How to Get Started in Engineering

How to Get Started in Engineering
Beth Dumbauld

Considering a career in engineering? Smart move - particularly if career growth, stability, and job opportunity are important to you. There are a variety of career paths in engineering and your income prospects are excellent.

The number of STEM jobs (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) is projected to grow more than 9 million between 2012 and 2022. College graduates with an engineering degree earn higher-than-average salaries. According to a recent National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) study, the average salary for college graduates earning engineering degrees is $64,891– the highest average salary for all academic majors.

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What Do You Do with a Degree in Engineering?

Create. Design. Tear down. Build up. Build big. Build small. Speed up. Slow down. Rethink. Process. Analyze. Invent. And repeat. In other words, what you do with an engineering degree is: imagine, make, and do. Engineers apply their knowledge of how things work and make things work better.

Engineers turn ideas into reality. Almost every single thing we use every day has been engineered in some way. Almost every technological innovation has, at some point or another, been placed under the care of someone with a degree in engineering. For that next big thing, that person could be you.

Many who enter the engineering field do so because they are fascinated by how things work, and they also know that the career opportunities in the engineering field continue to grow. If you are looking for a job that can have a positive impact on you personally and professionally, you don’t have to look any further than a career in engineering.

Tips for Getting Started with a Career in Engineering

If you are a working adult who needs a flexible class schedule, or just someone who is looking to save significant money towards the cost of earning a college degree, you’re in luck. The general education courses you need to complete in math, science, and technology to earn a degree in engineering are affordably available online.

Online engineering courses give you the ability to study at your own pace, and take classes where and whenever you want. Whether you need to take prerequisites like college algebra or calculus online, or courses in English composition, physics, or chemistry – you can start building confidence by completing gateway math and science courses early on, before enrolling in your engineering degree program.

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Your Engineering Degree Checklist

These are the important qualities that successful engineers demonstrate. Employers, in particular, key in on these skills and traits when making hiring decisions. Before pursuing engineering courses online or on-campus, you will want to ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you have good communication skills? Verbal and written?
  • Are you able to work well within a team?
  • Do you have a strong work ethic?
  • Are you motivated and willing to take initiative?
  • Do you have a flexible mindset? Are you adaptable under changing conditions?
  • Do you possess strong analytical skills?
  • Do you have strong computer skills?
  • Are you detail-oriented?
  • Are you self-confident?
  • Do you enjoy working with others?

If you answered yes to most of these questions, there’s a good chance that a career in engineering is an excellent match for your skills – and that you do have what it takes to earn your degree in engineering.

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