The aerospace engineering department at ASU does have some excellent faculty available to undergraduates. These few professors are dedicated to their profession, are knowledgeable, respected in their field and find time to answer students questions and concerns.
However, the bad outweighs the good. Starting from the top, the aerospace engineering dean is arrogant, uninterested in student concerns and unwilling to make effective changes to benefit the program. The dean of ASU has no conviction whatsoever about the department and in fact disrespected the top aerospace professor, nationally acclaimed and recognized. The result of which is now he, Dr. William Saric and another top professor, (Dr. Helen Reed) have accepted positions at Texas A&M. Over the past five years students have been on record complaining about the same professors and voicing concerns about the depth and breadth of the curriculum. Yet the professors in question were never approached about these concerns and continued to provide low quality courses with little or no support for students devoted to bettering their education.
The curriculum in aerospace is extremely restrictive. Only two courses in engineering core courses are electives. And the choices for the elective are severely limited. The senior design project is a mandated aeronautical design project. Although this course does provide opportunities to apply knowledge and learn design principles, it fails to adequately prepare the majority of senior students for their chosen field of AEROSPACE ENGINEERING and not aeronautical engineering. In fact, the undergraduate chair, when pressed how the department gets away with calling itself an aerospace engineering department, said it was the students responsibility to read the descriptive paragraphs about the department and courses offered,(which outline aeronautics courses), to determine that the department does not really offer aerospace courses and does not emphasize astronautics. And yet the mechanical and aerospace engineering home page on asu.edu boldly displays an advanced concept electric propulsion rocket.
This program suffers from a lack of conviction and caring from the administrators of the department. They do not listen, and when they do, they do not have any motivation to effect change, or even think about the benefits of change. The department has been the worst ranked department of the whole ASU campus for the last eight years in a row. The department has now dropped to a third tier university for engineering. The top two professors are leaving in January and all their funding, undergraduate programs and worst yet, commitment, knowledge and caring to the students goes with them. There are no new developments or plans to affect change. If at all possible I would suggest getting the hell out of ASU aerospace engineering and go to Colorado, California, Michigan, Princeton, Georgia Tech, Perdue or anywhere else that you can get accepted.