3 Engineering Careers to Consider this National Engineers Week

Stefani Falkowski
February 20, 2019

Engineers are constantly innovating and providing solutions to both big and small challenges all around us. From designing the roads we travel on every day, to testing spacecrafts, and creating the latest technologies, engineers make a huge impact on the world.

Engineers have a bright future ahead. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects nearly 140,000 additional engineering jobs by 2026. In celebration of National Engineers Week, here are three on-demand engineering career paths you should consider:

Civil Engineering

Every day, we’re impacted by the work of civil engineers. When we get on the road, ride public transportation, or take a drink of water, we have civil engineers to thank—but civil engineers do a lot more than build roads and bridges. Now, more than ever, civil engineers have an important role in ensuring our planet is sustainable and ready for the future.

According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, “Civil engineers design, build, and maintain the foundation for our modern society.” Civil engineering dates back to the beginning of civilization and is one of the largest sectors in the engineering field.

Civil engineers can specialize in architectural, construction, environmental, traffic, transportation, and structural engineering to name a few specialties. And they’re well paid! According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for civil engineers was $84.8k in 2017 and the top 10 percent made more than $138k.

The work of civil engineers will be crucial in the years to come as we face sustainability challenges and as we look for renewable -energy solutions. Civil engineering jobs are projected to grow 11 percent by 2026 (BLS).

Mechanical Engineering

Are you creative and a problem solver? If you enjoy hands-on work and analyzing data, you may want to consider a career in mechanical engineering!

Mechanical engineers research, design, build, and test anything from the phone in your pocket to automobiles and spacecrafts. As a mechanical engineer, you’re at the forefront of technology, tasked with creating and innovating products and machines that meet human need and solve problems.

Mechanical engineering jobs are always on demand and these engineers have a variety of career options across many industries. Mechanical engineers find work in industries such as automation, automotive, biotechnology, computers and electronics, and energy industries and they can work both on the design and manufacturing process of a product.

Like their civil engineering peers, the median pay for mechanical engineers in 2017 was $85.9k, with the top 10 percent earning $134k (BLS).

Computer Engineering

The device you’re currently using to read this article was probably engineered by a computer engineer! Computer engineering is where electronic engineering meets computer sciences. These engineers design, test, analyze, and update computer hardware and systems.

Computers and mechanisms for communication are embedded in almost everything we use, making computer engineering a rapidly growing field. Computer engineers are sought after in industries such as computer manufacturing, defense contractors, finance, and transportation.

With such high demand, computer engineers typically have some of the highest starting salaries in engineering, with the average starting salary at $72.6k. The top 10 percent of computer engineers earned $177k in 2017 (BLS).

Ready to become an engineer? Follow @NAFCareerAcads on Instagram for more on #EWeek2019 and weekly career tips.

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Stefani Falkowski is the Digital Marketing Manager at NAF. She's passionate about universal access to education and giving a platform to students across the country doing incredible things. Stefani writes about workforce development, career building, and the impact of the NAF network.