What can you do with a Mechanical Engineering Degree?

Best Jobs For Mechanical Engineering Major

The time after graduating from college can be a stressful time as you try to find your first job. As a way to help you out, we have found that there are actually a lot of job opportunities for graduates with a mechanical engineering degree. By scouring millions of job listings and scanning through 69,827 mechanical engineering major resumes we were able to find the most preferred jobs by mechanical engineering majors.

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1. Mechanical Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??New York, NY;??San Diego, CA;??Boston, MA;??Pittsburgh, PA;??Saint Louis, MO;??Chicago, IL;??Philadelphia, PA;??Orlando, FL;??Rochester, NY;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

2. Engineering Internship

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??New York, NY;??Chicago, IL;??San Diego, CA;??Dallas, TX;??San Jose, CA;??Philadelphia, PA;??Atlanta, GA;??San Francisco, CA;??Los Angeles, CA;??
Job Description:
Civil engineering technicians help civil engineers to plan, design, and build highways, bridges, utilities, and other infrastructure projects. They also help to plan, design, and build commercial, industrial, residential, and land development projects.

3. Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??New York, NY;??Chicago, IL;??Atlanta, GA;??San Diego, CA;??Austin, TX;??Dallas, TX;??Los Angeles, CA;??Denver, CO;??Las Vegas, NV;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

4. Project Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??New York, NY;??Los Angeles, CA;??Chicago, IL;??San Diego, CA;??Denver, CO;??Dallas, TX;??San Francisco, CA;??Atlanta, GA;??Tulsa, OK;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

5. Manufacturing Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Everett, WA;??Wichita, KS;??Savannah, GA;??Tulsa, OK;??Fort Worth, TX;??Charleston, SC;??Waterloo, IA;??Irvine, CA;??Jacksonville, FL;??
Job Description:
A Manufacturing Engineer plans, designs, sets up, and monitors the manufacturing processes. They work in various sectors, such as plastics, oil, pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology.
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
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6. Mechanical Engineering Internship

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??New York, NY;??San Diego, CA;??Orlando, FL;??Los Angeles, CA;??Pittsburgh, PA;??Chicago, IL;??Portland, OR;??Boston, MA;??Salt Lake City, UT;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

7. Systems Engineer

Top Locations:
New York, NY;??Houston, TX;??Dallas, TX;??Atlanta, GA;??Austin, TX;??Washington, DC;??San Diego, CA;??Huntsville, AL;??Chicago, IL;??Charlotte, NC;??
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.

8. Senior Mechanical Designer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??San Diego, CA;??San Jose, CA;??Phoenix, AZ;??Pittsburgh, PA;??Portland, OR;??Santa Clara, CA;??Albuquerque, NM;??Irvine, CA;??Rochester, NY;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

9. Process Engineer Internship

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Chicago, IL;??New York, NY;??San Jose, CA;??Atlanta, GA;??Fremont, CA;??Philadelphia, PA;??San Diego, CA;??Washington, DC;??Austin, TX;??
Job Description:
Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

10. Process Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Austin, TX;??Chandler, AZ;??Dallas, TX;??Hillsboro, OR;??Baton Rouge, LA;??San Diego, CA;??San Jose, CA;??Louisville, KY;??Rochester, NY;??
Job Description:
Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

11. Field Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Midland, TX;??San Antonio, TX;??Oklahoma City, OK;??Odessa, TX;??Williston, ND;??New York, NY;??Atlanta, GA;??Casper, WY;??Denver, CO;??
Job Description:
Electrical engineers design, develop, test, and supervise the manufacturing of electrical equipment, such as electric motors, radar and navigation systems, communications systems, and power generation equipment. Electronics engineers design and develop electronic equipment, such as broadcast and communications systems—from portable music players to global positioning systems (GPSs).

