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Thayer expansion
Conceptual view by Wilson Architects


Erasing Boundaries:
Integrating Engineering and Computer Science

For 150 years, Thayer School of Engineering has transcended disciplinary boundaries to ensure that students gain technical breadth and depth plus a liberal arts-based understanding of the world’s complexities.

Today 70% of Dartmouth undergraduates take at least one engineering or computer science course. Dartmouth must build the capacity for all students to do so as technical knowledge becomes an essential part of a contemporary liberal arts education.

Today, as the physical and digital worlds are converging in what the National Academy of Engineering and others call the “Fourth Industrial Revolution,” students require an education that makes the most of this change.

"Now is the time for engineering and computer science to dissolve the artificial boundary between the computational and the physical worlds," says Thayer School Dean Joseph J. Helble.

"Computer science and engineering have collided, and digital technology is being integrated into everything from toasters to self-driving cars," says Professor Hany Farid, chair of computer science. "Our students must be trained in these two worlds."

Establishing a new standard for this new era, we will bring engineering, computer science, and entrepreneurship together physically and programmatically to create a seamless technology education that will prepare the next generation of women and men for lives of influential leadership and global impact.


Dean Joseph J. Helble on Dartmouth's vision for engineering and computer science.


To realize our ambitious vision, we are targeting an investment of $300* million for three major advances:

ACADEMIC INTEGRATION—Operating engineering and computer science seamlessly, with faculty collaborating in teaching, research, and developing novel ways for engineering and computer science students to learn alongside one another.

STUDENT AND FACULTY GROWTH—Increasing the tenure-track engineering faculty from 35 to 70 and the computer science faculty from 18 to 27 over the next 10 years to build the capacity to educate all undergraduates and many more graduate students.

BUILDING EXPANSION—Constructing a state-of-the-art building to significantly increase Thayer’s space and house the Department of Computer Science and Dartmouth’s entrepreneurial, digital design, and electron microscope centers.

* Total project cost for building: $155

Thayer expansion inside rendering.
Conceptual interior view by Wilson Architects


Shared Space

A 160,000-square-foot building adjacent to MacLean Engineering Sciences Center will architecturally express the spatial and programmatic intermixing of engineering, computer science, and entrepreneurship, with open vistas, fully shared facilities, and thematic rather than departmental groupings. Classrooms, project rooms, labs, and offices will be thoughtfully interspersed, continuing a proven Thayer School strategy for sparking collaboration and fostering a keen sense of community.

RESEARCH NEIGHBORHOODS—Thematic research neighborhoods will unite computer science and engineering faculty and students working on innovations in:
• Advanced Materials
• Biotechnology
• Emerging Technologies
• Energy Technology
• Machine Intelligence
• Mobile X
• Security and Privacy
A new electron microscope center will be located in the building to support research.

SPACES FOR ACTIVE LEARNING—Project labs. Maker spaces. A Technology-Enabled Active Learning (TEAL) classroom. The Digital Arts, Leadership & Innovation (DALI) Lab. Complementing Thayer’s existing project design labs and machine shop, these new flexible spaces will allow more courses to feature hands-on design, fabrication, and problem-solving experiences, giving computer science and engineering majors—and students from across Dartmouth’s curricular spectrum—an unsurpassed environment for learning by doing.

ENTREPRENEURIAL RESOURCES—The Magnuson Family Center for Entrepreneurship will help members of the Dartmouth community learn about and launch entrepreneurial ventures. Its location in the new building will allow students and faculty to benefit from entrepreneurial expertise at Tuck School of Business and at Thayer—where a third of the engineering faculty have already founded companies that are turning research findings into applied technologies to improve the lives of people worldwide. 


Bringing the vision to life

To help build Thayer's future, please contact:

Richard Cote
Executive Director of Advancement
Thayer School of Engineering

Give now to Thayer School Annual Fund


Thayer expansion outside rendering.
Conceptual west elevation by Wilson Architects