Frequently Asked Questions (and answers from a student's perspective)
General Dual Degree Questions
- How long does the Dual Degree Program last?
- Can I do the program in less time?
- Is it worth staying in school for five years to get an extra degree?
- How well does Covenant prepare you for Georgia Tech?
- What is the best thing about the dual degree program?
- What is the worst thing about the dual degree program?
- Do I need a graduate degree in order to be marketable in the engineering world?
- Is it better to do the Dual Degree Program or to get a degree from another university and then go on to graduate school at Georgia Tech?
- Is co-oping an option with the Dual Degree Program?
- Can I do architecture as part of the Dual Degree Program?
- Can I do the Dual Degree Program with a school besides Georgia Tech?
- Who do I contact for more information about this program?
Questions About the Covenant End of the Program
- What classes do I have to take as part of the Dual Degree Program?
- Are there any differences in the curriculum for Dual Degree students from the traditional Covenant students?
- If I know what type of engineering I want to do, how should I modify my schedule to meet my needs?
- What is the intercultural experience that Covenant requires, and what do engineering students typically do to fulfill that requirement?
Questions About the Transistion Period Between the Two Schools
- What do you have to do in order to get into Georgia Tech?
- When should I apply to Georgia Tech?
- What transfers to Georgia Tech?
- How much does Georgia Tech cost compared to Covenant?
Questions About the Georgia Tech End of the Program
- Where is Georgia Tech located?
- What is campus life like at Georgia Tech?
- Where can I learn more about life and school at Tech?
- Are there any Christian organizations on Tech's campus?
- Where do you live while you are at Georgia Tech?
General Dual Degree Questions
How long does the Dual Degree Program last?
The Dual Degree Program is set up so that the student will spend three years at Covenant College taking the math and science courses that are fundamental to an engineering education. Then they will spend about two years at Georgia Tech or another approved engineering school taking the more specialized engineering classes. In all, the program is designed to last five years.
Can I do the program in less time?
Any engineering program is very intense, and the Dual Degree Program is no exception. Most students find that, especially after transferring to Georgia Tech, the courses become very time consuming. The addition of a summer term to the traditional two years has been found to be, in some cases, necessary to finish off the courses that could not be finished in four semesters at Georgia Tech. Therefore, it is not likely that the program will be completed in under five years.
Is it worth staying in school for five years to get an extra degree?
Absolutely. First of all, it is important to realize that going straight to a four-year engineering program will not necessarily mean that you will graduate in four years. Georgia Tech statistics show that only 40% (give or take a couple of percentage points) of the incoming freshmen graduate after four years. After five years, only about 80% of the students have graduated. This is due to the very stringent and difficult nature of engineering programs. Large, heavily-concentrated engineering class loads are extremely hard to do. In all actuality, it is possible that going to Covenant for the five year program could get you out sooner and even make your work load lighter.
The addition of a liberal arts degree to an engineering degree speaks volumes about who you are and what you are like. One of the critical values that employers look for when hiring new employees is the job candidate's ability to communicate well and work well with others. Employers are not just looking for people who can crunch numbers, but they are looking for people with personalities as well. Covenant's liberal arts nature will expose you to great works of literature and philosophy and will help you to learn to think critically. At the same time, you will be learning all this from a solid, Christ-centered worldview -- the value of which, you will not even begin to be able to measure.
How well does Covenant prepare you for Georgia Tech?
Georgia Tech has the reputation of being one of the hardest schools in the nation. However, Covenant students fare very well at Georgia Tech. In fact, most Covenant students tend to do better at Georgia Tech than they did at Covenant, and they are typically among the best students in each of their classes, even consistently making the Dean's List and even Faculty Honors (4.0 semester GPA). The Covenant training is more than adequate for preparing you for an institution like Georgia Tech, or any other school in the nation.
What is the best thing about the Dual Degree Program?
Probably the single greatest aspect of the Dual Degree Program is that it gives you the best of both worlds. If you opt to go to Georgia Tech at the end of your three years at Covenant, then you really will experience absolute extremes in every way in your college experience. Covenant is a very good liberal arts school; Tech is simply one of the best engineering schools in the world. Covenant is a small school where it is easy to get to know so many people on an intimate basis; Tech is a very large school where you will have the opportunity to meet someone new everyday. Covenant is an immense opportunity to help your faith in God grow due to all the quality, biblical teaching and Christ-centered atmosphere; Tech is a secular school where your faith can grow even more by standing up for what you believe in and actively pursuing a relationship with God (and the three years of foundation time spent at Covenant are extremely helpful in doing this). At Covenant, you can watch a soccer game and cheer on every player by name because you know them personally; at Tech, you can sit four rows from the end zone of a highly-anticipated, nationally-televised college football game. Covenant's campus is high up on a beautiful mountain (but not too far from a city); Tech is in the heart of Atlanta - one of the most important cities in the Southeast. To top it all off, you get a liberal arts degree from Covenant, indicating that you are well rounded, and you get one of the most respected engineering degrees possible.
