If you are commencing a career in engineering then, whichever discipline you have chosen, you have made an excellent choice. Even within your discipline, the breadth of opportunity that will be open to you is truly exceptional, and the satisfaction that can be gained from making a positive contribution to society over a career lifetime should not be taken for granted. Those entering many other professions will not have the same opportunity to affect the lives of others on anywhere near like the same scale that you can as an engineer.
Engineers use their knowledge and skills to solve problems and make things work and this extends to almost any walk of life. Virtually anything you can think of will have been designed or produced by engineers – from your mobile phone, make-up or games console to buildings, bridges or barrages.
The engineering profession today is also key to tackling many of the global challenges we face, such as climate change or the need to become a low carbon economy through better use of resources and energy.
It plays a part in the health of mankind, such as ensuring a good supply of clean water is available to those living in underdeveloped countries. Engineers will play a central role in revitalising our manufacturing base in the UK, and are at the forefront of developing new medical solutions and new communications technologies. These are just a few examples of how engineers really do make a difference to the world we live in.
You have probably already achieved, or are on your way to completing, your degree. However, to become a competent engineer there are now certain skills you will need to develop further, which amongst others includes problem-solving.
As a graduate, you may be tasked with developing a solution that would prevent the pollutants found on airport runways in winter from getting in to the surrounding water courses. If the right solution hadn’t been developed, then in addition to company receiving a multi-million pound fine, lasting damage to the local ecology would have been done.
There are 36 professional engineering institutions that between them cover every sector of the profession. Each offers a huge amount of support and information, not to mention invaluable networking opportunities.
Whichever path you choose to take, if you’re serious about a career in engineering, aspiring to become professionally qualified as an Incorporated Engineer (IEng) or Chartered Engineer (CEng) should feature highly on your agenda and will mark an important milestone in your career development.
Find out more about what’s involved in each of the different engineering professions by reading on.