The mainstream engineering field involves the scientific process of building, constructing, or designing machines, buildings, and other structures. The field of engineering management, however, is different. It deals with the management and organizational aspect of engineering. It involves a combination of technical knowledge and business expertise, which are used to work toward better strategies and plans.
Degrees in engineering or engineering management cover a common syllabus of engineering fundamentals, industrial skills, and mathematics. Mainstream engineering degrees offer a detailed study of these concepts, in addition to advanced topics and specializations. Engineering management degrees provide further knowledge and training in business-oriented areas like economics, management, strategy planning, and market analysis.
Engineering is a sought-after and well-paid field with a lot of job prospects once you graduate. But these careers depend on the degree and specialization you choose. Here are some options to consider.
Associate’s degree: An associate’s degree in engineering deals with fundamental engineering concepts as well as other related subjects in mathematics, chemistry, and physics. This is a basic-level program that covers necessary courses, without providing in-depth information or practical exposure. Subjects like circuits, engineering structures, multi-view drawings, and manufacturing and construction can also be touched upon. Although there may not be many job opportunities for graduates with this degree, it does provide a good base for further studies.
Bachelor’s degree: This degree level is a popular choice, especially for someone looking to get into mainstream engineering. It covers subjects in-depth and includes practical and theoretical knowledge. There are various kinds of bachelor degrees in engineering, engineering management, or both:
A bachelor’s degree program takes about four years to complete, and prepares you for a range of jobs related to engineering or management.
Master’s degree: Master’s degrees are intensive and advanced, and help students excel in the field through better subject matter knowledge and practical expertise. Degrees can be offered as a Master of Science in Engineering or a master’s degree in engineering management. Students are taught topics like marketing, engineering solutions, and strategic change. This degree takes about two years to complete and prepares students for higher managerial and administrative roles.
Doctoral degree: This is a long-term and research-based program that encourages students to work on projects and new findings. Students are taught hands-on subjects that involve strategy planning, risk-taking, and analysis. Research is a focus in this degree and students are required to submit a dissertation upon completion. This degree can take up to five years or more to complete.
Graduates with a degree in engineering can get relevant jobs depending on their field of specialization. Some common specializations include mechanical engineering or electronics. There are many well-paid engineering positions available in these areas. For graduates with a degree in engineering management, there are managerial positions like operations manager, production manager, or construction manager. Other than that, you can get positions such as a market analyst. Graduates with a doctoral degree can get into research or academic careers.
Engineering is a popular and promising field with plenty of opportunities and pathways for career growth. A degree in this field would be the right place to start.