Prospective Students

What is Process & Chemical Engineering ?

The Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) defines Chemical Engineering like this:

"Chemical, biochemical and process engineering is the application of science, maths and economics to the process of turning raw materials into everyday products. Professional chemical engineers design, construct and manage process operations all over the world. Pharmaceuticals, food and drink, synthetic fibres and clean drinking water are just some of the products where chemical engineering plays a central role."

Overall, Process & Chemical Engineering provides a pathway towards helping meet society’s needs. These include energy generation, food production, water supply, waste management, consumer goods and healthcare products. Moreover, societal needs are driven by economic considerations and framed by ecological limits. In this context, the challenges facing society through the twenty first Century are substantial. A number of radical innovations – both technical and non-technical, are required in order to overcome the many challenges ahead. Potential solutions will need to be rooted in the economic, social, environmental and political context. Process & Chemical Engineers, with their understanding of material and energy flows and of thermodynamics, are well placed to be key, indeed lead players in this universal and trans-disciplinary effort.

The Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) have identified six key themes that will concern the profession (and indeed society) through the coming decades, as part of their Roadmap for 21st Century Chemical Engineering. These are:

  • Sustainability and Sustainable Chemical Technology
  • Health, Safety, Environment and Public Perception of Risk
  • Energy
  • Food and drink
  • Water
  • Bioprocess and Biosystems Engineering

So, are you up to the challenge? If so, why not consider a career as a Process & Chemical Engineer? The journey starts here. Make CK600PCE your first choice for an exciting, challenging and rewarding future.

Programme Overview

The BE (Hons) in Process and Chemical Engineering degree (CK600PCE) is an award winning degree, recognised as world class in the area of chemical engineering sustainability by virtue of the conferring of the ‘Sustainability Teaching Award’ by the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) in 2017.

The programme combines the essential elements of fundamental maths, physics and chemistry with relevant applied chemical engineering modules on various aspects of process engineering and industrial processing, to develop computational and design proficiency, problem-solving and presentation skills, as well as safety, ethics and sustainability. There are specialisation options in either Pharma & Biopharma or Energy & Environmental. 

The first year of the programme is largely common with the other engineering programmes (a change to/from chemical engineering may be done at the end of year one). There are electives according to the specialisation stream chosen in years 3 and 4. The course incorporates a six-month industrial placement in the second half of year 3. The programme is accredited by both Engineers Ireland and the Institution of Chemical Engineers of the UK enabling graduates to become Chartered Engineers after complying with the requirements of additional academic degrees and/or professional practice according to the regulations of Engineers Ireland, the Engineering Council of the UK, or other engineering professional association of choice. These requirements vary among such associations.

Entry Requirements

Leaving Certificate Entry Requirements

H5 in one subject, H4 in Mathematics or Applied Mathematics (if the H4 is in Applied Mathematics, a H6 in Mathematics is also required); passes in four other subjects at H or O level in the Leaving Certificate in Irish, English, one laboratory science subject (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Physics with Chemistry (Joint) or Agricultural Science) or Technology, and one other subject recognised for entry purposes. 

Students presenting with a 2016 (or previous) Leaving Certificate must present with a HC2 in Mathematics or Applied Mathematics; if the HC2 is in Applied Mathematics, a HD3 in Mathematics is also required.

Mature students: Applicants should apply directly through the CAO (www.cao.ie), include a statement of interest and may be called for interview. A H4 in Leaving Certificate Maths or Applied Maths (HC2 if presenting a pre-2017 Leaving Certificate) is required. Approximately two places are available on this course for mature applicants.

International Students should visit the International Education website.

Career Options

We have enjoyed 100% Graduate employment in the past seven+ years with many final year students receiving multiple job offers before sitting their final exams. The UCC Careers Service Destination Report 2015 shows that 0% of graduates are seeking employment six to nine months after graduation in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014 and 2015 with just 1 graduate seeking employment at the time of the survey in 2013, but employed shortly thereafter.

