There is little doubt about the reputation of the engineering profession as one of the best career fields out there. Everyone wants to become an engineer in the current 21st century because not only this career offers great salary but also commands a lot of respect.
But we should keep in mind that not everyone born is able to become an engineer and not everyone who aspires to become an engineer should even try this career choice. This is because engineering requires a different kind of aptitude and attitude and not everyone has it.
Therefore before diving into this field, one should do a complete self-assessment to understand if he or she is made for it since many time halfway into the career you find yourself lost and totally out of place which is even worse considering you spent so many years if your life doing something you never loved or wanted to do.
That’s why whenever any friend or relative or someone you know tells you that he or she wants to become an engineer, you should be prompt to ask him that why they want to become one. Only when you get a satisfactory answer to this question that you can recommend the other person to go ahead.
However, many times there is no satisfactory answer and that’s the moment when you should ask the other person to take a pause and rethink over his decision of taking engineering as a career choice. The same applies to you also.
If you had a lifelong passion for building things like Lego constructions, model boats or airplanes, fixing electronics by yourself or tinkering with computer hardware and software it reveals your enthusiasm for engineering.
Based on these experiences you can very well try this career choice. However, the sad truth is that most students don’t really know why they want to be an engineer.
This also becomes worse when they are asked what type of engineer they would like to become. Their only inspiration to become an engineer is their parents who want them to earn a lot of money, respect in society and also a good marriage partner. Such is the depravity of mind. Here are some things to keep in mind while thinking of engineering as a career choice.
First, you got to know about engineering.
Before thinking of engineering as a probable career choice, it’s important to begin searching for the field and gaining some exposure to real engineers. There are more than 30 college engineering majors that one can pursue.
Your research should be as wide and inclusive as possible. If done broadly you will find that the most traditional areas of engineering are mechanical, civil, certainly electrical or electronical, chemical and industrial. IT or Computer Science are very new additions to the existing lot that only got prominence a decade back due to the technology revolution.
Now we are witnessing the onslaught of even newer branches which are highly niche sections of technology. These are also sometimes classified as subsets of the most traditional types or fields of study on their own.
There are biotech, robotics, AI, environmental engineering, petrochemical, mining and aerospace engineering. One thing is for sure that the future will be in fields that can provide sustainable energy and renewable resources. These fields will likely become high demand fields in the near future.
Talk to engineers
The best exposure to what engineering will be like once you complete your education will be gained by talking to live practicing engineers who are already in the field.
With everyone going after this profession, there is a very high chance you yourself have someone in your family who is an engineer. There is no replacement for personal exposure, and it holds special importance for aspiring engineers.
If you do not have a family member or friends who are engineers, do not be afraid to approach engineers who are working near your area. This would also be a great opportunity to brush up your communication skills.
The exposure will give you an insight into life after education and also how to go about studying your engineering major. Talking to engineers will also reveal to you how to apply to engineering jobs and give interviews.
You will have an insight into how to go about completing your education in a structured way. Committing to an engineering degree is a high responsibility thing to do as the education is complex and demanding.
Thus, even before you apply to an engineering college it’s important to get an idea about this field, and what are the roles and duties to be performed.
Once you have completed the above two steps, it will definitely open you to a lot more possibilities within and outside engineering. You will have a clearer picture of where you stand and whether engineering is the right choice for you to take as a career. What’s even better is that you will take the right decision based on facts and your own abilities and not because your parents want you to.
Thank you for reading.
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Saurabh Tyagi is a writer, social media enthusiast and a keen observer of latest job trends. He is currently associated with Naukri.com, a leading online recruitment company in India. When he is not writing, you will find him brushing his knowledge about the latest jobs and digital marketing news. You can follow him on LinkedIn or Twitter.