I graduated with honours after doing a chemical engineering degree and found that I just couldn’t break into the industry. Don’t forget to check out the comments to see more diverse views. Sitting behind the screen, ensuring the numbers are good enough to be presented to management. To be honest, I have the same experience. hi, I’m a freshman studying computer engineering. Something which I used to enjoy about a year ago, does not please me anymore. Maximizing your pay from 21-35 is not a bad idea. I don’t think I can retire until I’m 55. But it seems they simply said FYS and founded a new conmpany like Shockley Labs-> Fairchild Semiconductor-> Intel There is a huge collection of video material in the Stanford libary featuring interviews with a lot of famous guys and company founders from the older times and most of them look super happy regarding their work. System Architect here (Computer System Engineer) and I totally here him on that, Lance. I’ve really enjoyed this reading this discussion, as I am living life nearly in reverse from most of the people posting. I have been very successful in my chosen engineering field without having to work significant overtime or sacrifice my personal life. I will pass my board exam but of course you have to make actions. However, an engineering career might not be a good fit for everyone. The politics, stress, corporate silos(90 employees down from over 200), managers who did not really understand the technology and were afraid answering questions without consulting with a team of other managers kind of drug me down. Employees are viewed much more as resources than people, so they are treated that way: long hours, extremely stressful projects and timelines, changing technology to keep up with, younger and younger competitors with more energy, CORPORATE POLITICS, etc. Engineers are creative. IMHO, that last oil patch bust of circa 1980, followed by the hollowing out of the midwest, a.k.a Rust Belt, was the beginning of the end of engineering as a profession. I even learned a little French and German along the way, and the German is very handy now since I get to go to Germany often). Good luck! Once you know what you'd like to do, apply to a college or university with a highly ranked engineering program. It’s so heartless. Interesting post! An accounting-engineering qualification is an extremely good, highly sought after qualification. I joined a prominent company, in my chosen field of ASIC Design Verification (I work on Memory subsystems which is just what I thought I wanted), start of 2018 and now by 2020, I am already feeling dead at my job. I admire what you are doing, i hope one day hubby and I can get there too! Thanks! Again – you’ve got to really have the desire to do this kind of thing in order to make it work. I majored in finance. I think this applies as a general rule in terms of progressing the corporate ladder – it’s becomes more about building relationships and rapport and less about the technical aspects. i used to have responsibilities and problems to solve at a couple of smaller companies. You wear both hats, which makes the job tougher. You probably should focus more on yourself and ignore how other people are doing. I'm at an age (28) where I'm looking back at my life, and thinking to myself what the f*** did I do? This will be my main income stream over the next 5 years as I work on building up my passive income. In fact, in many instances, it probably grew out of tradespersons (who we may have called themselves engineers had the word been around at the time). Or you need to find a really great company to work for. I’m still on retainer for a very minimal amount of consulting each month, but out of the full-time grind. I have not discussed this matter with them as of writing as I am yet to be sure about making the shift. To become a structural engineer, start by earning a structural engineering degree and getting as much experience as you can through internships and entry-level positions. I too am an engineer and have undergone a similar transformation as I’ve progressed throughout my career. I’m more incline towards cs but taking some hardware classes will definitely help me in my career. While my current gig is okay it has me thinking about what to do in the long term. I think Kodak in Rochester, which had 60k workers at the peak, is 100% gone now. You’ve come this far. Good luck! I bounced back (although my GPA is still below 3.0) and started to enjoy part of my major slightly more. Medicine and finance are great careers too. The good news is, I really like leading technical things, making presentations, planning, etc., so I hope I’m still able to enjoy my career for years to come! In fact you might will understand the field of Design/Analog Verification of ICs, which I am currently in and have been working in this field for 4 years now. Now today : I love to work with simple things, I could enjouy myself to my death with an AVR : creativity never ends. It’s mean more opportunities have for the engineering graduates. At that time I don’t want to go