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WHat are some companies that mechanical engineers work for

Well I am about to go into the 11th grade and I believe that I have my mind set on the career that I am going into but one thing that I may want to know is what are the best steps in becoming a successful mechanical engineer and what other jobs may be somewhat similar so that I could put in the my thoughts to widen my job spectrum? #mechanical engineer #mechanical-engineering

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Kenneth’s Answer

Mechanical Engineers could end up working for any company that designs, builds or uses any kind of machinery. Think about something as simple as a metal folding chair:
- somebody designed the shape of the chair, where the hinges would need to be, how thick to make the metal to support your weight when you sit down
- that designer then gave that information (all the dimensions, what kind of metal to use, etc.) to a manufacturing engineer, who would know how best to mass-produce the design. That engineer came up with the plan to make the chair - will we cut all the little pieces out of one flat piece of metal and attach them together, or can I stamp out the same shape and reduce the need to cut lots of little pieces that have to be attached. The designer told us we need a bend piece of metal with a hole in it, but is it better to fold it first and then drill the hole, or drill the hole first and then bend it?
- another engineer evaluated all the different ways you could make the same chair and how much it would cost
- a different engineer designed the machine that stamps out the metal pieces and drills the holes. Their company sold the machine to people that make chairs, but they also sell the machines to car companies that need to make doors for your pickup truck.
- another mechanical engineer works for a company that rents party supplies and advised the owner what the best chairs to buy are based on knowing how different chairs are designed, built and which ones will last the longest for the best price (OK, maybe this last one is a bit of an exaggeration - but it's not far from the truth).

When I was in undergrad, I thought I wanted to either design the mechanical aspects of cars or work in a factory that made the cars. I wound up working for the local utility company giving them advice on which cars to buy based on how well they were designed or constructed.

Kenneth recommends the following next steps:

Check out the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) - they're a good resource for engineers while in school and even after, so that you can stay up on the latest technology developments .
Check out the ASME job webpage where you can read descriptions - https://jobsearch.asme.org/
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Dan’s Answer

The most common ones are aerospace/defense and large machinery. Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, Northrop Grumman, General Atomics in the defense space and the car companies, Caterpillar, John Deere, etc in the machinery space. There are tons of small companies that hire MEs as well. Each metro area tends to have a specific industry that hires most of the mechanical engineers too. High tech in the Bay Area, aerospace/defense in Baltimore/Washington, large machinery in the Midwest.

Another route you can go is the construction/buildings route which is quite different. Then you're dealing more with HVAC and plumbing, or you can go into energy/LEED/green building design.

Anything in the construction field is quite similar to ME from what I know. You're dealing with drawings, producing something, planning thoroughly, dealing with paperwork, and doing a bunch of math.
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Jennifer’s Answer

It also goes beyond large machinery! I know I personally had no interest in aerospace or engines, and though those are common examples they are not the only thing. Mechanical engineering trains an individual to understand how stress/forces move through physical objects, and tries best to teach us how to understand/predict behavior based on it. Anywhere that does that could benefit from an engineer.

Some other examples:

-Medical Devices - Medtronic, DARPA, Johnson & Johnson
-Materials Science (how do we make materials with specific properties? What strength/shapes can we achieve?) -3M is a big one
-Robotics
- Aerospace/Aviation - Pratt and Whitney, Sikorsky, Boeing

What I've seen to be a similar career is potentially Industrial Design; it is like a manufacturing engineer (who designs the assembly processes) but a bit more creative and aesthetic oriented; focuses on the user experience a lot more. Will the grip be ergonomic? How could we best make this? Does it speak to our design language? Etc

Another is Human Factors Engineering, which focuses on the efficacy of item use. This engineer is essential in developing a use case for devices; how will people interact with it? This field is more in the realm of designing systems and requirements for devices than the physical device. But there is also a greater impact to the final product potentially, and a very direct path to helping other people. They answer questions like: Is this button too hard/too easy to press? How often will a surgeon stress the device? How will this feature be used, when, and under what conditions?

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John’s Answer

I work for a Medical Device Manufacturer and many of our Engineers are Mechanical Engineers. Most people assume that they would be Biomedical Engineers, but since Surgeon's tools are mechanical in nature most of the time, the talents of a Mechanical Engineer is valuable. So you get to use your skills to help save people's lives every day.
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John’s Answer

I work for a Medical Device Manufacturer and many of our Engineers are Mechanical Engineers. Most people assume that they would be Biomedical Engineers, but since Surgeon's tools are mechanical in nature most of the time, the talents of a Mechanical Engineer is valuable. So you get to use your skills to help save people's lives every day.
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