12. Mechanical Design Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??San Diego, CA;??San Jose, CA;??Orlando, FL;??Fort Worth, TX;??Irvine, CA;??Los Angeles, CA;??Wichita, KS;??Cincinnati, OH;??Huntsville, AL;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

13. Quality Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Grand Rapids, MI;??Irvine, CA;??Warsaw, IN;??Louisville, KY;??Cincinnati, OH;??San Antonio, TX;??Auburn Hills, MI;??Austin, TX;??San Diego, CA;??
Job Description:
Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

14. Design Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Wichita, KS;??San Diego, CA;??Everett, WA;??Cincinnati, OH;??New York, NY;??Portland, OR;??Atlanta, GA;??Indianapolis, IN;??San Jose, CA;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

15. Engineering Associate

Top Locations:
New York, NY;??Chicago, IL;??Pittsburgh, PA;??Atlanta, GA;??Columbia, SC;??Los Angeles, CA;??Austin, TX;??Houston, TX;??Peoria, IL;??San Diego, CA;??
Job Description:
Electrical and electronics engineering technicians help engineers design and develop computers, communications equipment, medical monitoring devices, navigational equipment, and other electrical and electronic equipment. They often work in product evaluation and testing, using measuring and diagnostic devices to adjust, test, and repair equipment. They are also involved in the manufacture and deployment of equipment for automation.

16. Product Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Auburn Hills, MI;??Austin, TX;??Dallas, TX;??San Jose, CA;??New York, NY;??Chicago, IL;??Livonia, MI;??Philadelphia, PA;??Santa Clara, CA;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

17. Sales Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Atlanta, GA;??Austin, TX;??New York, NY;??Denver, CO;??Fort Wayne, IN;??Chicago, IL;??Dallas, TX;??San Diego, CA;??Charlotte, NC;??
Job Description:
Sales engineers sell complex scientific and technological products or services to businesses. They must have extensive knowledge of the products’ parts and functions and must understand the scientific processes that make these products work.

18. Research And Development Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Cincinnati, OH;??Arlington Heights, IL;??Irvine, CA;??Marlborough, MA;??Boulder, CO;??Chicago, IL;??San Jose, CA;??Santa Clara, CA;??Franklin Lakes, NJ;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

19. Development Engineer

Top Locations:
Warsaw, IN;??Houston, TX;??Austin, TX;??New York, NY;??San Diego, CA;??Chicago, IL;??Atlanta, GA;??Auburn Hills, MI;??San Jose, CA;??Seattle, WA;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

20. Product Development Engineer

Top Locations:
Lisle, IL;??Dearborn, MI;??Warsaw, IN;??Austin, TX;??Houston, TX;??San Diego, CA;??West Chester, PA;??Overland Park, KS;??Grand Rapids, MI;??Philadelphia, PA;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

21. Co-Operations Engineer

Top Locations:
Cincinnati, OH;??Louisville, KY;??Philadelphia, PA;??Rochester, NY;??Pittsburgh, PA;??Houston, TX;??Warsaw, IN;??Birmingham, AL;??Dayton, OH;??Cleveland, OH;??
Job Description:
Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

22. Engineering Technician

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Austin, TX;??San Diego, CA;??Oklahoma City, OK;??Phoenix, AZ;??Hillsboro, OR;??Denver, CO;??Huntsville, AL;??Fort Worth, TX;??North Charleston, SC;??
Job Description:
Industrial engineering technicians help industrial engineers implement designs to use personnel, materials, and machines effectively in factories, stores, healthcare organizations, repair shops, and offices. They prepare machinery and equipment layouts, plan workflows, conduct statistical production studies, and analyze production costs.

23. Product Design Engineer

Top Locations:
Columbus, IN;??Tulsa, OK;??Tempe, AZ;??Ann Arbor, MI;??New York, NY;??Phoenix, AZ;??Baltimore, MD;??Berkeley, CA;??Grand Rapids, MI;??Houston, TX;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

24. Test Engineer

Top Locations:
San Diego, CA;??Austin, TX;??Houston, TX;??San Jose, CA;??Dallas, TX;??New York, NY;??Atlanta, GA;??Redmond, WA;??Chicago, IL;??Santa Clara, CA;??
Job Description:
A Test Engineer is focused on planning, designing, and evaluating products. They interact with other engineering groups to define, analyze, and perform tests for products, systems, and components.

