has 11 ABET-accredited universities, which have more than 60 different ABET-accredited engineering degrees. And the ABET Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology is the top engineering accreditation body at the program level.

Please note that there are other forms of accreditation: regional accreditation is generally the best, but national accreditation should also suffice.

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What is the Job Outlook for Mechanical Engineers in Illinios?

Mechanical engineering is based on the application of physics and mathematics. It is challenging, and rewarding and is one of the most diverse disciplines among engineering programs.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in the mechanical engineering industry is expected to increase by 9% between 2016 and 2026, resulting in 25,300 new jobs.

The wide opportunities in this work window should leave aspiring mechanical engineers feeling encouraged. Architecture, alternative energy, renovation, and nanotechnology are subsets of this profession that should have vacancies for candidates with the appropriate training and experience.

For most mechanical engineering jobs, applicants will need a bachelor’s degree named after the profession. However, some may get entry-level jobs with an associate degree. Hopeful managers have an even higher level of education to satisfy: a master’s degree, in most cases.

In addition to a diploma from an accredited program and four years of relevant work experience, those who offer their services independently must pass a state-specific exam to obtain a license, a requirement within 50 States and the District of Columbia.

There are currently approximately 288,800 mechanical engineers in the United States. Meanwhile, the job market for mechanical engineers is generally expected to grow by 8.8% between 2016 and 2026.

Currently, in Illinois, there are 15,930 Mechanical Engineers that have employment and that is over 80% of the size of Mechanical Engineers in Illinois.

What Does a Mechanical Engineer Do in Illinois?

One of the most diverse and versatile fields of engineering, mechanical engineering is the study of moving objects and systems. As such, the field of mechanical engineering touches virtually every aspect of modern life, including the human body, a very complex machine.

The role of a mechanical engineer in Illinois is basically to put a product or an idea on the market. To do this, the mechanical engineer must be able to determine the forces and thermal environment that a product, its parts, or its subsystems will encounter. Then go forward to design them for functionality, aesthetics and durability and determine the best manufacturing approach that ensures flawless operation.

Mechanical engineers play key roles in a wide range of industries, including automotive, aerospace, biotech, computing, electronics, microelectromechanical systems, power conversion, robotics, and automation and manufacturing.

The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) lists 36 technical divisions, ranging from advanced power systems and aerospace engineering to solid waste and textile engineering.

Mechanical engineers generally do the following:

  • Analyze the problems to see how a mechanical device could help solve the problem.
  • Design or redraw mechanical devices, creating blueprints so the device can be built
  • Prototype the device and test the prototype.
  • Analyze test results and modify the design if necessary
  • Supervise the manufacturing process.

Where Does Illinois Mechanical Engineers Work?

Mechanical engineers are the second most important engineering profession in Illinois.

Most mechanical engineers in Illinois primarily work in large engineering, research and development services, manufacturing industries, and the federal government.

While others work in general-purpose machinery manufacturing, auto parts manufacturing, other management laboratories, and commercial testing.

However, Mechanical Engineers generally work in professional offices in Illinois.

Sometimes they can visit construction sites where a problem or equipment requires their personal attention. Most mechanical engineers in Illinois work full-time, and some work up to 60 hours or more per week.

Some notable companies that largely recruit mechanical engineers in Illinois are:

  • Boeing
  • Coffman Engineers
  • HP
  • L3Harris
  • QinetiQ North America
  • Bechtel
  • National Oilwell Varco
  • Focal Point
  • ASML
  • Middough
  • 3M
  • 20/10 Engineering Group
  • Cooper Tire and Rubber Company
  • Cymer
  • Delphi Technologies
  • DreamVu
  • ExxonMobil
  • Fast Radius
  • Horton
  • II-VI EpiWorks
  • John Deere
  • Microsoft
  • Navistar
  • Northrop Grumman
  • Ping An Technology
  • Pronic
  • Sandia National Laboratories
  • Schlumberger
  • Shah Trade Corporation
  • Shanghai Techbank Medical Technology Co.
  • Steel Founders’ Society of America
  • TimeTooth Technologies

How Much Do Mechanical Engineers in Illinios Make?