What is the worst thing about the Dual Degree Program?
The hardest aspect of the program is that you have to leave Covenant after only three years, when most of your friends who came in at the same time still have another year left. However, you know right from the beginning that this will be the case, so you are mentally prepared for it when the time comes. Also, the campus of Georgia Tech is only 1 hour and 45 minutes to the campus of Covenant College, so the trip is not very long, and it seems as though Dual Degree students are constantly coming back up to Covenant to visit.
Do I need a graduate degree in order to be marketable in the engineering world?
In the past few years, the engineering market has moved towards desiring employees who have a master's degree. However, it is not necessary to immediately pursue advanced degrees or to even pursue them at all. Very high-paying and quality jobs are common to those who have only a bachelor's degree. It should be noted, though, that having a master's degree allows for faster advancement in a company, higher pay, and also the possibility of working on tasks that are typically more enjoyable. A Master of Science in engineering can typically be achieved in approximately a year and a half. Others, who are more interested in the business aspects of their company, find it helpful to return to school after a few years of experience to get a Masters of Business Administration (MBA).
Is it better to do the Dual Degree Program or to get a degree from another university and then go on to graduate school at Georgia Tech?
The Dual Degree Program still has two major advantages. The first is that you would be missing out on the Christian training and a liberal arts degree. The second is that it may be harder to get into a good graduate level program if you do not go to a top ranked undergraduate university. Since Georgia Tech's graduate program is even more prestigious than its undergraduate program, getting accepted when coming from an outside university can be highly competitive. However, schools like Georgia Tech love to retain their undergraduates for graduate work, so it is much, much easier to be accepted after having attended Georgia Tech as an undergraduate. The same basically goes for all other institutions of high caliber. Unless your GRE scores are very high, your grades are very impressive, and you have incredible recommendations, your likelihood of getting into a place like Georgia Tech when coming from a small, lesser-known institution are not nearly as high.
Is co-oping an option with the Dual Degree Program?
Yes. Covenant has had a co-op program with Astec that many Dual Degree students have found particularly rewarding and helpful in deciding a career path. Also, upon entering Georgia Tech, Dual Degree students are eligible for enrollment in the co-op program. More details about Georgia Tech's co-op program can be found at www.coop.gatech.edu.
Can I do architecture as part of the Dual Degree Program?
The architecture program is not covered by the Dual Degree Program in engineering. Due to the very stringent and artistic nature of architecture, it is generally advisable that someone wanting to do architecture go directly to a school offering an architecture degree.
Can I do the Dual Degree Program with a school besides Georgia Tech?
Any school that is approved by Covenant can be used in the second leg of the Dual Degree Program, but you should make sure that Covenant approves it before gearing your entire studies towards that other institution.
Who do I contact for more information about this program?
In order to get specific questions answered about the Dual Degree Program, you should contact Covenant's Dr. Stern.
Questions About the Covenant Leg of the Program
What classes do I have to take as part of the Dual Degree Program?
A listing of all of the class requirements for the Covenant leg of the program are listed under the course requirements page of this web site, and this site also includes a recommended schedule for fulfilling those course requirements while at Covenant. Most of the course requirements for your specific major at Georgia Tech can be found on each of those department web pages. A listing of links to each of these pages can be found on the types of engineering page of this web site.
Are there any differences in the curriculum for Dual Degree students from the traditional Covenant students?
The pertinent information is listed under the course requirements page of this web site. The main differences that apply to Dual Degree students while at Covenant are that by taking either HIS 111 or HIS 112 - U.S. History, which is a Georgia Tech requirement, Dual Degree students do not have to take HIS 325 - Twentieth Century World History.
If I know what type of engineering I want to do, how should I modify my schedule to meet my needs?
The recommended class schedule that is given on this website is highly modifiable. Some specific changes that can be made are as follows (specific to Georgia Tech):
- For computer, electrical, and industrial engineers, at least two semesters of computer programming are recommended.
- For computer engineers, as many programming classes as possible will prove helpful.
- Thermodynamics, which is offered on an occasional basis at Covenant, would be good for mechanical and industrial engineers to take.
