Recently introduced in the United States, motorsports engineering is a subdiscipline of mechanical engineering, which focuses on the designing, evaluating and building of race cars. Engineers in this field are employed by automotive-related companies, where a bachelor's degree or master's degree typically are required. According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook, a mechanical engineer earns $77,020 a year on average.
Colorado State University
The department of mechanical engineering offers a master's and doctoral degree in mechanical engineering with a research concentration in motorsports engineering. Students in the master's program focus on research related to race car design or team engineer activities. Students in the doctorate program focus on advanced subjects such as engine technology and aerodynamics. The department maintains eight research centers and labs with advanced equipment, including a floating-liner friction test engine, chassis torsion tester and a fully-programmable damper dynamometer.
Colorado State University 1062 Campus Delivery Fort Collins, CO 80523 970-491-6909 colostate.edu
The Purdue School of Engineering and Technology within Indiana University offers a bachelor's degree in motorsports engineering. The program is structured to include 127 credit hours of coursework and hands-on projects. It's the first university in the nation to offer a bachelor's degree in motorsports engineering and was ranked No. 2 on Edmunds Inc.'s Top 10 Automotive Colleges and Universities in the U.S. The school also offers a motorsports engineering technology certificate.
Indiana University 799 W. Michigan St. Indianapolis, IN 46202 317-274-2533 iupui.edu
University of North Carolina-Charlotte
The department of mechanical engineering and engineering science offers a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering with a concentration in motosports engineering. Students must complete a two semester engineering project related to motosports and are encouraged to take part in one of UNC's team competitions involving drag car, legends racing, formula SAE or SAE Mini-Baja. The school is in the middle of NASCAR country, which may explain why 10 percent of the engineers employed with NASCAR are graduates of the school.
UNC Charlotte Motorsports Engineering 9201 University City Blvd. Charlotte, NC 28223 704-687-8253 uncc.edu
Heather Neuharth received her B.A. in psychology with a minor in multicultural and ethnic studies at Westfield State College. She has been employed as a direct-care professional for the mentally ill, a job coach for individuals with disabilities and an activity assistant for the elderly. Neuharth writes for various online publications.