Salaries in mechanical engineering vary widely depending on the region in which they work, the industry, and the experience they have. There are other factors that will also affect the salary of a mechanical engineer, including the company they work for and whether they have a contract or are permanent.

Basically, the entry-level mechanical engineers with a bachelor’s degree earned an average annual starting salary of $61,300, according to the 2012 Spring Salary Survey by the National Association of Universities and Employers.

Also, NACE reported that mechanical engineers with a master’s degree started on average at $75,700. Significantly more than the average starting salary for mechanical engineers with a bachelor’s degree.

According to the 2012 Engineering Wage Survey, the top five services or industries with the highest median wages among the lowest 10 percent of wage earners were gas services at $73,000. Followed by oil / natural gas products at $70,500; electrical services at $70,084; chemical, pharmaceutical, and related products, $68,250; and other mixed public services, $65,484.

According to results released by the BLS, mechanical engineers working in the Southwest and Northeast earned the highest average wages, while those in the Midwest earned the least. Illinois was the highest-paid state in 2012, where mechanical engineers earned an average of $103,840 per year.

Chicago ranked second with 94,420 and Rhode Island third with $92,820. The lowest average salary was reported in Wisconsin, where mechanical engineers earned an average of $69,610.

Mechanical engineers earn roughly the same as related careers in Illinois. On average, they do less than nanotechnology engineers but more than explosives workers.

Highest Paying Cities in Illinois for Mechanical Engineers

The highest-paid city in Illinois for mechanical engineers is Gurnee. The average salary for a mechanical engineer is $129,277 per year in Gurnee, IL, making it the highest-paid.

Followed by the Rolling Meadows, with an average salary of $96,203 per year for Mechanical Engineers. Thirdly, is the Lincolnshire that now has an average salary of $88,423 per year for mechanical engineers.

Fouthly is Chicago, one big city that houses a lot of companies that where mechanical engineers work an earn an average salary of $87,719 per year.

  • Batavia where Mechanical Engineers earn $87,473 per year
  • Aurora where Mechanical Engineers earn $85,391 per year
  • Lisle where Mechanical Engineers earn $77,940 per year
  • Des Plaines where Mechanical Engineers earn $76,621 per year

How Much Does it Cost to Study Mechanical Engineering Program in Illinios?

The average cost of tuition for Mechanical Engineering Programs in Illinois is $14,900 per semester. However, public institutions and two-year universities tend to lower tuition rates.

Regardless of the school you attend, you can minimize your personal expenses by getting scholarships and grants.

Meanwhile, there are many Mechanical Engineering scholarship opportunities to consider in Illinois. The Illinois Society of Professional Engineers offers students a variety of $1,000 engineering scholarships. And the Illinois Section of the ASCE awards scholarships of up to $2,000 each year.

In addition, each of these schools also offers scholarships to their undergraduate and masters students as well.

What are the Education Requirements to Become a Mechanical Engineer in Illinois?

Most of the Mechanical Engineering schools in Illinois offer different degree programs ranging from undergraduate to master’s degrees.

If you want an associate degree, you must earn 60 credits. You may be able to complete this operation in about two years.

While Bachelor’s degrees require 120 credits, which should take four to five years. However, some of the classes you may need to take at this level include solid mechanics, component design, and thermodynamics because you will be required to spend time in class and in the laboratory to gain hands-on experience with engineering materials.

Furthermore, earning a master’s or doctorate after completing your bachelor’s degree can prepare you to teach and research in mechanical engineering. For this reason, if you want to obtain a master’s degree, it will involve taking 30-course credits over a period of two to three years. To obtain a doctorate, follow the same courses as a master’s student. However, you must also write and defend a thesis.

In order to work as a mechanical engineer in Illinois, you must obtain your license from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. First, you must pass the required NCEES exam.

After passing this exam, you can complete your license application. As long as you renew when necessary and meet the continuing education requirements, you can continue working as an Illinois engineer.