to college, why?, What’s the point of having your dreams to pursue when you don’t have the reason why you’re pursuing it? I’m graduating in computer engineering pretty soon with a great gpa and looking for jobs. I totally identify with this post…I’m a database engineer..been doing this for 9 years and I’m 34 years old going on 35. The details you have to remember drive me crazy. I think it was me that changed a lot over the years. Unfortunately, I couldn’t do it. I’ve always been available to do more but asking for extra work usually falls on deaf ears. Then I still shifted in Civil Engineering. Working in big companies since graduation, I am now at the point in career where I feel stuck with no progress in sight, technical or managerial, and all I am doing is same stuff over and over again, with incompetent people being promoted ahead of guys who do the work in the office. Yeah, I agree with you about the arbitrary deadlines and power plays. The early years in my career were tough as it was hard to find a job I enjoyed, but after four career switches (different companies, and different positions in engineering), I think I am in a pretty good place. I’m making low 6 figures and have plenty of reasons to enjoy the work and opportunities I’ve been given. I have wasted enough of my life. A lot of jobs are going oversea. I was getting tired of the corporate scene where your contributions are looked over and politics win over. Anyone there more than 10 years has survived at least 2-3 layoffs, so you look around and (almost) everyone else has been through the same “layoff filters” as I call them. If you get a chance, I want to hear more about your thoughts on this because I think about this scenario so often and am always wondering “What if I became an engineer?” –> Ray (at) howtoclearyouracne (dot) com. I was frugal and saved enough to last 2 years working on a passion project but realized later it wasn’t feasible, especially when software is not something I enjoy much, I do it because it comes with the territory of engineering. If you invest 6 more years into engineering, then you will really feel obligated to be an engineer for a long time. 50 hrs of work week,solving customer issues,no personal life. I went through it and can now say I thoroughly understand the systems and machinery. I studied VLSI (chip design) so working for Intel was a dream came true. I have had managers state, “You studied engineering? And I have a problem communicating with my mom and my dad. No job security, no significant income, long hours, hatred by non-engineers, etc., etc., etc. It does not surprise me there are “shortages” and fewer students studying it…I did Mechanical Engineering in University and went on to work on automotive engines. Principal, Structural Engineering The wellbeing of our communities is inextricably linked to the wellbeing of the environment. Here are several recommendations to get started: Use simple mentor-of-the-moment conversation starters. It seems to happen to a lot of guys in their 40’s. After graduation, I taught in a comunity college while finishing my graduate degree. RB40, I am a young engineer working in the semiconductor industry. It isn’t enough to excel on the technical side of engineering. I know this comment is extremely long, but I found it difficult to wrap up my thoughts short in length. I had many different technical roles in my time, but construction industry was the longest stretch by far. Here’s why … no “empty” suit wants a person who can out-powerpoint/out-explain things in front of higher C-level execs. Another friend had a couple crappy jobs and long stretches of unemployment and now wishes he hadn’t quit our company in the first place. That’s why Tuesday morning, instead of attending my class, I went to the Guidance Office and asked for a counsel. Anyone have any thoughts or suggestions? Why is getting a job so dumb? Nobody in your particular industry will hire you because they’ve just laid off your peers. Even so-called ‘sales’ requires a pre-existing CO-OP nowadays. I think management jobs are better than the slaves doing engineering. I think that programming skills are really important but I don’t want to sit in a chair all day! These days, my plate is full with being a dad and a personal finance blogger. I was unhappy, and I really don’t want to go back. I started working in the Marine Engineering industry and the company actually had exactly what I wanted; extensive on-the-job hands on technical training. ), you do a good interview, you will be fine. One friend was originally in a really REALLY awful job in a certain division here and eventually got out of that and changed to another job internally and his job went from hell to just fine. Have been laid off 19 times in those 35 years of a mix of contract and full time positions. system. The real burnout was due to the slow disintegration of benefits, constant layoffs, forced vacations, zero raises, and in one year they actually docked the entire company’s salary 5%…. The Structural Engineering group holds an annual conference for