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Mechanical engineers typically need a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering or mechanical engineering technology. Mechanical engineers who sell services publicly must be licensed in all states and the District of Columbia.Education
Mechanical engineers typically need a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering or mechanical engineering technology. Mechanical engineering programs usually include courses in mathematics and life and physical sciences, as well as engineering and design courses. Mechanical engineering technology programs focus less on theory and more on the practical application of engineering principles. They may emphasize internships and co-ops to prepare students for work in industry.
Some colleges and universities offer 5-year programs that allow students to obtain both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree. Some 5-year or even 6-year cooperative plans combine classroom study with practical work, enabling students to gain valuable experience and earn money to finance part of their education.
ABET accredits programs in engineering and engineering technology. Most employers prefer to hire students from an accredited program. A degree from an ABET-accredited program is usually necessary to become a licensed professional engineer.Important Qualities
Creativity. Mechanical engineers design and build complex pieces of equipment and machinery. A creative mind is essential for this kind of work.
Listening skills. Mechanical engineers often work on projects with others, such as architects and computer scientists. They must listen to and analyze different approaches made by other experts to complete the task at hand.
Math skills. Mechanical engineers use the principles of calculus, statistics, and other advanced subjects in math for analysis, design, and troubleshooting in their work.
Mechanical skills. Mechanical skills allow engineers to apply basic engineering concepts and mechanical processes to the design of new devices and systems.
Problem-solving skills. Mechanical engineers need good problem-solving skills to take scientific discoveries and use them to design and build useful products.Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations
Licensure is not required for entry-level positions as a mechanical engineer. A Professional Engineering (PE) license, which allows for higher levels of leadership and independence, can be acquired later in one’s career. Licensed engineers are called professional engineers (PEs). A PE can oversee the work of other engineers, sign off on projects, and provide services directly to the public. State licensure generally requires
The initial FE exam can be taken after one earns a bachelor’s degree. Engineers who pass this exam are commonly called engineers in training (EITs) or engineer interns (EIs). After meeting work experience requirements, EITs and EIs can take the second exam, called the Principles and Practice of Engineering.
Several states require engineers to take continuing education to renew their licenses every year. Most states recognize licensure from other states, as long as the other state’s licensing requirements meet or exceed their own licensing requirements.
Several professional organizations offer a variety of certification programs for engineers to demonstrate competency in specific fields of mechanical engineering.Advancement
A Ph.D. is essential for engineering faculty positions in higher education, as well as for some research and development programs. Mechanical engineers may earn graduate degrees in engineering or business administration to learn new technology, broaden their education, and enhance their project management skills. Mechanical engineers may become administrators or managers after obtaining the requisite experience.
Average Length of Employment
Top Careers Before Research Engineer
Top Careers After Research Engineer
Hispanic or Latino7.6%
Black or African American1.2%
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Georgia Institute of Technology -10.8%
Pennsylvania State University6.4%
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute6.1%
University of Texas at Austin5.7%
Texas A&M University5.5%
Michigan State University5.1%
University of Florida4.7%
Rochester Institute of Technology4.2%
Carnegie Mellon University4.2%
Massachusetts Institute of Technology4.2%
New Jersey Institute of Technology4.1%
University of Michigan - Ann Arbor4.1%
Case Western Reserve University4.1%
Arizona State University4.0%
University of Washington3.8%
University of Arizona3.8%
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|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Research Engineer||Google Inc.||Kirkland, WA||Jul 07, 2016||$216,000|
|Research Engineer||Google, Inc.||Kirkland, WA||Aug 10, 2015||$216,000|
|Research Engineer, SR. Staff||Samsung Research America, Inc.||Mountain View, CA||Jul 27, 2015||$200,000|
|Research Engineer||JD.Com American Technologies Corporation||Santa Clara, CA||Nov 28, 2016||$200,000 -
|Subsurface Nanotechnology Research Engineer||Shell International Exploration and Production Inc.||Houston, TX||Oct 01, 2015||$182,800|
|GNC Research Engineer||Autel Robotics USA LLC||San Ramon, CA||Feb 15, 2016||$180,000|
|Research Engineer||VIV Labs Inc.||San Jose, CA||Aug 26, 2016||$175,000 -
|Research Engineer||ZOOX, Inc.||Menlo Park, CA||Jan 08, 2016||$170,000|
|Research Engineer||FX Palo Alto Laboratory, Inc.||Palo Alto, CA||Jun 09, 2016||$167,500|
|Research Engineer||Chevron Corporation||Houston, TX||Sep 18, 2015||$163,488|
|Research Engineers||Exxonmobil Upstream Research Company||Houston, TX||May 29, 2015||$163,488 -
|Research Engineer||EBAY Inc.||San Jose, CA||Mar 11, 2015||$162,000|
|Research Engineer||VIV Labs Inc.||San Jose, CA||Aug 26, 2016||$161,000 -
|Research Engineer||Google Inc.||Mountain View, CA||May 08, 2016||$161,000|
|Staff Research Engineer/Corp R&D Wireless Protocol||Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.||San Diego, CA||Jun 27, 2015||$111,800 -
|Research Engineer||SRI International||Menlo Park, CA||Dec 14, 2015||$111,654 -
|Research Engineer||SRI International||Menlo Park, CA||Jan 25, 2016||$111,654 -
|Research Engineer||Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company||Palo Alto, CA||Aug 01, 2015||$111,650 -
|Research Engineer-Natural Language Processing||Basis Technology Corporation||Cambridge, MA||Sep 15, 2015||$110,850|
|Research Engineer-Senior||Siemens PLM Software Inc.||Charlotte, NC||Jul 04, 2016||$110,827 -
|Tech Yahoo, Research Engineer||Yahoo! Inc.||Sunnyvale, CA||Sep 03, 2015||$110,700 -
|Research Engineer II||Georgia Institute of Technology||Atlanta, GA||Jan 07, 2016||$89,993|
|Research Engineer||Newracom, Inc.||Irvine, CA||Feb 09, 2016||$89,782|
|Research Engineer, Video Codec||Dolby Laboratories, Inc.||Sunnyvale, CA||Sep 03, 2015||$89,687|
|High Pressure Research Engineer||SII Megadiamond||Provo, UT||Sep 22, 2015||$89,650|
|Research Engineer||Mistras Group, Inc.||Princeton Junction, NJ||Dec 22, 2015||$89,648|
|Research Engineer||Cargill, Incorporated||Plymouth, MN||May 08, 2016||$89,627 -
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