Drew Peake, MSME, M.Eng., MBA, PE, FNAFE, DEE, CIH, CSP
The first two years of engineering school will be very much the same regardless of discipline. That will offer a taste of all the fields. You really don't need to make up your mind until then. Let your enjoyment of one or more courses guide your choice. If you change your mind after you graduate, you can easily qualify for another discipline with a Graduate Degree.
I am a Forensic Engineer. I graduated with a BS and MEng in Environmental Engineering and worked for US EPA for 12 years before going into private practice. I earned my MBA to benefit my business. My clients needed someone with expertise in Environmental Health and Safety, so I got Board Certified in each of those disciplines (DEE, CIH, CSP). I had always wondered about Mechanical Engineering, so I returned to the University to earn the MSME. I am currently studying for a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Engineering. I get to use those several expertises in the cases I handle. I've done railcar derailings, fall into pulp mill vat, chemical exposure from the flavorings at a bakery plant, etc.
Engineering is fun! However, if you graduate, start work, and decide you don't like engineering, you have many good alternatives. Engineers have the highest rate of success getting into Medical School of any discipline (from an old MCAT study guide). I expect the same is true of Law and Business Schools, and probably any professional school.
Whatever field you choose, make sure the curriculum is accredited by the American Board for Accreditation of Engineering and Technology.
Drew recommends the following next steps:
Both on-campus and online engineering programs usually provide specialization options and opportunities to earn dual engineering degrees, especially for related engineering disciplines. Specialization options tend to be diverse, and they can include areas like software, civic, electrical, and petroleum engineering.
Many engineers have strong attention to detail and are meticulous. They often demonstrate interest in learning how things work from an early age, usually by solving puzzles and deconstructing things to put them back together again. A desire to help people through technology, products, and infrastructure also contributes to becoming an good engineer.
Though choosing an engineering program may initially seem daunting, carefully weighing the factors that influence a program's success can help you sort things out and draw useful conclusions. Read on for some guidelines for choosing the right engineering program for you.
Complete 4 years of Maths in high school (Algebra/Calculus/Statistics etc)
Get a good GPA/SAT Score will help you get an admission in good universities
After graduating from high school, one will need to earn a bachelor’s degree in engineering from a school accredited by the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology.
Depends on your career goals and what area of engineering you'd like to practice, one can pursue Master Degree/Doctoral Programs
Some skills/important qualities that would help to be successful engineer
Working in teams
Creativity and imagination
Good Communication skills etc
Participating in science clubs, learning computer coding, joining Lego or Robotics Club, Playing Chess all will help to acquire skills that would be helpful to become an engineer or get into admission to top engineering college.
There are different engineering disciplines to choose from, some are more popular than others.Research about each one , compare and shortlist few which is of your interest.
Computer Software Engineering
Construction Management Engineering
Fire Protection Engineering
I suggested my son to choose Computer Science Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or Telcommmunication Enngineering etc.He end up choosing Graphics Information Technology at ASU, he is in his 2nd semester and likes it.
What college is best for a student?
Reflect on what's important, where you want to be, and who you want to become. With those answers, you can figure out what types of colleges will allow you to reach your goals.
Here are some aspects to consider:
-Distance from your home
- Majors and classes offered
- Extracurricular activities
Once you have a list of schools, it's time to do research to discover right college.
To learn more about the colleges you're considering, check out college guidebooks and the colleges' websites.
Write down your questions, and get answers by:
Talking to your school counselor or teachers.
Checking out colleges’ student blogs, if available.
Contacting college admissions officials.
Asking admissions officials to recommend current students or recent graduates to talk to.
Visiting college campuses,
There's no shortage of excellent schools to prepare you for your future. Once you compare the colleges that interest you, you can decide based on which suits you more, which affordable and which is overall best for you etc.
Click on the below link to find 2023 Best Engineering Schools - US News Rankings
Hope this helps! Wish you all good luck in your endeavors.
David C’s Answer
A word of caution would be not to allow money to be the main reason for your choice. If you end up not liking the career choice you've made, you may then come to regret it and go into something else not related to your schooling meaning the cost of the schooling will be mostly lost. Many have fallen into that area. So, choose wisely on various reasons such as interest, long term commitment, continued need for that skill or career in the future, and money, (in that order).
Good luck in your search!
In my career as an engineer, it was extremely valuable to obtain a degree in Project Management in addition to my Bachelor of Science. Not only has this helped with career progression, but many of the tools and practices found in Project Management are tightly woven into Engineering roles. Budgeting, forecasting, risk analysis, and project life cycles to name a few.