What are the Best Mechanical Engineering Schools in Illinois?

The World Scholarship Forum 2023 ranking analyses over 67 colleges and universities offering a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering. We looked at over 10 factors to determine the top 10 ranked Colleges for Mechanical Engineering students.

Ranking Methodology

In selecting the Best and Top-Ranked Schools for Mechanical Engineering in Illinois in 2021, we will be considering several ranking factors. Note that this World Scholarship Forum Ranking of Best Mechanical Engineering Schools in Illinois is actually considering about 10 factors, but we will explaining some in detail. They include:

Number of Programs: We consider these as one important criterion for ranking the Top Mechanical Engineering Schools in Illinois Rankings in 2021. Because some of these universities can have a good number of programs they offer which will avail you a lot of options to choose from.

Accreditation: This criterion is very much important because a school can be considered good with great programs but yet not have quality. So, we consider the body of accreditation as well as certification for each of these schools before ranking them. Whether they fall in the category of regional or national accreditation.

Acceptance Rate: This is one aspect that is considered important because the lower the acceptance rate, the better the school. The acceptance rate of any university in Michigan is a guide to show the quality of the university.

Graduation & Employment Rate: Here, we consider if these schools have a high tendency to graduate their students. Some can get enrolled but get stuck at the end. Also, we put into consideration whether school graduates are employable by great institutions. These factors are equally very much important.

Illinois Institute of Technology


Graduation Rate: 98%

Number of Programs: 5

Students to Faculty Ratio: 2.4:1. 

The Illinois Institute of Technology Armour College of Engineering Department of Mechanical, Materials, and Aerospace Engineering offers students a great opportunity.

Specifically, to be able to explore the design and manufacture of machinery, aircraft, and vehicles beyond Earth’s atmosphere, as well as the structure and properties of materials engineering.

While the Master of Science in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering will prepare you for a career in industrial research and development or for future university careers, enhance your knowledge in the field through graduate courses and cutting-edge research.

Most importantly, the Illinois Institute of Technology offers 3-degree programs in mechanical engineering. It is a medium-sized private university in a big city. In 2015, 155 students graduated in the field of mechanical engineering study, with students earning 90 master’s degrees, 60 bachelor’s degrees, and 5 doctorates.


Basically, the Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering program prepares students for designing, developing, and manufacturing machines and devices at all scales in energy production and transfer, as well as in the broad field of System Design and Control.

While the Illinois Tech Master of Science in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering will expose you to a wide range of applications, from robotics, engines and rockets, to manned and unmanned aircraft and spacecraft, to self-driving cars, among many other innovations.

Similarly, the Illinois Tech Armor College of Engineering offers an accelerated Master of Mechanical Engineering / Master of Science and Materials Engineering program. This allows students to pursue advanced studies and complete both degrees in as little as five years.

In addition, the Illinois Armor College of Engineering Institute of Technology also offers an accelerated Bachelor of Science master’s program in Mechanical Engineering / Master of Engineering in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.


The department’s undergraduate degrees in mechanical engineering, aerospace engineering, and materials science and engineering are all accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, Inc.

Also, each of their programs is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET.

University of Illinois at Chicago


Graduation Rate: 61.8%

Number of Programs: 3

Students to Faculty Ratio:  3.5:1

The University of Illinois at Chicago offers 3 degree programs in mechanical engineering. It is a great public university in a great city.

In 2015, 189 students graduated in the field of mechanical engineering study, with students earning 127 bachelor’s degrees, 50 master’s degrees, and 12 doctorates.


Basically, the Robert R. McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science at Northwestern University (McCormick) offers a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering.

Also, the University of Illinois at Chicago offers a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. To earn a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from UIC, students must meet the university, college, and departmental diploma requirements.

Equally, the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering also offers master’s degree programs designed to meet a wide range of student needs and career goals in the field. Many students complete these programs and gain direct access to higher-level jobs in industry and government agencies. In contrast, others use the degree as a springboard for doctoral studies in mechanical or industrial engineering.

