Biomedical engineering is a field that requires a strong understanding of the human body and how engineering principles can help fix medical concerns. If you want to get started in this rapidly-expanding field, there are five schools in Colorado you can attend. There are schools as far north as Fort Collins and as far south as Denver. Bachelor's degrees and Master's degrees are awarded at all five of these schools. The average cost of tuition in Colorado is $22,900 per year, but there are many public universities with lower tuition costs. The average class in Colorado has just 17 students.
Biomedical engineers are responsible for designing very delicate equipment that affects how the body works, so it is clear that education is incredibly important. You'll need at least a Bachelor's degree to get licensed in Colorado; this degree includes 120 credits and should take you about four years.
Your curriculum starts with general lower-level engineering courses and then quickly ramps up to more advanced biomedical courses. Some of the classes you may be required to take include Quantitative Physiology, Biology & Biotechnology, Biomedical Design, and Thermodynamics.
While you may spend a considerable amount of time learning about the theory behind biomedical engineering, you'll also get into the research and practical aspects of the field. Whether you simply read research or conduct it, it will drive how you work. In your school's engineering lab, you will learn how to work with engineering materials.
Learning with and from other students can help cement your knowledge. At the University of Colorado Boulder, you can join the Colorado Biomedical Engineering Society and work with your peers.
Tuition rates differ from school to school in Colorado, so it's good to evaluate all your options before you decide which school to attend. Each school also has different financial aid opportunities, so that should be part of your research. On the low end of the scale, University of Colorado Denver costs $10,446 per semester. Tuition at the University of Denver is slightly more expensive, at $13,428 per semester.
There are several types of scholarships you can apply for. Some are school-specific—for example, at the University of Colorado Boulder, you can get the $10,000 Engineering Merit Scholarship, which is awarded over four years. The Society of Women Engineers—Rocky Mountain Section gives scholarships to female engineering students in and around Colorado.
After getting your degree, you may feel excited and ready to start your new career. However, you must first get your license from the State Board of Licensure for Architects, Professional Engineers, and Professional Land Surveyors. This process requires you to pay $160 in application and examination fees. After you take and pass your Professional Engineer exam, you can officially begin working as an engineer.
It's important to keep up on your education and professional growth, since the field of biomedical engineering is always growing and changing. Consider joining the National Society of Professional Engineers—Colorado. You can be the first to know about legislative changes, attend seminars and review courses, and network with engineers throughout the state.