Career training & job qualifications for engineers

All entry level engineering jobs require a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering, however those who graduate in Physical science or Mathematics in college can qualify for certain high demand engineering specialties. Electrical, Electronic, Mechanical and Civil engineering are the most popular fields but engineers trained in one field can easily work in related fields; lots of Mechanical engineers go into Aerospace. This flexibility helps employers to fill in positions for new specialization and technology for which there may be less supply. It also helps engineers to change or shift from one branch to another to take advantage of their own interests as well as good employment opportunities.

Most of the engineering studies offer concentration of study in the student’s chosen specialty along with courses in mathematics and science. A design course as well as a computer or laboratory class is included in most programs.

Most colleges also offer a two-or four- year course in Engineering Technology, added to the standard Engineering degree. Rather than focusing on theoretical and scientific knowledge, these courses (which include various practical laboratory classes) focus on current issues and prepare students for designing and production work in a more practical sense. Thus, four-year Graduate students can secure jobs identical to the jobs obtained by students who graduate in the bachelor’s degree in Engineering. Graduates of Engineering Technology are not, however, allowed to register as professional engineers under the same regulations as graduates with engineering degrees. Engineering technology graduates are sometimes viewed as having skills which lie between that of a technician and that of an engineer by prospective employers.

Most of the entry-level engineering jobs do not require graduate training; however, it is essential for engineering faculty and research and development jobs. Graduate degrees in engineering or business administration are pursued by many engineering professional to acquaint themselves with the latest technology and to widen their horizons. Many top executives in the government and in industries had begun their careers as engineers.

It is essential that prospective students study the college curriculum and check accreditations before selecting a college because around 580 universities deal with engineering sciences. Around 340 colleges offer Bachelor’s degrees and are accredited by the ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) and around 240 universities offer accredited Bachelor’s degrees in Engineering Technology. ABET accreditation depends on the success of student achievement within the program, the improvement, faculty, content of curriculum, the facilities provided as well as the commitment of the institution. Although the major branches of engineering are offered by all universities, the small branches are offered by a small number of colleges. Even the content in each program may vary from university to university. Some engineering programs focus on practical knowledge, preparing students for jobs in a specific industry, while others use a more theoretical approach and prepare students for graduate studies. Hence it is important for students to examine the curricula meticulously before applying for a college.

Undergraduate engineering college require, as admission criterion, a solid background in mathematics (namely in algebra, geometry, trigonometry, calculus etc), sciences (like biology, chemistry, physics) and knowledge of English, Social Sciences, Humanities and Information Technology. Although most bachelor degree programs are four year courses, it usually takes a student around four to five years to complete their Graduation. Mathematics, basic sciences, introduction to engineering, humanities and social studies are taught in the first two years and the major courses (concentrating on a specialization) is taught in the remaining two years. For instance, the last two years of Aerospace engineering may include courses in fluid mechanics, heat transfer, applied aerodynamics, analytical mechanics, flight vehicle design, trajectory dynamics, and aerospace propulsion systems. Some Engineering schools, however, offer basic engineering courses; students are then expected to specialize in Graduate studies or on the job.

There are certain engineering schools which have agreements with two year colleges who provide the initial training of the first two years and then take in students for studies in their remaining two years. Also, certain college arrangements allow a student to spend three years in a liberal arts college pursuing pre-engineering courses and spend two years in an engineering college studying core subjects, and receive a bachelor’s degree from each college. There are some schools which offer five year Master’s degree programs and others which offer five or six year cooperative plans which integrate theoretical and practical teachings and afford the students impressive experience while helping tem earn their way through college.

Licenses are required for engineering professionals in all the 50 states and the District of Columbia, if their services are offered directly to the public. Licensed engineers are called Professional Engineers (PE). A degree from an ABET accredited engineering college, four years of practical and pertinent work experience as well as passing in a State examination are required for a license. The licensing process can be handled in two stages by a recent graduate. The first exam—Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) can be completed after graduation. Students who pass this examination are called Engineering Interns (EI) or Engineers in Training (EIT) and call take the second test after work experience. This is the Principles and Practice of Engineering exam. In case students need to re apply for licensing, there are certain continuing education required imposed by many states. States recognize licensures from other states if the other state has license conditions which equal or exceed those of their own state. A lot of Civil, Electrical, Mechanical and Chemical engineer are licensed PEs.

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