In the past five years, UIC has graduated 371 students with a master’s degree in mechanical engineering, 229 with a master’s degree in industrial engineering, and 119 with a master’s degree in energy engineering.


Above all, UIC’s undergraduate programs in mechanical and industrial engineering are accredited by ABET, whose name began as an acronym for the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology.

Northwestern University

Address: McCormick School of Engineering, Technological Institute, 2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208

Graduation Rate: 91%

Number of Programs: 4

Students to Faculty Ratio: 4.6:1

McCormick School of Engineering combines innovative teaching and innovative research in a highly collaborative environment that transcends traditional academic boundaries.

Northwestern University also offers students and faculty exceptional opportunities for intellectual, personal and professional growth in an environment enhanced by the wealth of the city of Chicago.


Basically, the offers a bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering.

Equally, McCormick’s combined BS / MS program allows college students to earn a Bachelor’s (BS) and Master’s (MS) simultaneously, which shortens the time required to earn a Master’s degree.

Meanwhile, their mechanical engineering master’s program has two options: the thesis option and the non-thesis option for a terminal MS degree. While her doctoral program in mechanical engineering focuses on the discovery of new knowledge and technologies.


Most importantly, the bachelor of science in mechanical engineering program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET.

Bradley University

Address: 1501 W Bradley Ave | Peoria, IL 61625

Graduation Rate: 88%

Number of Programs: 4

Students to Faculty Ratio: 12:1

Bradley University offers 4 mechanical engineering degree programs. This involves a bachelor’s degree with a concentration in biomedical engineering and energy concentration, then a master’s degree.

Bradley’s graduate program in mechanical engineering prepares you successfully to advance your career or earn a Ph.D. In recent years, all Bradley mechanical engineering students have found employment or begun doctoral courses within six months of graduation.


Basically, a college course in mechanical engineering brings textbooks to life through hands-on experiences. Explore the mathematical, scientific, and physical principles that underlie mechanical engineering. The ME degree prepares you to work in fields such as aerospace, automotive, robotics, biomedical, energy, agriculture, and many others.

Meanwhile, the 30-hour Master of Science program in mechanical engineering strengthens your ability to creatively solve technical problems.

Equally, the degree gives you technical experience to pursue your engineering career. Although designed for students with a college degree in mechanical engineering, you can conditionally access the program if you have a degree in another field of engineering or a related field.


Above all, Bradley’s mechanical engineering program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET.

University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign

Address: The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Mechanical Engineering Building 1206 W. Green St. MC 244 Urbana, IL 61801, USA

Graduation Rate: 93%

Number of Programs: 8

Students to Faculty Ratio: 4.5:1

The Grainger College of Engineering at University of IllinoisUrbanaChampaign Department of Science and Mechanical Engineering (MechSE) is consistently ranked in the Top 10 by the U.S. News & World Report, and for a good reason!

Students in their two majors, Mechanical Engineering and Mechatronics Engineering, have a real impact here and abroad.


Basically, the ABET-accredited undergraduate program in mechanical engineering at the University of Illinois is consistently ranked among the best in the United States.

Students in this department have access to internationally recognized and award-winning faculty, world-class labs, and exceptional resources.

Also, the Department of Science and Mechanical Engineering (MechSE) is a comprehensive department, and its graduate programs in mechanical engineering (ME) and theoretical and applied mechanics (TAM) are among the best in the world.

Generally, MechSE offers 7 graduate programs:

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Master of Science in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics
Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (online)
Doctor of Philosophy in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics

​Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering 
Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering (online)


Most Importantly, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Engineering Mechanics Program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET.

Also, the  University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Mechanical Engineering Program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET.

Southern Illinois University Carbondale


Graduation Rate: 89%

Number of Programs: 4

Students to Faculty Ratio: 1.2:1

Officially, the department was created in 1970 and was called the Department of Thermal and Environmental Engineering.

