BY MELISSA BURNS
Of course, your choice of college major should be primarily dictated by your own attitudes and preferences – no matter how prestigious a vocation you pursue, if you hate every minute of it and aren’t predisposed to this kind of work in the first place, it isn’t worth it. But if you don’t feel an aversion to it, engineering can be an excellent choice – and now more than ever. Here are five reasons why you should consider choosing it as your major.
1. It pays
Engineering specialists are among the most well-paid jobs on the market, and the demand for them is only going to grow in the years to come. According to a 2015 study by Forbes, a starting salary in the sphere of electrical engineering was on average $57,000. On obtaining sufficient experience and additional training, an engineer can more than double this initial figure. Of course, studying engineering is tough and requires many sacrifices, but financial gains more than compensate for this.
2. It changes the world
Engineers deal with real-world problems, fixing the things that don’t work, improving the processes that aren’t as efficient as they can be and inventing things that haven’t existed before. They are at the forefront of the future, and the sphere of application of their skills is incredibly broad. From precision CNC machining to harnessing new sources of energy, from inventing new building methods to dealing with pollution problems – engineers have a hand in all this and more. If the idea of playing an active role in the formation of the world around you appeals to you, engineering may be the right choice.
3. It means steady employment
Engineers have some of the lowest unemployment rates across all industries. While many other specialists struggle to find an entry-level job when out of school, engineers have an excellent chance of landing a well-paying position and good opportunities for career growth later on. Engineers are in demand across the whole world – combined with the knowledge of foreign languages it can mean a versatile career not limited to a single country.
4. It means great potential for gaining a leadership position
33 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs claim to have some kind of undergraduate engineering degree – the highest percentage of all majors, topping even business administration that is seemingly more logical in this position. From the very beginning of the career, an engineer may expect to be responsible for projects and teams, which provides the necessary experience to start one’s own business later or join the senior management of a company.
5. It is good for those who are not sure what they are good at
If you have a reasonable level of proficiency in mathematics and science but no real passion for anything, in particular, engineering can serve as a good stepping-stone for many a future career. Many of the courses necessary for engineering also suit other courses (in case you want to switch to them), plus you are going to study a lot of things that will teach you skills that will come in handy in a variety of careers – for example, economics, communication, business studies and so on. And chances are that engineering will grow upon you as you study it and see what excellent opportunities it opens up in front of you.
Engineering is one of the most respected and well-paid vocations; it opens one a road to leadership positions and guarantees steady employment throughout life. If you are not sure what you want to do with your life, you can do much worse than choosing it as your career path.
Melissa Burns graduated from the faculty of Journalism of Iowa State University. Nowadays she is an entrepreneur and independent journalist. Follow her @melissaaburns or contact at firstname.lastname@example.org