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What's better an engineer or an master electrician

I'm asking this because I'd like to go into both of these but I'm not sure. #engineer #electrician

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Michael’s Answer


It really depends on what kind of leader you want to be in your career. I don't know much about master electricians, so take what I say with a grain of salt. I will be speaking about master electricians as a master in a trade (i.e. like a master welder, pipe fitter, scaffolder, etc,etc).

As a master electrician, you would most likely be part of a unionized contracted crew on a specific project. Once this project ends, you may start a new contract with a different company on a different project. In my industry, a master electrician would be equivalent to the person managing a team of less experience electricians to run wire, install junction boxes, install hardware like circuit breakers and overloads, etc etc. The master electrician would have extensive knowledge of the regulations (code) and can provide feedback to the project management team with possible changes to meet the regulatory code. This person would not do the design and would only manage his/her crew to meet the customers expectations and finish the job safely and correctly.

Contrary to this, the electrical engineer is the person coming up with the plans and telling the master electrician what to do. The electrical engineer would deeply understand theory and would become a technical leader for design of power systems (turbines generators, transformers, etc etc). As an electrical engineer, you would be the one developing ground breaking technology with other engineers and scientists. The electrical engineer tells the master electrician what his and his team must do, and while the master electrician can provide feedback that what he/she is being asked to do is not industry standard/normal, it is the electrical engineer who has the last say because he/she understands the theory.

I have met "master electricians" that decided to go to school and get their degree in electrical engineering because they found they were limited in their career without understanding of the theory. These people can become extremely valuable because they have such a deep understanding of how things operate and fail in the field and can then apply that knowledge to design. By this time however, you would have accrued enough experience as an electrical engineer to become a technical manager.

Thank you for the information Gilberto C.