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As a Mechanical Engineer what is a possible career opportunity ?

I am a senior in high school and I am interested in mechanical engineering #career #engineer #mechanical-engineering #job #mechanical

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Brad’s Answer

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As a mechanical engineer what is a possible career opportunity??? What isn't a career opportunity?!?!


What I love about mechanical engineering is that just about every product you have ever touched involves a mechanical engineer, not to mention the natural gas, electricity, and water that run to your house, the planes that fly about, the cars on the streets, and the trains on or below the ground. Medical devices like the little tool that doctors use to look in your ear or the machine that x-rays your body or scans your heart, the polishing tool that a dentist uses on your teeth, machines that manufacture food/beverages/medicine, bicycles, vacuum cleaners... the list goes on!


Not only is mechanical engineering broad in what you can do after you graduate, it's a broad subject in itself. The education gives you a great foundational knowledge of mechanisms, machines, materials, fluids, heat transfer, engineering systems and basic electronics. The mechanical engineering education also trains you to learn in a systematic and logical way, paving a path to life long learning!


Mechanical engineering is also a great foundation for graduate studies such as law school, business school, medicine, or even more engineering - these advanced degrees can also serve as a way to pivot your career in a direction of future interest.


I truly believe that by delaying important decisions until you have more information allows you to make better long term decisions. It can be a daunting challenge to decide what you want to do for the rest of your life while in high school. Mechanical engineering is a fantastic foundation with a ton of flexibility for your future - allowing you to delay your final career decision until you have more information about your true passions and interests. As you work towards your mechanical engineering degree in college, you can explore your interests and guide your career in that direction.


Coming full circle to your question, I find that mechanical engineering careers go two two basic routes:




  1. New Design: Designing new things, analyzing the performance of a system, product or part of a product. Think of this as a mechanical design engineer for almost any product that you can touch.




  2. System Engineering: Understanding, analyzing, and maintaing a system or part of a system. This is typically more of a manufacturing or plant environment for everything from consumer goods to medicine manufacturing to power plants.




I wish you luck in your decision!

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Gina’s Answer

I agree with Brad - Mechanical Engineering is an incredibly broad major that can be a stepping stone to many careers.


In addition to the two paths Brad mentioned above, I want to add that the practical understanding of the world and the rigorous problem solving skills you learn in Mechanical Engineering set you up to be valuable to companies across many industries. MechEs I went to school with have ended up in -


-Medicine (after completing a pre-med courses or having a bio-mechanical focus)
-Business Development (most did a 2-year consulting stint or an MBA after their MechEng undergrad)
-Product management (my own area - you get to define user needs and then design products, so are a bridge between the business and engineering teams)
-Product marketing/Brand management (most transitioned from the technical side of the house like into more commercial roles)
-Law (especially patent or IP lawyers)


Basically, you can turn this degree into whatever you want. It's a lot of fun as well.


Hope that helps and best of luck with your decision!

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John’s Answer

Brad and Gina's answers are right on.

As a Mechanical Engineer I've done the designing of new products, improvement of current products. Done testing of products. Became a project engineer where I led projects and program engineering manager where I led whole teams of people developing and putting into to production new products. Also, ran the quality departments to make sure products are made correctly, improved products and company processes. Became manager of teams of engineers. Production and Manufacturing Manager. Provided training to many engineers.

So, this degree can take you down many different paths!
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