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Become A Student Engineer

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Working As A Student Engineer

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Getting Information
  • Deal with People

  • Make Decisions

  • $78,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Student Engineer Do

Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers research, design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

Duties

Mechanical engineers typically do the following:

  • Analyze problems to see how mechanical and thermal devices might help solve a particular problem
  • Design or redesign mechanical and thermal devices or subsystems, using analysis and computer-aided design
  • Develop and test prototypes of devices they design
  • Analyze the test results and change the design or system as needed
  • Oversee the manufacturing process for the device

Mechanical engineers design and oversee the manufacture of many products ranging from medical devices to new batteries.

Mechanical engineers design power-producing machines, such as electric generators, internal combustion engines, and steam and gas turbines, as well as power-using machines, such as refrigeration and air-conditioning systems.

Mechanical engineers design other machines inside buildings, such as elevators and escalators. They also design material-handling systems, such as conveyor systems and automated transfer stations.

Like other engineers, mechanical engineers use computers extensively. Mechanical engineers are routinely responsible for the integration of sensors, controllers, and machinery. Computer technology helps mechanical engineers create and analyze designs, run simulations and test how a machine is likely to work, interact with connected systems, and generate specifications for parts.

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How To Become A Student Engineer

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

  • A degree from an ABET-accredited engineering program
  • A passing score on the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam
  • Relevant work experience, typically at least 4 years
  • A passing score on the Professional Engineering (PE) exam

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.

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Student Engineer Career Paths

Student Engineer
Project Engineer Engineering Manager
Engineering Director
13 Yearsyrs
Project Engineer Systems Engineer Engineer
Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Project Engineer Senior Engineer Engineering Manager
Senior Engineering Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Engineer Mechanical Engineer Manufacturing Engineer
Manufacturing Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Engineer Engineering Manager Engineering Director
Vice President Of Engineering
13 Yearsyrs
Mechanical Engineer Process Engineer
Process Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Mechanical Engineer Manufacturing Engineer Design Engineer
Design Engineering Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Design Engineer Mechanical Design Engineer Senior Mechanical Engineer
Mechanical Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Design Engineer Product Engineer
Product Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Process Engineer Manufacturing Engineer
Engineering Supervisor
6 Yearsyrs
Process Engineer Plant Engineer
Plant Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Electrical Engineer Senior Engineer Senior Test Engineer
Test Engineering Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Electrical Engineer Systems Engineer Information Technology Project Manager
Engineering Program Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Electrical Engineer Project Manager Co-Founder
Chief Technology Officer & Founder
9 Yearsyrs
Co-Operations Engineer Production Engineer
Production Engineering Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Mechanical Design Engineer Senior Project Engineer Project Engineering Manager
Engineering Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Mechanical Design Engineer Senior Project Engineer Senior Process Engineer
Engineering Group Leader
7 Yearsyrs
Software Engineer Application Engineer Senior Design Engineer
Senior Engineering Team Leader
8 Yearsyrs
Software Engineer Test Engineer Senior Engineering Technician
Engineering Laboratory Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Software Engineer Lead Engineer Section Manager
Manager Of Engineering Department
7 Yearsyrs
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Student Engineer Demographics

Gender

Male

67.7%

Female

19.7%

Unknown

12.6%
Ethnicity

White

55.0%

Hispanic or Latino

15.4%

Asian

15.3%

Black or African American

9.8%

Unknown

4.5%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

45.2%

French

10.5%

German

8.4%

Chinese

5.9%

Hindi

3.8%

Russian

3.3%

Japanese

3.3%

Arabic

2.9%

Mandarin

2.9%

Carrier

2.5%

Vietnamese

1.7%

Korean

1.7%

Portuguese

1.7%

Italian

1.3%

Marathi

0.8%

Gujarati

0.8%

Hmong

0.8%

Turkish

0.8%

Armenian

0.8%

Thai

0.8%
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Student Engineer Education

Schools

Texas A&M University

9.6%

Kettering University

8.0%

Purdue University

6.7%

Georgia Institute of Technology -

5.9%

Pennsylvania State University

5.3%

University of Puerto Rico - Mayaguez

5.1%

University of Texas at Austin

5.0%

University of Alabama

4.8%

University of Florida

4.8%

University of California - San Diego

4.8%

Auburn University

4.4%

University of California - Davis

4.4%

University of Tennessee - Knoxville

4.3%

Clemson University

4.1%

Michigan Technological University

3.9%

University of Utah

3.9%

University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

3.9%

Brigham Young University

3.7%

University of California - Irvine

3.7%

Ohio State University

3.7%
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Majors

Mechanical Engineering

31.0%

Electrical Engineering

14.3%

Civil Engineering

10.2%

Chemical Engineering

7.3%

Engineering

4.7%

Biomedical Engineering

4.0%

Industrial Engineering

3.8%

Computer Engineering

3.7%

Business

3.6%

Aerospace Engineering

2.8%

Computer Science

2.5%

Engineering And Industrial Management

1.8%

Mechanical Engineering Technology

1.8%

Environmental Engineering

1.4%

Industrial Technology

1.4%

Mathematics

1.3%

Management

1.3%

Materials Science And Engineering

1.1%

Systems Engineering

1.0%

Electrical Engineering Technology

0.9%
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Degrees

Bachelors

59.8%

Masters

21.9%

Other

10.4%

Doctorate

3.4%

Associate

2.3%

Certificate

1.8%

Diploma

0.5%
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Top Skills for A Student Engineer

  1. CAD
  2. Solidworks
  3. Engineering Department
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Recognized for high academic honors as a member of the President's Honor Roll and on the Dean's List.
  • Created SolidWorks models of a truck-mounted refrigeration unit and inside components for engineering reference and presentation imagery purposes.
  • Learn and execute different responsibilities of pharmaceutical processes in the Engineering Department.
  • Collaborated effectively with environmental design and civil engineering students, and faculty to generate successful project completion.
  • Designed new facility material flow process that reduced/eliminated wasted motions.

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