Students working on lab projects

The Department of Chemical and Paper Engineering is comprised of three programs: ·      

  • Chemical Engineering (CHEG) 
  • Paper Engineering (PAPR)
  • Graphic and Printing Science (GPS)

    People standing outside wearing hard hats

From the inception in 1997, the chemical engineering program has grown into the largest program in the department, graduating over 35 chemical engineers per year with focus areas in life science, energy management, environmental and paper engineering.  The chemical engineering program, with the health sciences area of emphasis, offers academic paths to medical and dental schools.  Chemical engineering faculty are working closely with the WMU Medical School, creating research and teaching partnerships, including the MS program in medical engineering. The paper engineering program, which is chemical engineering applied to the paper industry, was established in 1948 as the Pulp and Paper Technology program within the Department of Chemistry. In 1953, the program became an independent department and was named Paper Science and Engineering. The paper program is unique in the state of Michigan and one of only few in the nation. The Graphic and Printing Science (imaging) program was established in 1950 as Printing Marketing and Management, but merged with the Paper Science and Engineering Department in 1989 to form the Department of Paper and Printing Science and Engineering.   It was renamed the Graphic and Printing Science program in 2010. In 2012, the faculty voted and the WMU Board of Trustees approved a name change to the Department of Chemical and Paper Engineering. Job opportunities for our graduates in southwest Michigan include companies such as Kellogg, Post, Pfizer, Zoetis, Perrigo, Stryker, Graphic Packaging, USG, Amway, Albemarle and much more.


Students and faculty standing in front of huge machinery

In addition to the chair, the department has thirteen faculty members, six staff members, and approximately 2,400 alumni. Each program has its own industry advisory board.  These advisory boards generally meet twice a year and help ensure that the programs provide graduates that meet the industry's evolving needs.

The Chemical and Paper Engineering programs are “accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org.”

The Graphic and Printing Sciences program is accredited by ACCGC.