Shockingly, merely 6% of college graduates pursue engineering as a postsecondary specialization, as reported by the National Center For Education Statistics. Besides, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the engineering occupation will grow by 7.5% by 2026 in the US. While at global levels, the market is expected to reach $1167.21 billion by 2025.
Since a STEM degree constitutes an academic investment that may lead your career in different directions, engineering has an international scope as a profession. There are several occupations within this field where professionals make over $100,000 annually on average. Hence, those pursuing education in any specialized degree of engineering may enjoy various opportunities for career growth and the option to work anywhere on the planet. So, here are some well-known yet lucrative career pathways for aspiring engineers:
1. Mechanical Engineer
Machines have become an essential component of our lives, and we need more people to create them. Some types of machines generate power, such as engines and generators, while others consume it to operate, like refrigerators.
Mechanical engineers are trained individuals that develop useful machines considering the current needs to elevate people’s lifestyles. Mechanical engineers also work on designing some of the handy gadgets, just as they design vehicles, agricultural machines, and other devices. These professionals make over $80,000 every year, and the job opportunities for them are likely to grow in the future due to the rapid integration of technology and IoT in almost every sector.
2. Electrical Engineer
Just like mechanical engineering, the IoT expansion will also affect the electrical engineering sector since companies will need people to design and implement the circuitry of these devices. With an MSEE online degree, aspiring individuals can enhance their expertise in this field. Electrical engineers are instrumental in the creation of many gadgets, from complex machines to hand-held smartphones. Thus, these professionals enjoy salaries ranging from $90,000 to $100,000 on average. This discipline has several subfields, such as power electronics and instrumental engineering.
In this tech-driven world, electrical engineers play a crucial role. So, students can pursue this career pathway with high possibilities for a bright future.
3. Civil Engineer
Civil engineers are the most commonly associated professionals with the word “engineer.” They’re responsible for designing, constructing, and maintaining public/private sector infrastructure. We can also say that these experts create our schools, offices, houses, roads, dams, bridges, and tunnels. An engineer who works in the civil sector makes over $80,000 on average.
This profession has remained highly sought-after with an international scope. In Texas, some civil engineers recently created tools such as the Flood Information and Response System (FIRST) to warn people of upcoming floods.
4. Environmental Engineer
With climate change and global warming as the biggest threats to humanity’s survival, the world has become more cautious about its impact on the environment. Environmental engineers create more sustainable construction practices to limit pollution and protect residents from the harmful effect of toxic wastes. Thus, they design mechanisms to remove toxic air/water, purify the municipal water, and improve recycling. These experts are paid $90,000 a year for their services, and students will find more employment opportunities in this sector. With their expertise, environmental engineers create sustainable buildings with less CO emissions and the utilization of alternative energy sources.
5. Robotics Engineer
The automation industry has opened fresh career pathways for prospective students. We’ve now entered the age of robotics as a world operated by machines isn’t science fiction anymore. BLS expects this profession to grow by 9% (2016-26), with over 25,000 jobs expected in this sector. With the fourth industrial revolution right coming our way, engineers who can create/program machines won’t have problems finding work. Robotics engineers make $90,000 to $100,000 annually on average.
6. Industrial Engineer
Industrial engineers design plans to remove wastefulness from the production procedures. This becomes possible when a product’s quality is maximized, and cost-analysis processes are made less time-consuming. As an industrial engineer, you won’t solely focus on construction but will also oversee purchase orders, production reports, and equipment lists.
Fortunately, this profession is also one of the major occupations where employees are happy and satisfied. Making over $70,000 every year on average, these engineers aim to increase the operational productivity of industry procedures.
7. Petroleum Engineer
This field falls within the category of the highest-paid disciplines for engineers right now. Petroleum engineers work with scientists to understand the geology of the rock containing treasures such as oil and gas. They are also responsible for planning the drilling mechanism, designing the right equipment, and overseeing operations. These professionals can earn nearly $100,000 as beginners but, with experience, they make more than $130,000 every year.
Even though the world wishes to move on to electric vehicles, the need for petroleum engineers won’t die soon. So, students may still pursue a career in this industry.
People with an aptitude in science and technology should strive for career-building in the field of engineering. Undoubtedly, engineering is a diverse field with different career options for prospective students. After you get a well-established job, your responsibilities will include designing, developing, and modifying simple or complex structures.
There are various lucrative employment opportunities that you can enjoy after graduation and the required certificates. So, if you enjoy solving technical issues, engineering will be the ideal occupation for you. All you need now is to decide on which specialization interests you the most.