Currently, there are now 15 faculty members, including the president, the director of the Center for Advanced Friction Studies, and the director of the Coal Research Center.

Most importantly, the department offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering and participates in doctoral studies at the university level engineering science program.


Basically, the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Energy Processes offers a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Mechanical Engineering, which is accredited by the Accreditation Commission of Engineers of the Accreditation Council for Engineering and Technology (EAC / ABET)

They also offer a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Ph.D. in Engineering Science with a concentration in Mechanical Engineering. Whatever your interests and backgrounds vary, their programs offer you cutting-edge opportunities to excel.

In addition, the Department also offers an accelerated Master of Science program in mechanical engineering.


Most importantly, the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Energy Processes offers a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Mechanical Engineering, which is accredited by the Accreditation Commission of Engineers of the Accreditation Council for Engineering and Technology (EAC / ABET)

Northern Illinois University

Address: Engineering Building, Room 226 590 Garden Road Northern Illinois University DeKalb, IL 60115

Graduation Rate: 89%

Number of Programs: 3

Students to Faculty Ratio: 16:1

At the Northern Illinois University, its mechanical engineering department has chosen an increasing number of students seeking to start or advance their engineering careers.

Basically, Northern Illinois University offers 2 Mechanical Engineering Degree programs. In 2015, 116 students graduated in the study area of Mechanical Engineering with students earning 77 Bachelor’s degrees, and 39 Master’s degrees.


There are two Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degrees: Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering and Bachelor of Mechatronic Engineering. Additionally, in your Master of Science (MS) program, your creative and analytical skills are challenged to design a specialized component or system to meet an industry need.

Most importantly, the Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering offers you a high-quality visionary engineering education that reflects professional engineering standards. And it also prepares you to become an engineer and leader capable of solving the technical challenges that industry and society face today and in the future.

While the Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering helps you develop your leadership, communication and research skills while stimulating your creativity in this exciting field.

Finally, the mechanical engineering doctoral program will deepen your knowledge of quantitative and qualitative research methods and tools.


Above all, Northern Illinois University and the College of Engineering and Engineering Technology maintain accreditation with the leading engineering education commissions to ensure that you receive a high-quality education. And it is the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET.

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Address: 1 Hairpin Dr, Edwardsville, IL 62026, United States

Graduation Rate: 87%

Number of Programs: 3

Students to Faculty Ratio: 16:1

SIUE School of Engineering is one of the most comprehensive engineering schools in the region and offers a wide range of professionally approved engineering programs.

In the Department of Mechanical Engineering, courses are offered in Fluid Mechanics and Thermal Sciences, Structural and Vibration Mechanics, Nonlinear Dynamic Systems, and Mechatronics, Robotics, and Systems. of control.


The department offers university degrees in mechanical and mechatronic engineering and robotics.

In addition, the department offers thesis and non-thesis options for the study program. Both options require 30 credit hours.

Similarly, mechanical engineering offers a combined five-year undergraduate and graduate program leading to the Bachelor of Science (BS) and Master of Science (MS).


Above all, UIC’s undergraduate programs in mechanical and industrial engineering are accredited by ABET.

Mechanical Engineering in Illinois FAQs

While the working day of a mechanical engineer is as varied as the industries they work in, they typically apply a mix of analytics and technical expertise to solve problems, develop new products and technologies, and improve processes.

Employment prospects for mechanical engineers are very good because engineering graduates and apprentices are in high demand. By 2022, engineering companies are expected to have 2.74 million job openings, of which, 1.86 million will be roles requiring engineering skills.

The average salary for an engineering graduate is £26,536, which is almost £5,000 more than the average for university leavers. Apprentices who become Engineering Technicians earn on average £26,836. With experience and professional qualifications, average basic salaries grow to around £70,000 for Chartered Engineers.

If you enjoy creating practical solutions to problems and like turning your ideas into reality, then a career in mechanical engineering could be for you. 
While having a passion for maths and science is important, the diverse nature of mechanical engineering means it’s a good fit for creative people with all sorts of interests. 


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