Princeton University

School of Engineering & Applied Science

School of Engineering and Applied Science

About Us

Welcome to Princeton’s Department of Electrical Engineering. We are one of six departments within Princeton’s School of Engineering and Applied Science. The School is set within a major liberal arts university, yet is small in scale compared to most engineering schools of a similar reputation. Princeton faculty members are dedicated scholars committed to the advancement of knowledge. They’re also dedicated teachers and mentors of undergraduate and graduate students. We have a very distinguished team of faculty members. Several are members of the National Academies, and most are Fellows of various professional societies. Many of our faculty have won both prestigious research awards and awards for their teaching contributions. Additional details on our faculty can be found under the People navigation above. Our distinctive four-year undergraduate degree program leads to an ABET-accredited Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree. The program combines rigorous training in engineering fundamentals and applications with elective courses in entrepreneurship and the liberal arts. It attracts undergraduates who want to study electrical engineering and also gain a broad base of knowledge in a liberal-arts context. For additional information on our undergraduate program, please explore the pages in the Undergraduate navigation above. Our graduate program emphasizes the highest quality in graduate education and research. The main component of the program, the doctoral (Ph.D.) program, prepares students for a variety of careers in research, teaching, and advanced development. The program is intimately connected to our research program and emphasizes forward-looking research fields. The program is outlined in greater detail in several pages under the Graduate navigation above. The Department has a vibrant and diverse research program that encompasses a wide range of areas and several interdisciplinary fields. Our research and teaching programs are enhanced by strong ties to research institutes and centers at Princeton including the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment; the Princeton Research Institute for the Science and Technology of Materials (PRISM); the program in Applied and Computational Mathematics; the Princeton Center For Complex Materials (PCCM); the Center for Mid-InfraRed Technologies for Health and the Environment (MIRTHE); and the Gigascale Systems Research Center (GSRC). We invite you to learn more about our current research and the specific research interests of the faculty by following the links under the People and Research navigation above.

Historical Note

Princeton's Electrical Engineering Program, one of the first in the United States, was formed in 1889 under the guidance of Professor Cyrus Fogg Brackett, an early expert in telephony, magnetism, and incandescent light. Today, the department occupies the portion of the Engineering Quadrangle (E-Quad) known as Brackett Hall, as well as adjoining areas. Important contributors to the field have worked at Princeton from its earliest history. To quote from "Engineering at Princeton," a publication printed in 1940:

In 1873 Cyrus Fogg Brackett came to Princeton to occupy a new professorship of physics founded in honor of Professor Joseph Henry, who had meantime gone to Washington to organize the Smithsonian Institution. A pioneer in the field of electricity in this country and an early adviser to Thomas A. Edison, Professor Brackett was also a leading expert in the vast amount of litigation connected with the invention and development of the telephone.

Joseph Henry gave his name to the unit of inductance. Professor Brackett was probably the first professor in the world to have a classroom illuminated by electricity. In 1880 he constructed a dynamo and battery system to light carbon filament lamps in his classroom. Professor Brackett's activities led to the formation of the Department of Electrical Engineering in 1889.