4 answers

Is it harder to get into an engineering program because I am a female and there are a lot of males in the field naturally?

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I looked at the ratio from female:male in a typical engineering course and it is on average 2:8. So just wondering if the competition is the same no matter what or if it is different. #engineering #girls-in-stem

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4 answers

Simon’s Answer

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No not at all. Females are welcomed into engineering just like males. I’ve seem a big increase of great female engineers over the past 10-15 years. To get into an engineering school/ program you need to have good grades in math and sciences as well as good written and verbal skills. If you can get involved in team activities and/or engineering programs. Creative thinking is very helpful as well as some drawing skills. So being a female or male does not matter. Take control of your future by taking the right courses, getting good grades, and participating in teams.

Simon recommends the following next steps:

  • Start looking into engineering programs to see what interest you.
  • Take math and science courses.
  • Get involved in team projects.
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Rich’s Answer

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Absolutely the opposite.  If you have good grades and interest, you, as a female, are in much higher demand than males in engineering.  The bigger problem you (and most women have) is getting equality and parity in terms of career salary, advancement, etc.  Being a male-centric field, their continues to be bias career-wise against women not because it makes any sense, but because it has been and is. 


There are many industry groups and support groups for women in engineering.  Google search this. Get plugged into them to learn from other women in engineering on some of the issues and how to avoid them in your career.

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Ken’s Answer

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The answer to the questions is no. People are admitted into any program based upon their record of achievement. The key to being admitted is taking the correct courses in high school and working hard to get the best grades possible. It also helps to do interpersonal face to face networking, (not one way internet based disjointed one way communication) as it allows for real time dialogue and exchange of information, with people who are doing what you think that you might want to do in your career. The time to start this process should really be in middle school, but most students become involved during high school. Those who do not begin this process in high school may find themselves behind by the time they reach college. During my years in Human Relations and College Recruiting I developed some important steps, which have helped many.

Ken recommends the following next steps:

  • The first step is to take an interest and aptitude test and have it interpreted by your school counselor to see if you share the personality traits necessary to enter the field. You might want to do this again upon entry into college, as the interpretation might differ slightly due to the course offering of the school. However, do not wait until entering college, as the information from the test will help to determine the courses that you take in high school. Too many students, due to poor planning, end up paying for courses in college which they could have taken for free in high school.
  • Next, when you have the results of the testing, talk to the person at your high school and college who tracks and works with graduates to arrange to talk to, visit, and possibly shadow people doing what you think that you might want to do, so that you can get know what they are doing and how they got there. Here are some tips: ## http://www.wikihow.com/Network ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/nonawkward-ways-to-start-and-end-networking-conversations ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/4-questions-to-ask-your-network-besides-can-you-get-me-a-job?ref=carousel-slide-1 ##
  • Locate and attend meetings of professional associations to which people who are doing what you think that you want to do belong, so that you can get their advice. These associations may offer or know of intern, coop, shadowing, and scholarship opportunities. These associations are the means whereby the professionals keep abreast of their career area following college and advance in their career. Here are some tips: ## https://www.careeronestop.org/BusinessCenter/Toolkit/find-professional-associations.aspx?&frd=true ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/9-tips-for-navigating-your-first-networking-event ##
  • It is very important to express your appreciation to those who help you along the way to be able to continue to receive helpful information and to create important networking contacts along the way. Here are some good tips: ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/the-informational-interview-thank-you-note-smart-people-know-to-send?ref=recently-published-2 ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/3-tips-for-writing-a-thank-you-note-thatll-make-you-look-like-the-best-candidate-alive?bsft_eid=7e230cba-a92f-4ec7-8ca3-2f50c8fc9c3c&bsft_pid=d08b95c2-bc8f-4eae-8618-d0826841a284&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=daily_20171020&utm_source=blueshift&utm_content=daily_20171020&bsft_clkid=edfe52ae-9e40-4d90-8e6a-e0bb76116570&bsft_uid=54658fa1-0090-41fd-b88c-20a86c513a6c&bsft_mid=214115cb-cca2-4aec-aa86-92a31d371185&bsft_pp=2 ##
  • Here are some important sites to visit to allow you to understand the various areas of engineering: ## ## https://www.engineergirl.org/ ## ## http://www.futureengineers.org/ ## ## https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43zVcmTJSKM ##
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Jennifer’s Answer

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Not at all. I would even say there may be some advantage to being a female as there are often specific scholarships available to female engineering students to encourage the minority population in that field.

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