Engineers design and develop new products in a variety of different industries. They might be mechanical or software engineers or create electric machinery, design chemical or geotechnical processes, or help to structure civil or management disciplines. Whatever the case may be, engineers are involved in creating the diverse technologies that facilitate the processes of our lives in different areas. Combining creative thinking with the principles of mathematics and science using a wide range of technical skills, engineers work on the design, manufacturing, installation, and maintenance of various products from machines, vehicles, buildings, and roads to software or social processes serving consumers, businesses, and societies.

Engineers are creative thinkers and brilliant problem solvers. They excel at mathematical, scientific, and mechanical analysis. They follow plans and blueprints with a strong focus, yet remain flexible and work well under pressure.

Engineers develop systems for solving various problems as members of a team. They know that a single component is worthless without their counterparts, so they have to be great communicators, as well, to be successful at their job.

What Does an Engineer Do

There are certain skills that many engineers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed creativity, listening skills and math skills.

Learn more about what an Engineer does

How To Become an Engineer

If you're interested in becoming an engineer, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 65.2% of engineers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 12.7% of engineers have master's degrees. Even though most engineers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become an Engineer

Engineer Career Paths

Average Salary for an Engineer

Engineers in America make an average salary of $92,077 per year or $44 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $130,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $65,000 per year.
Average Engineer Salary
$92,077 Yearly
$44.27 hourly
$65,000
10%
$92,000
Median
$130,000
90%

What Am I Worth?

salary-calculator
How To Become an Engineer
How To Become an Engineer Career Overview

States With The Most Engineer Jobs

Mouse over a state to see the number of active engineer jobs in each state. The darker areas on the map show where engineers earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.

Average Salary: Job Openings:

Number Of Engineer Jobs By State

Engineer Education

Engineer Majors

Engineer Degrees

Bachelors

65.2 %

Masters

12.7 %

Associate

11.4 %

Top Colleges for Engineers

1. Michigan Technological University

Houghton, MI • Private

In-State Tuition
$15,646
Enrollment
5,736

2. Georgia Institute of Technology

Atlanta, GA • Private

In-State Tuition
$12,424
Enrollment
15,201

3. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,188
Enrollment
15,105

4. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,832
Enrollment
4,550

5. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

6. Columbia University in the City of New York

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$59,430
Enrollment
8,216

7. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

8. Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,740
Enrollment
5,567

9. Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,465
Enrollment
6,483

10. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

Top Skills For an Engineer

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 8.2% of engineers listed python on their resume, but soft skills such as creativity and listening skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Engineer Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Engineer templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Engineer resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

Engineer Resume
Engineer Resume
Engineer Resume
Engineer Resume
Engineer Resume
Engineer Resume
Engineer Resume
Engineer Resume
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Engineer Resume
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Engineer Resume

Engineer Demographics

Engineer Gender Distribution

Male
Male
86%
Female
Female
14%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among engineers, 13.7% of them are women, while 86.3% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among engineers is White, which makes up 71.7% of all engineers.

  • The most common foreign language among engineers is Spanish at 38.3%.

Work Experience Programs For Engineers

Virtual work experience programs replicate work at top companies and help you gain the skills to be successful when applying and working there. In only a few hours, learn the relevant tools necessary to complete a typical work day at that company. Virtual work experience programs are 100% free, open-access, and self-paced. No experience or application is required!

Globally Responsible Engineering Program

Company: Engineers Without Borders UK

Cost: Free

Duration: 5-6 hours

Civil Engineering Program

Company: John Holland Australia

Cost: Free

Duration: 5-6 hours

Software Engineering Program

Company: Standard Bank

Cost: Free

Duration: 4-4.5 hours

Software Engineering Program

Company: Blackbird Australia

Cost: Free

Duration: 5-10 hours

Token Service Technology Program

Company: Visa

Cost: Free

Duration: 2-3 hours

Advanced Software Engineering Program

Company: Walmart India

Cost: Free

Duration: 3.5-4 hours

Engineering Program

Company: General Electric

Cost: Free

Duration: 3-4.5 hours

Software Engineering Program

Company: Electronic Arts

Cost: Free

Duration: 4-6 hours

Marketing Analysis Program

Company: Wayfair

Cost: Free

Duration: 3 hours

Software Engineering Program

Company: Align Technology

Cost: Free

Duration: 1 hour

Online Courses For Engineer That You May Like

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Cloud Data Engineering
coursera

Welcome to the third course in the Building Cloud Computing Solutions at Scale Specialization! In this course, you will learn how to apply Data Engineering to real-world projects using the Cloud computing concepts introduced in the first two courses of this series. By the end of this course, you will be able to develop Data Engineering applications and use software development best practices to create data engineering applications. These will include continuous deployment, code quality tools,...

Technical Support Case Studies and Capstone
coursera

This course allows you to show what you’ve learned in the previous IT Technical Support professional certification courses and apply that knowledge to realistic situations. The IT Technical Support Capstone leads you through a series of technical support case studies that require hands-on work to resolve. You will practice analyzing user help requests and troubleshooting various issues. You’ll demonstrate your knowledge of hardware, software, networking, security, and cloud computing. You’ll...

