How to Get a Job as a Mechanical Engineer
"Like other professions, it helps to have some inside demonstrative ability in the field," says Loughlin. "Many schools are using capstone-type projects which give students a chance to sharpen their engineering skills, but also their organizational, management, and communication skills." Other professional organizations where you can pick up practical experience and broaden your professional network include Engineers Without Borders, Engineering for Change, and demographic-specific groups like Society of Women Engineers.
What is the Job Like?
From laboring on oil platforms in the Gulf Coast in the United States, to camping out in China for the construction of a skyscraper, to the simplicity of a suburban office, the work environment for a mechanical engineer is very fluid. According to Loughlin, around 90 percent of those in the profession have a time card that reads 9-to-5, making for a career that is often friendly toward an individual’s personal life. "I'd put it on par with any other profession," says Loughlin about the work-life balance. "Certainly far better than being a lawyer, but maybe not as good as being a dentist." But for those assigned to a project that has a months-long deadline rather than a years-long deadline, it's a more feverish pace, adding a little more sweat to the brow.