25. Junior Engineer

Top Locations:
New York, NY;??Norfolk, VA;??San Diego, CA;??San Francisco, CA;??Charlotte, NC;??Cincinnati, OH;??Houston, TX;??Philadelphia, PA;??San Jose, CA;??Barberton, OH;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

26. Mechanical Designer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Milwaukee, WI;??San Diego, CA;??Cincinnati, OH;??Tulsa, OK;??New York, NY;??Columbus, OH;??Irvine, CA;??Denver, CO;??Greenville, SC;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

27. Field Service Technician

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Chicago, IL;??New York, NY;??Austin, TX;??Dallas, TX;??San Antonio, TX;??San Diego, CA;??Atlanta, GA;??Midland, TX;??Oklahoma City, OK;??
Job Description:
Heavy vehicle and mobile equipment service technicians inspect, maintain, and repair vehicles and machinery used in construction, farming, rail transportation, and other industries.

28. Senior Mechanical Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??San Diego, CA;??San Jose, CA;??Chicago, IL;??Irvine, CA;??Austin, TX;??Charlotte, NC;??Fremont, CA;??Pittsburgh, PA;??Redmond, WA;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

29. Manufacturing Engineering Internship

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Anoka, MN;??San Diego, CA;??Grand Rapids, MI;??Irvine, CA;??Los Angeles, CA;??Fremont, CA;??Lafayette, IN;??San Jose, CA;??Detroit, MI;??
Job Description:
Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

30. Application Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??San Jose, CA;??Austin, TX;??Dallas, TX;??Atlanta, GA;??Charlotte, NC;??Chicago, IL;??Milwaukee, WI;??New York, NY;??Salt Lake City, UT;??
Job Description:
Sales engineers sell complex scientific and technological products or services to businesses. They must have extensive knowledge of the products’ parts and functions and must understand the scientific processes that make these products work.

31. Staff Engineer

Top Locations:
San Diego, CA;??Houston, TX;??San Jose, CA;??San Francisco, CA;??Irvine, CA;??Austin, TX;??Nashville, TN;??Naperville, IL;??Sunnyvale, CA;??Chicago, IL;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

32. Principal Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??San Jose, CA;??San Diego, CA;??Austin, TX;??Irvine, CA;??Santa Clara, CA;??Atlanta, GA;??Boulder, CO;??Charlotte, NC;??Chicago, IL;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

33. Maintenance Engineer

Top Locations:
New York, NY;??Las Vegas, NV;??Chicago, IL;??Washington, DC;??Orlando, FL;??Atlanta, GA;??Houston, TX;??Dallas, TX;??New Orleans, LA;??Seattle, WA;??
Job Description:
General maintenance and repair workers fix and maintain machines, mechanical equipment, and buildings. They paint, repair flooring, and work on plumbing, electrical, and air-conditioning and heating systems.

34. Mechanic

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??New York, NY;??San Antonio, TX;??Phoenix, AZ;??Las Vegas, NV;??Indianapolis, IN;??Oklahoma City, OK;??Wichita, KS;??Denver, CO;??Philadelphia, PA;??
Job Description:
Diesel service technicians and mechanics inspect, repair, and overhaul buses and trucks, or maintain and repair any type of diesel engine.

35. Associate Mechanical Engineer

Top Locations:
Chicago, IL;??Orlando, FL;??Colorado Springs, CO;??San Diego, CA;??Middleton, WI;??New York, NY;??Waltham, MA;??Bakersfield, CA;??Boston, MA;??Cambridge, MA;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

36. Product Engineering Internship

Top Locations:
New York, NY;??Los Angeles, CA;??San Francisco, CA;??Chicago, IL;??Houston, TX;??Auburn Hills, MI;??Boston, MA;??Columbus, IN;??Dallas, TX;??Dearborn, MI;??
Job Description:
Market research analysts study market conditions to examine potential sales of a product or service. They help companies understand what products people want, who will buy them, and at what price.

