Facts and Figures

The Speed Scientific School was established in 1925 as a result of an endowment from the James Breckenridge Speed Foundation, a memorial to the late James Breckenridge Speed created by his son and daughter, Dr. William S. Speed and Mrs. Olive Speed Sackett of Louisville. The income from this endowment is used exclusively as a supplementary means of support of the activities for the school.

James Breckenridge Speed (1844-1912), an industrial pioneer in the City of Louisville, was the scion of an illustrious Kentucky family. He was a leader in the establishment of Louisville ‘s street railway system. He also developed and operated large coal interests in the Commonwealth of Kentucky and was among the first to recognize the significance that Portland Cement would have in the growth of America. The industries in which he maintained an active interest until his death in 1912 have been a nucleus around which the City of Louisville and its greater metropolitan area have grown to their present industrial stature. It is fitting that his memory be perpetuated in an engineering school bearing his name.

Dr. William S. Speed and Mrs. Olive Speed Sackett contributed generously to the building of the school, having made additional grants toward the erection of the James B. Speed Building, Frederic M. Sackett Hall, and William S. Speed Hall. Mrs. Virginia Speed, wife of Dr. Speed, also contributed gifts and financial support prior to her death in 1969.

In 2003, the J.B. Speed Scientific School officially changed its name to the J.B. Speed School of Engineering.

You may already know that Speed School is one of the most established, most diverse Engineering schools in the country. Here are the numbers behind those claims.

Facts at a Glance: Fall 2023

J. B. Speed School
Year established1925
Undergraduate students1,992
Graduate students770
Master of Engineering students218
Master of Science students333
PhD students144
Total student enrollment2,775


Ethnicity Enrollment BreakdownPercentage of EnrollmentSpeed School Students
Black/African American7.32%200
Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander0.0%0
American Indian/Alaskan Native0.4%1
Non-resident Alien8.86%246
Two or More Races5.12%142


Degrees Conferred
Academic YearBSMEngMSPhDCertificates

Departmental data is available for the following: