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California has a nice showing in the nation's top engineering programs

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(Los Alamos National Laboratory engineer Venkat Rao Dasari discusses smart grid technology at the lab, in Los Alamos, N.M. Los Alamos is helping the state of New Mexico with a smart grid proposal for federal money. (AP Photo/Los Alamos National Laboratory)

While the top dog in the US News and World Report rankings for graduate, engineering programs in the nation (MIT) comes as no surprise, two California schools follow closely behind in the top five programs.

Stanford University (2) highlights five themes that define the engineering program: biomedicine, computational engineering, design, energy, and multi-scale engineering.. The programs are broken into groups such as biomechanical engineering (BME), design, flow physics & computation (FPCE), mechanics & computation, and thermosciences.

Berkeley’s College of Engineering (3) focuses on a tradition of impact in research and teaching, its reputation, and an internationally recognized faculty. Berkeley graduates have been instrumental in bringing water to California's agricultural lands, pioneering the microelectronics that laid the foundations for Silicon Valley, and helping build impressive structures like Hoover Dam and the Golden Gate Bridge.

Rounding out the top five are Georgia Institute of Technology (4) and University of Illinois: Urbana-Champaign (5). Carnegie Mellon ranked sixth, with two California schools tying for seventh. CalTech’s Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences tied with the Viterbi School of Engineering at USC.

California programs ranked in the top 20 include a trio of UC schools: UC San Diego (tied 12), UCLA (tied 14), and UC Santa Barbara (tied 18). The University of California representation continues further down with UC Davis (33), UC Irvine (tied 35), UC Riverside (tied 62), and UC Santa Cruz (tied 86).

For more information about topics of interest to graduate students, check out:

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Janelle Jalbert is the founder of Edusistance and the creator of the Race to College Success program. She has been an educator and advisor for more than a decade. You can reach Janelle by email, follow her on Twitter @RacetoCollege or @edusistance, and add yourself as a fan of the Race to College Success Facebook page.

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