37. Junior Mechanical Engineer

Top Locations:
New York, NY;??Albuquerque, NM;??Alexandria, VA;??Atascadero, CA;??Bensalem, PA;??Bethel, CT;??Binghamton, NY;??Danvers, MA;??East Rancho Dominguez, CA;??Edmond, OK;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

38. Technical Internship

Top Locations:
New York, NY;??Chicago, IL;??Boston, MA;??Houston, TX;??Washington, DC;??Los Angeles, CA;??Philadelphia, PA;??Detroit, MI;??Atlanta, GA;??Phoenix, AZ;??
Job Description:
Computer support specialists provide help and advice to people and organizations using computer software or equipment. Some, called computer network support specialists, support information technology (IT) employees within their organization. Others, called computer user support specialists, assist non-IT users who are having computer problems.

39. Research Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??San Diego, CA;??Atlanta, GA;??New York, NY;??Rochester, NY;??Salt Lake City, UT;??Hampton, VA;??Tempe, AZ;??Austin, TX;??Boston, MA;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

40. Senior Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??New York, NY;??Atlanta, GA;??Austin, TX;??San Francisco, CA;??San Diego, CA;??San Jose, CA;??Chicago, IL;??Denver, CO;??Washington, DC;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

41. Industrial Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Everett, WA;??Indianapolis, IN;??North Charleston, SC;??Fort Worth, TX;??Memphis, TN;??Pascagoula, MS;??Atlanta, GA;??Dallas, TX;??Detroit, MI;??
Job Description:
Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

42. Software Engineer

Top Locations:
San Francisco, CA;??New York, NY;??Austin, TX;??San Diego, CA;??San Jose, CA;??Seattle, WA;??Houston, TX;??Chicago, IL;??Boston, MA;??Atlanta, GA;??
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.

43. Production Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Midland, TX;??Denver, CO;??Georgetown, KY;??Oklahoma City, OK;??Tulsa, OK;??Chicago, IL;??Los Angeles, CA;??New York, NY;??San Antonio, TX;??
Job Description:
Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

44. Design Engineer Internship

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Wichita, KS;??New York, NY;??San Diego, CA;??Dallas, TX;??Los Angeles, CA;??Saint Louis, MO;??Chandler, AZ;??Chicago, IL;??Jackson, MN;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

45. Engine Mechanic

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??Phoenix, AZ;??San Diego, CA;??Tulsa, OK;??Everett, WA;??Fort Campbell North, KY;??Las Vegas, NV;??Melrose Park, IL;??Mobile, AL;??Oklahoma City, OK;??
Job Description:
Small engine mechanics inspect, service, and repair motorized power equipment. Mechanics often specialize in one type of equipment, such as motorcycles, motorboats, or outdoor power equipment.

46. Reliability Engineer

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??San Diego, CA;??Philadelphia, PA;??Solon, OH;??Chicago, IL;??East Chicago, IN;??Fort Dodge, IA;??Huntsville, AL;??Los Angeles, CA;??Orlando, FL;??
Job Description:
Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

47. Systems Administrator

Top Locations:
New York, NY;??Houston, TX;??Washington, DC;??Austin, TX;??Atlanta, GA;??San Diego, CA;??Dallas, TX;??Chicago, IL;??Phoenix, AZ;??San Antonio, TX;??
Job Description:
Computer networks are critical parts of almost every organization. Network and computer systems administrators are responsible for the day-to-day operation of these networks.

