Civil & environmental engineering receives grants to upgrade educational equipment

April 19, 2021

The Richard A. Rula School of Civil & Environmental Engineering at Mississippi State has earned more than $158,000 in grants from the Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors 2021 Educational Grant Program.

SurveyingThe funds will be used to upgrade equipment within the school to support laboratory and classroom instruction.

The funds we received from this grant are being used to augment new instructional equipment we are obtaining for the Richard A. Rula Engineering and Science Building which is nearing completion,” said Dennis Truax, director of the Rula School. “We appreciate the Board awarding us these competitively sought funds as they will have a positive impact on students in our program for many years to come.”

The Rula School will receive $35,430 specifically for new surveying equipment and $122,832 for classroom and laboratory equipment for the new Rula Engineering and Science Complex, which is expected to open later this year. With $158,262 in grant funding, the Bagley College of Engineering earned more than half of the $300,000 that the MBLPES will disperse this year.

Adding departmental funds to the two grants, the Rula School plans to invest nearly $170,000 in new educational equipment this year.

2021 marks the third year of the MBLPES grant program. In 2016, MSU’s civil & environmental engineering program received $220,643 for new equipment. In 2019, the school was awarded $141,690 in grant funds. All told, using a combination of MBLPES grants and departmental funds, the Rula School of Civil & Environmental Engineering will have invested nearly $600,000 in surveying and engineering equipment since 2016.

“The enrollment and number of graduates from the program have steadily grown over the past two decades,” Truax added. “Over the past decade, total enrollment has increased by over forty percent. This has resulted in increased need for laboratory equipment so that students continue to get a personal experience through experiential learning.”

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors received legislative approval to award a total of $300,000 in grants for engineering and surveying educational programs that lead to professional licensure. Funds from the grant program may be used for the purchase of instructional equipment, including items such as computers, survey equipment, laboratory equipment and library resources.

Mississippi State’s Bagley College of Engineering is online at and can be found on FacebookTwitter, Instagram and YouTube at @msuengineering.

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By Philip Allison