- A course in electrical circuits is taught on an occasional basis that would be good for non-computer and non-electrical engineers to take. Computer and electrical engineers will have a more specific class in electrical circuits that should be taken while at Georgia Tech.
- If possible, industrial engineers could take General Psychology while at Covenant to alleviate some of the burden while at Georgia Tech.
What is the intercultural experience that Covenant requires, and what do engineering students typically do to fulfill that requirement?
One of Covenant's educational goals is to help you to learn how to adapt to and understand other cultures. As a result, each student is required to participate in a cross-cultural experience while they are at Covenant. There are many different options on how to fulfill this, ranging from working on a short-term missions trip over one of your Spring Breaks (a program which is known as Break On Impact) to even spending a semester abroad studying in some other university, such as Oxford. More details can be found on Covenant's website. What can engineering students do to fulfill this requirement? Any of the options open to all students are open to you.
Questions About the Transition Period Between the Two Schools
What do you have to do in order to get into Georgia Tech?
Transfer requirements and applications for admission can be found at www.transfer.gatech.edu. A summary of the requirements that apply to Dual Degree students is as follows:
- Transfer students should have at least a GPA of 3.0 for all applicants (3.3 for some high-demand departments).
- Their GPA's for math and science courses should follow the same distribution.
It is also important to note that being in the Dual Degree program does not automatically mean that you will be admitted to an engineering school, but Covenant students do have a high acceptance rate. You must also fill out a transfer student application. For those entering Georgia Tech in a Fall term, applications are due by May 1.
To indicate that you are a Dual Degree student, you should fill out the online Dual Degree Recommendation form when you do the transfer application.
When should I apply to Georgia Tech?
It is typically recommended that Covenant students apply to transfer to Georgia Tech in the Fall semester of their Junior year. The deadlines change from year to year, but typically open about January 15 for those wanting to start in a Fall semester and August 1 for those wanting to start in a Spring semester.
What transfers to Georgia Tech?
A complete listing of the transfer equivalencies can be found here, which is a part of Georgia Tech's oscarweb. You should click on the Transfer Equivalencies Link and navigate to Covenant College.
How much does Georgia Tech cost compared to Covenant? Covenant and Georgia Tech are roughly the same in price for out-of-state students. Georgia Tech can actually be less expensive for in-state students.
Questions About the Georgia Tech Leg of the Program
Where is Georgia Tech located?
Georgia Tech is located in the heart of Atlanta in the area known as Midtown. The campus of Georgia Tech is immediately adjacent to the juncture of I-75 and I-85.
What is campus life like at Georgia Tech?
Georgia Tech has just over 15,000 undergraduate students and 11,000 graduate students. Of that, the vast majority of students are studying some type of engineering. Georgia Tech is also a school rich in NCAA Division I athletics with a consistently top 25 ranked football team, a consistently top 10 ranked baseball team, and an ACC basketball team that occasionally finds itself involved in March Madness.
Where can I learn more about life and school at Tech?
There are several different links that are essential to learning about life and academia at Georgia Tech. Besides the list of department homepages listed on the types of engineering page, here is a list of other important sites.
- www.gatech.edu -- Georgia Tech's homepage
- https://oscar.gatech.edu/ -- A listing of virtually all important concerns at Georgia Tech. This has school calendars, class schedules, housing information, transfer equivalencies, links to the library, the bursar's office, and the registrar, and the ever-so-important registration.
- http://www.gatech.edu/life -- The source of information for all life in and around Georgia Tech, including links to all the campus organizations.
- http://factbook.gatech.edu/quick-facts/ -- This is a link with a lot of handy and fun information about Georgia Tech. It includes a lot of stories and explanations about the traditions of Georgia Tech and what Tech students consider important.
Are there any Christian organizations on Tech's campus?
Georgia Tech's campus is actually very rich in its presence of Christianity. Some of the Christian organizations that can be found on Tech's campus are Reformed University Fellowship (RUF), Cru, Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, Westminster Christian Fellowship, and Baptist Student Union.
Where do you live while you are at Georgia Tech?
Housing options are available to Dual Degree students. These forms should be turned in to Georgia Tech by May 1 if you plan on attending starting in a Fall semester.
Most students, however, opt to live off campus while at Tech. There is ample housing in the immediate vicinity, especially in an area immediately adjacent to Tech's campus known as Home Park. While you are at Covenant, you will undoubtedly get to know the other engineering students. It is very helpful to stay in contact with the older students, even after they have gone to Georgia Tech since they may know of housing openings, or they may even have housing openings for you when it is your time to come down to Atlanta.