Python Project for Data Engineering
coursera

This mini-course is intended to apply foundational Python skills by implementing different techniques to collect and work with data. Assume the role of a Data Engineer and extract data from multiple file formats, transform it into specific datatypes, and then load it into a single source for analysis. Continue with the course and test your knowledge by implementing webscraping and extracting data with APIs all with the help of multiple hands-on labs. After completing this course you will have...

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Internship
Temporary

Best States For an Engineer

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as an engineer. The best states for people in this position are New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Oregon, and Pennsylvania. Engineers make the most in New Hampshire with an average salary of $97,046. Whereas in Massachusetts and Oregon, they would average $94,651 and $94,286, respectively. While engineers would only make an average of $93,864 in Pennsylvania, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. New Hampshire

Total Engineer Jobs: 1,343
Highest 10% Earn:
$134,000
Location Quotient:
0.95

2. Oregon

Total Engineer Jobs: 4,880
Highest 10% Earn:
$133,000
Location Quotient:
1.46

3. Massachusetts

Total Engineer Jobs: 9,976
Highest 10% Earn:
$131,000
Location Quotient:
1.35
Full List Of Best States For Engineers

How Do Engineer Rate Their Jobs?

Zippia Official Logo

5.0

district Safety Engineer June 2020

5.0

Zippia Official Logodistrict Safety Engineer June 2020

What do you like the most about working as Engineer?

The Different employees i work with and what all i learn from them Show More

What do you NOT like?

very little Show More

Zippia Official Logo

3.0

Electrical engineeringDecember 2019

3.0

Zippia Official LogoElectrical engineeringDecember 2019

What do you like the most about working as Engineer?

Troubleshooting and commissioning Show More

What do you NOT like?

Undone job, when we're unable to discover certain fault on time. Show More

Zippia Official Logo

5.0

Mid Continent Oroduction MgrJuly 2019

5.0

Zippia Official LogoMid Continent Oroduction MgrJuly 2019

What do you like the most about working as Engineer?

Challenge, satisfaction of problem resolution and working with team Show More

What do you NOT like?

HR compliance and accounting auditing , quarterly budgeting rather than Annual as previously accepted. Wallstreet insistence on more frequent projections Show More

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Top Engineer Employers

Most Common Employers For Engineer

RankCompanyAverage SalaryHourly RateJob Openings
1General Electric$102,908$49.4855
2AT&T$100,823$48.4760
3Marriott International$99,369$47.7777
4Honeywell$98,659$47.43101
5Ericsson$98,052$47.1461
6Union Pacific$97,927$47.0873
7Qualcomm$96,846$46.56132
8Kiewit$96,235$46.2754
9Caterpillar$96,219$46.26101
10United States Marine Corps$95,522$45.9290

Becoming an Engineer FAQs

Engineer Vs. Scientist

An engineer focuses on creating within a specific realm of science, while a scientist observes the world on a much broader scale.

An engineer is a scientist, but they deal with a variety of issues and topics. Their specialization is narrowed down to a specific area of interest, such as mechanical, environmental, or aerospace. Their primary focus is on how things work and how they can make them better.

Mechanic Vs. Engineer

A mechanic takes a more hands-on approach and usually takes things apart and looks for signs of a problem, while an engineer uses computers and technology to perform a diagnosis on a vehicle and extract data to identify issues.

Producer Vs. Engineer

A producer is a music industry professional who is the creative leader of a recording session or album, while an engineer is someone who uses their technical knowledge to bring the producer's vision to life.

Scientist Vs. Engineer

A scientist is a professional who specializes in one or several areas of science and observes the world, while an engineer is someone who creates things using math and other strategies.

Scientists undergo specific education and training in a specific scientific area. They conduct research in the hopes of advancing knowledge of particular parts of the world. Scientists may make hypotheses, test them with different means such as statistics and data, and formulate conclusions based on the evidence.

Technician Vs. Engineer

A technician works with complex systems and is responsible for performing technical diagnostic or mechanical testing, while an engineer is responsible for analyzing, developing, and implementing complex systems.

How Long Does It Take To Become An Engineer?

It takes 4 years of professional experience to become an engineer. That is the time it takes to learn specific engineer skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education. If you include the normal education requirements to complete a college degree, then it takes 7 to 9 years years to become an engineer.

Can Everyone Become An Engineer?

No, not everyone can become an engineer. It takes time, dedication and a bachelor's degree from an accredited engineering program at a college or university. After graduating, you can get licensed to work as a Professional Engineer.

How Can I Start Engineering?

You can start engineering by deciding on which field of engineering is of most interest to you. There are over 30 specialized engineering majors. Not all schools have the same offerings.

How Many Years Does It Take To Become An Engineer?

It takes four to five years to become an engineer. Engineering degrees are followed by post-education examinations, specialization, supervised training, and continued education. It can take 8-12 years for advanced engineering degrees.

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