48. Mechanical Design Internship

Top Locations:
Houston, TX;??New York, NY;??Chicago, IL;??Palo Alto, CA;??San Diego, CA;??Huntsville, AL;??Pomona, CA;??Albany, NY;??Atlanta, GA;??Attleboro, MA;??
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

Mechanical Engineering Major Jobs

Average Salary For a Mechanical Engineering Major

Depending on the industry that mechanical engineering majors work in, their salaries can vary significantly. In fact, we found that mechanical engineering majors who work in the technology industry have an average salary of $72,972, while those who work in the education industry have an average salary of $45,548. If salary is the most important thing to you, then you should look for jobs in the technology industry.

Average Salary
$65,248
Show Salaries
Best Paying Industries
Industry
Average Salary
Technology
Technology
$72,972
$73k
Automotive
Automotive
$71,639
$72k
Manufacturing
Manufacturing
$68,652
$69k
Construction
Construction
$67,470
$67k
Finance
Finance
$61,579
$62k

Entry Level Jobs For Mechanical Engineering Majors

What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the right jobs to get there.

Mechanical Engineering Internships

How To Get A Job With A Mechanical Engineering Degree

Having made it to this page, if there's one thing you've probably learned so far about the field of Engineering, it's that it's pretty darn specific.

There are a few broad categories of the engineering field, like electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, and chemical engineering, along with more recent additions like geotechnical engineering and management. But these divisions are just the tip of the iceberg, as each of these groups contains dozens of subgroups, each of which tend to be the subject of their own individual major.

In particular, Mechanical Engineering is one of the oldest of all Engineering-related disciplines, and itself is now broken up into numerous sub-disciplines like mechanics, thermodynamics, and structural analysis. No matter the specifics, the job of a Mechanical Engineer is to design and maintain mechanical systems relevant to their chosen Engineering subset.

But the question remains: where are you going to do it? And how do you get a position in your chosen Engineering discipline?

Well, that's where we come in. We literally created a map, just for Mechanical Engineering Majors such as yourself, to navigate your way through the choppy waters of recent graduation.

Feel free to focus on the map alone -- it's pretty cool, if we do say so ourselves. But for those of you who prefer step by step navigation on your path, keep reading. We'll give you the rundown on:

  • What skills you'll need
  • How to begin
  • What jobs you can expect to find as a Mechanical Engineering Major
  • Some quick interview tips
  • Consider graduate school
  • External resources

First thing's first: what skills you'll need to get started.

1. Skills for Mechanical Engineering Majors

Skills for engineers tend to be similar to other majors that fall under the broad umbrella of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). All of these majors require an ability to remain precise on the smallest pieces of colossal projects, acting as impartially as possible while making use of provable, observable information in your day-to-day work life.

Let's take a a look at what this means for engineering in particular:

Attention to detail.

You have a head for numbers, and spotting and correcting mistakes at every step in the process is second nature to you. This is certainly a skill that other professions can lay some sort of claim to, but when it comes to the practice of engineering, you're playing with live ammo (possibly literally, if you're an Ammunition Engineer). When people's lives are occasionally dependent on your ability to make precise measurements, you tend to become a little detail-oriented.

Team skills/interpersonal skills.

It's not often that you get to pull the lone ranger act during the practice of engineering. Typically, you'll be working as part of a team while completing projects, and your ability to play nicely with others is integral to your capacity for succeeding in the field at large. It's also integral to getting anything at all accomplished on a day-to-day basis.

Problem-solving and analysis.

This is the big one. As an engineer of any stripe, the majority of your work will be on projects that, in a nutshell, require you to find a solution to some sort of problem based on the skills you've developed. While most jobs can (at a basic level) be broken down to that description, with engineering you tend to have a much clearer idea of whether or not your solution works, as the problem you're solving is often clear.

2. Where to Begin Your Career After Getting a Mechanical Engineering Degree

When you're just getting started in the Mechanical Engineering field, there's two things you're going to want to keep an eye on: I) internships, and II) placements.