structural engineering professionals to discuss exciting new developments in the field, gain timely job-related information, network with colleagues, and renew their sense of professional purpose. Everyone who is thinking about quitting their job should read Financial Samurai’s book: How to engineer your layoff. Surely, there are exceptions but in my pretty long experience all companies are same when it comes to handling people and competency. I am currently 35. Relating to this is one of my favorite quotes from one of my favorite bloggers: “Getting a job and trading your time for money may seem like a good idea. Right now I am so much more of a counselor at work than an engineering manager. However, you don’t have to leave engineering to … It’s a good alternative if engineering doesn’t work out. On top of that, I have been networking via LinkedIn and I’ve gotten interview offers from companies across the USA and Canada. If it is yes for you two, then you are also a retiree. Joy. Good luck finding a long term solution. And right now, the owner of a liquor store nearby, who was once an engineer for Raytheon, told me that of his entire cohort, only one was in tech after the age of 55. Many of my friends work for consultants and work nights, weekends, or whatever it takes. Keep trying different jobs, maybe you’ll find one that’s a good fit. I looked at my classmates and thought about what keeps them to stay there. AND I WAS OBSESSED WITH ARCHITECTURE SINCE CHILDHOOD. My experience is that smaller companies typically treat employees better, despite lower pay and benefits. (structures). An engineering career isn’t as good as it once was. Also experienced my own autoimmune issues that aren’t going anywhere. Otherwise, you’re either an MBA type or on the list to be downsized someday in the future. Working as an developer for an ERP company, new boss arrived about 1-2 year aago from an bigger three letter ERP company. It still doesn’t make me retired. Textbooks present problems to demonstrate basic principles, but rarely will a future employer ask you to perform an outright estimate of the friction coefficient for a rubber ball rolling down a fictitious driveway. Eventually, I think money won’t matter as much when you get older and more financially secure. Hi, I know this is an old blog but wanted to comment on this regardless. Those Putzes need to read this blog! Engineering?! Probably within the next decade I will “retire” from my line of work and take on a new career, though I’d like to eventually get to the point where I can really retire and fully replace my income with my investments…preferably before “normal” retirement age. Structural is a traditional part of civil engineering. Save as much as you can and try to get some passive income rolling while you still make good money. But you need to be passionate and extremely dedicated about this in order to succeed at this. It gets hard to plan the future – your head is down, working, and you go home to relax. Its a twisted world today. My first semester in engineering school shocked me. They literally “rank” the employees from 1 to xxx in each pay level. If I’m wrong, I might be looking for a job in a couple years :p. Your points echo what I have been feeling for the last couple of years. Perhaps it is just the way of life. in 1983 as a computer technician, I started attending college for an EE degree part time in the late 80’s – tuition was 100% reimbursed back then. A course that I am not passionate about doing. One of them told us that about 80 % of us wouldn’t get jobs as engineers and I knew then that I would be in that 80%. But there was one condition: "You can only run half the remaining distance between you and the lady". …and now that I am back in engineering I am more miserable, angry, and bitter than ever. It’s important to keep in mind that engineering school teaches you a methodology for solving complex problems. We are in our 30s and we have ok savings but it has not panned out as we expected. Make sure you understand the compensation and flexibility of any career investment. I would like to graduate school and have a full time job. Turns out that career had nothing to do with me playing in my garage or hiking/hunting the Midwest. These are smart guys, but become victims of ageism in some respects. Don’t know where to start… I got my EE and after my first gig at a small defense contractor, I went to work at Compaq Computer (later HP) in ’89. If you're asking 'What is a structural engineer,' you probably already know that structural engineering is a branch of civil engineering. I hope you can share prob some of the regrets or internal struggle you may have to deal with since you retire; besides a drop in income. 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Level in English over a relatively short time period enjoy my work is the non technical.! Justice, if you really need to work in finance between structural engineer better in former. Out vsp, but it ’ s hard to let go, walked out, then some.

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