When I grow up I want to be…an engineer

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When I grow up I want to be…an engineer

When you were little, did you love Lego? Were you always curious and ‘hands-on’ as a child? Well, looks like you were showing early signs of being perfect for a career in engineering!

If you like the sound of a career that is full of variety and requires innovative thinking, but also requires skill and logic, this career could be the one for you. You’re not alone – 32% of all graduate vacancies at leading UK Employers in 2013 were engineering roles.

The great thing about engineering as an industry is that there is so much variety – no matter your interests or strengths, there’s most likely a branch of engineering that will be a perfect match for you.

Hold up a sec….how do I get into this business?


Explore degrees relevant to engineering

There are number of specific degree areas that fall under the umbrella of ‘engineering’, so it’s up to you to choose the course that will interest you the most. Typical relevant degree areas include:

For any of you who aren’t keen on going to university to study for a degree in engineering, there are a number of other routes to your dream career, including apprenticeships and vocational schemes.

However, it’s worth keeping in mind that engineering graduates could earn around £243,730 more over their working life compared to those who begin work straight after A-levels.

  • Aerospace engineering
  • Civil engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Electrical and electronic engineering
  • Engineering mathematics
  • Mechanical engineering

For any of you who aren’t keen on going to university to study for a degree in engineering, there are a number of other routes to your dream career, including apprenticeships and vocational schemes.

However, it’s worth keeping in mind that engineering graduates could earn around £243,730 more over their working life compared to those who begin work straight after A-levels.



Excellent societies for engineering

Engineering is an industry that is likely to heavily involve team work. You can get to know other engineers at your university by joining the engineering societies.

Luckily, these are normally very large societies, so not only will you network with other engineers, hopefully there should be some awesome socials for you to attend!

In order to enhance your teamwork and leadership skills, put yourself forward for President/Vice President/Treasurer positions within the engineering society. If you can, join other non-engineering societies to learn an additional extra-curricular skill, whether this be martial arts or maybe even the knitting society (whatever floats your boat!), this will be beneficial in giving you experience outside of the engineering-bubble. Anything that demonstrates your practical problem solving skills will be a bonus.

Finally, if you’ve still got some time to play with, many university engineering departments run extra-curricular engineering projects that you can get involved in. This will put you ahead of the competition, as you will have shown an interest in your subject area outside of your studies.


Experience with top engineering companies

The top employers for engineering graduates will offer work experience to you during your time at university – there are lots of opportunities to take on placements and internships, but what is on offer varies between companies.

Work experience is invaluable, offering you a direct insight into your future career and helping you decide if it’s right for you.

Some of the top employers for graduates looking to become engineers are…drum roll please!:

  • Rolls-Royce
  • ​Airbus
  • BAE Systems
  • BMW
  • Siemens
  • Jaguar Land Rover
  • Network Rail

Before pplying to engineering placements, don't forget to do through research into both the industry and the company - they will test you very thoroughly on your knowledge, so be prepared.

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