Chemical Process Engineers find employment in a wide range of process industries – among them pharmaceuticals, food and drink, water, cosmetics, bulk chemicals, plastics and the energy sector. A large proportion are employed by Engineering consultancy firms and these often work in teams with groups of other engineers (Electrical, Civil, Mechanical, etc) in the design, installation and commissioning of plants and processes for companies operating in the process industries.

 The work of the Chemical Process Engineer usually involves one or more of the following:

• Designing a process to produce a given product through all the stages from intake of raw materials to output of finished product.

• Designing the equipment or 'unit operations' that make up this process.

• Improving the energy efficiency of the process, the safety of the process, the quality of the product being produced and making the process more environmentally friendly by for example, reducing or recycling process waste or energy consumption.

• Developing new processes or products which will better serve the needs of society and its environment.

Work Placement

Work placement is an essential part of the BE (Hons) Process & Chemical Engineering degree programme. Students work in industry for 22 weeks between 3rd and 4th year i.e. from April to September. They undertake an engineering project on which they prepare oral presentations and written reports. Work placement provides valuable practical experience for the students, while giving the employers an opportunity to complete a worthwhile project and also to evaluate the quality of the student.

Students are available for a 5-6 month placement in the period April-September. Each student receives a wage sufficient to meet living costs. Each student is allocated to an academic supervisor in the Department of Process & Chemical Engineering who visits or contacts the student during the work placement.

The performance of the student is assessed by the industry supervisor, and by the academics following an oral presentation and a written report.  The mark for the work placement module is then included in the final year exam marks.

For further information on work placement please contact:

Dr Maria J Sousa Gallagher
School of Engineering -  Process & Chemical
University College
Cork

Phone: (021) 490 3594
Email: m.desousagallagher@ucc.ie

Placement is organised in conjunction with the UCC Careers Service.

 


Account of Work Placement - James  <<Click to Download

Account of Work Placement - Karen  <<Click to Download

Full Course Content

 

FIRST YEAR

Students take modules to the value of 60 credits, as described here.

 

SECOND YEAR 

Students take modules to the value of 60 credits, as described here.

 

THIRD YEAR 

Students take modules to the value of 60 credits, as described here.

 

FOURTH YEAR 

Students take modules to the value of 60 credits, as described here.

Why Study at UCC?

We have enjoyed 100% Graduate employment in the past seven+ years with many final year students receiving multiple job offers before sitting their final exams. The UCC Careers Service Destination Report 2015 shows that 0% of graduates are seeking employment six to nine months after graduation in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012, 2014 and 2015 with just 1 graduate seeking employment at the time of the survey in 2013, but employed shortly thereafter.

The BE Hons in Process and Chemical Engineering at UCC provides graduates with a rigorous core Chemical Process Engineering degree, but also offers specialist elective streams (in Energy & Environmental or Pharmaceutical & Biopharmaceutical) which provide the opportunity to add some specialisation in their area of interest.

Graduates are in huge demand for jobs in a wide range of areas such as in the pharmaceutical, food and other process industries, in design and manufacture of process equipment and processes, in environmental and energy related areas and with engineering consultancy firms. With something to suit everyone, you can't go wrong.

The degree provides graduates with the necessary technical and interpersonal skills to work in any process industry. There is a continuing emphasis on the development of soft skills such as teamworking, problem-solving, and presentation skills throughout the programme including a module on communication and creative problem solving skills in year two.

A six-month work placement between third year and fourth year provides undergraduates with valuable experience and insight into the work of a chemical process engineer, and helps provide them with the necessary skills and attributes to make a successful transition to a professional career following graduation.

Starting salaries are attractive (see here for Morgan McKinley Engineering Salary Survey 2017) and further career prospects are excellent. The staff are dedicated to delivering a world-class Chemical Engineering programme, and ensuring that every student gets to reach their full potential, providing a stimulating environment within a picturesque university setting. With so many excellent reasons to choose CK600PCE, what are you waiting for?

Process and Chemical Engineering

Room 312, 3rd floor, Main Campus, Food Science (Academic), Food Science Building, University College Cork

Top