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Career Spotlight: Engineering

A career in Engineering is an ideal path for those seeking a lucrative and challenging position that utilizes critical thinking and innovative problem-solving skills. Those with a strength for mathematics, innovative thinking and a curiosity about how things work and how to improve them are often drawn to careers in engineering. From electrical engineering to chemical, agricultural, industrial, and mechanical engineering, the engineering field employs intelligent people who play a critical role in developing new products, processes and equipment (and improving those that already exist) to improve our quality of life. Many engineers work regular office hours and are employed in laboratories, universities, government agencies, businesses, and in field research locations.
 

Degrees, Training, or Certifications Required for Engineering Careers

  • Mechanical Engineers need a Bachelor's Degree in mechanical engineering or a related field for entry-level positions. Career advancement usually requires a Master's Degree. A professional engineering license is also required.
  • Chemical Engineers need a Bachelor's Degree in chemical engineering or a related field. A professional engineering license may also be required for some positions.
  • Industrial Engineers need a Bachelor's Degree in industrial engineering or a related field.
  • Electrical Engineers need a Bachelor's Degree in electrical engineering or a related field.
  • Computer Hardware Engineers need a Bachelor's Degree in computer engineering or electrical engineering with job training.
  • Civil Engineers need a Bachelor's Degree in civil engineering for entry-level positions. Career advancement usually requires a Master's Degree. A professional engineering license is also required.
  • Biomedical Engineers need a Bachelor's Degree in biomedical engineering or may receive a Bachelor's Degree in another engineering field and get specific training on the job. A Master's Degree in biomedical engineering may be required for career advancement.
  • Aerospace Engineers need a Bachelor's Degree in aerospace engineering or a Bachelor's Degree in a related field associated with aerospace systems. Some jobs may require government security clearances.
  • Engineering Technicians in all engineering areas usually need an Associate Degree in the engineering field of their choice. Some jobs may provide on-the-job training in lieu of an Associate Degree.

 

Career Areas for Engineering Careers

Engineering careers span many areas. Some common career areas include:

  • Mechanical Engineer
  • Chemical Engineer
  • Industrial Engineer
  • Electrical Engineer
  • Computer Hardware Engineer
  • Civil Engineer
  • Biomedical Engineer
  • Biochemical Engineer
  • Aerospace Engineer
  • Mechanical Engineering Technician
  • Chemical Engineering Technician
  • Industrial Engineering Technician
  • Electrical Engineering Technician
  • Computer Engineering Technician
  • Civil Engineering Technician
  • Biomedical Engineering Technician
  • Aerospace Engineering Technician


Potential Earnings and Job Projections for Engineering Careers

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for Mechanical Engineers in 2010 was $78,160, with an expected employment increase of 9 percent between 2010 and 2020. The median annual salary for Chemical Engineers was $90,300, with expected job growth of 6 percent between 2010 and 2020. Industrial Engineers had an annual median salary of $76,100, with a growth rate of 6 percent between 2010 and 2020. Electrical Engineers had an annual median salary of $87,180, with a projected growth rate of 6 percent between 2010 and 2020. Computer Hardware Engineers had an annual median salary of $98,810 with a job growth rate of 9 percent between 2010 and 2020. Civil Engineers had an annual median salary of $77,560 with a job growth rate of 19 percent between 2010 and 2020. Biomedical Engineers had an annual median salary of $81,540 with a job growth rate of 62 percent between 2010 and 2020. Aerospace Engineers had an annual median salary of $97,480 with a job growth rate of 5 percent between 2010 and 2020.
 

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