Mechanical engineering degrees offer the student a broad education in engineering concepts such as design, production and automation. Nearly any company that designs, builds or produces a product requires the services of a mechanical engineer at some point during the process. People with a mechanical engineering degree can consider a variety of options for employment, including the government, academia and the private sector.
The federal government hires mechanical engineering majors for employment in national defense, security and aeronautics. The U.S. Navy employs nuclear engineers, a sub-specialty of mechanical engineering, for operation of its vessels. In addition, the Navy employs naval architects for the building of naval vessels, explains the Mymajors website. NASA hires mechanical engineers for aerospace research and development.
Once a mechanical engineer has developed a field or level of expertise, he might consider working as a consultant to private or public entities, suggests the World Wide Learn website. Mechanical engineers might work for a law firm, advising on patents or injuries related to equipment. Or, they might advise on a project-by-project basis such as overseeing the mechanical systems of a commercial building project.
Industrial firms that manufacture goods often require the services of mechanical engineers. In the automotive industry, mechanical engineers might find jobs designing any of the moving parts in vehicles and improving existing designs for increased levels of performance. Mechanical engineers might also find jobs in system management, plant (factory) engineering, design of manufacturing equipment, design of robots that work on manufacturing equipment, and quality control of equipment and processes, explains the World Wide Learn website.
Those with a doctorate in mechanical engineering might consider a career in academics. Teaching undergraduate or graduate courses at the university level is one option for those with a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering. Another option for those with a doctorate degree involves conducting research in specialized fields of study such as optical imaging, aerial systems, automated systems, fluid mechanics and biomedical mechanics, explains the PhDs.org website. Mechanical engineers working in academia might also write and edit professional papers and journals for publication.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in the future, people with mechanical engineering degrees might find employment opportunities in the fields of biotechnology, nanotechnology and material science. Because new forms of technology often require the engineering of new machinery and skilled people to maintain it, mechanical engineers might seek work in other engineering sub-specialties related to their field, such as biomedical engineering, which has a much faster rate of job growth through 2018 compared to mechanical engineering, reports the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
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