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An Interdisciplinary Facilities Engineering Technology Graduate Course

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.79.1 - 4.79.7

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Paper Authors

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William E. DeWitt

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William J. Hutzel

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Timothy L. Skvarenina

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1333

An Interdisciplinary Facilities Engineering Technology Graduate Course

William J. Hutzel, William E. DeWitt, and Timothy L. Skvarenina Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN


A new graduate course called “Facilities Engineering Technology” is addressing the growing demand for multi-skill employees who can solve problems associated with mechanical and electrical systems in buildings. Identifying energy conservation measures and evaluating their economic impact is an important focus of the course for both mechanical and electrical systems.


Facilities engineering is becoming an important career option for students in the Purdue School of Technology. The continuing boom in industrial and commercial construction, along with an increased emphasis on energy efficiency, has helped create a strong demand for technicians and engineers who manage mechanical and electrical equipment in modern commercial buildings. In fact, the Office of Manpower Studies within the School of Technology projects that facilities engineering will be one of the fastest growing technical careers over the next ten years.1

Figure 1 illustrates the technical skills needed by today’s facility engineer.2 Although mechanical and electrical skills are essential, the distinction between the two is becoming obscured by the increased use of instrumentation and computer controls for building management. A facilities manager with a mechanical background should understand how power quality impacts the performance of mechanical equipment. In contrast, a facilities engineer with an electrical background needs to understand how variable speed fans influence indoor air quality. The demand for multi-skill facility engineers who possess mechanical, electrical, and controls expertise will continue to increase as energy efficiency becomes a more important topic.

Mechanical Electrical

Instrument & Control

Figure 1. Today’s facilities engineer uses several technical disciplines.

DeWitt, W. E., & Hutzel, W. J., & Skvarenina, T. L. (1999, June), An Interdisciplinary Facilities Engineering Technology Graduate Course Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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