Most people are aware of what an internship is -- you work with a company on a provisional (and typically, but not always, unpaid) basis, and attempt to parlay that experience into either a job at the same location or as the basis for your full employment at a different location. These are usually short affairs, often no longer than a month but sometimes stretching to half a year depending on the difficulty and competitiveness of the position/company.

Placements are the same basic concept with a few small changes. For one thing, they're typically longer, lasting for about 1 year. They can be either paid or unpaid, but either way they typically make up the third year of a four year degree -- a change from internships, which are usually part-time and completed either alongside or immediately following a degree.

At this point we like to list the kind of internships available to people with this degree, but there's not much point to that when it comes to Mechanical Engineering. Placements and internships exist in essentially every subgroup of engineering, provided that there is a company around to offer them. So whatever your engineering specialty, there's almost certainly a placement or internship available to you somewhere out there -- depending on how specific your chosen discipline is, it's more just a matter of how far you're willing to move for it, and how qualified of a candidate you are.

Before you settle on an internship or placement, though, you'll want to make sure it's the right fit for you. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Where (in the state/the country/the world) do you want to work?
  • What size and type of organization do you want to work for?
  • Do you need compensation in an internship, or might you be able to consider alternative compensation (experience, work samples, references, networking, etc.)
  • Is relocation an option?

3. Available Jobs For Mechanical Engineering Majors

In addition to being extremely employable and handsomely compensated, one thing that's pretty great as far as Engineers go is that they're rarely at a loss for how they should use their degree. An Engineer's skillset is so particular that you can pretty much expect, for example, an Electrical Engineering Major to go on to become an Electrical Engineer.

Likewise, a Mechanical Engineering Major can reasonably expect "Mechanical Engineer" to be a solid option once they get to the job market. Even so, there are still a ton of other careers available to any Engineering Major, and deciding which one to choose can be quite the process.

With our map, you can click the Job Titles and learn more specific information for each position (what their responsibilities are, how much they get paid, etc.) But here, we wanted to call out some of the most common jobs for recent Mechanical Engineering Major grads.

Here are a few of the most interesting jobs for recent grads such as yourself:

Mechanical Engineer

It makes sense that you'd be able to use your degree in Mechanical Engineering to become a Mechanical Engineer. Mechanical engineers research, design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

Project Engineer

Project Engineers help develop and design products for a variety of purposes and needs. They're responsible for providing technical leadership, tracking project construction progress, assisting with project development and maintenance, and preparing, reviewing, and submitting project proposals.

Manufacturing Engineer

Manufacturing Engineers are responsible for improving the manufacturing process itself, analyzing the the assembly, quality, safety, delivery, and other systems that make up the manufacturing process in order to suggest (or even create) possible alternatives in order to optimize manufacturing efficiency.

4. Some Quick Job Search Tips for Mechanical Engineering Majors

Experience, First and Foremost

Whether it be through internships, year in industry placements, or entry level positions, the most helpful thing when it comes to finding a full-time position in Engineering is to rack up industry experience wherever and whenever you can.

As mentioned above, placements are often a requirement of four-year degrees, which can be extremely helpful in this regard. But in either case, make sure that you are always on the lookout for anything that might help you get a little more experience/resume fodder.

Talk to your school and see if they have any resources to help you find something along these lines (they typically do). If you're lucky, they may be able to get you in touch with certain alumni working in the field, and they can often assist you with building your resume to industry standards.

Two to three months interning at a company should give you plenty of training to find a job early on, so long as you can afford to spend that amount of time not being a full Engineer. Many internships are at least partly compensated, but not all, so be sure to plan your finances accordingly.

Start building your portfolio.

As early as you can, part of what you should be doing alongside racking up industry experience is documenting that experience in some way. If you can take pictures of your work, do so.

Along with these pictures you should include writing samples, sketches, explanations of projects you worked on, charts -- whatever you can scrape together that somehow gets across your skills and experience. Whatever you do, make sure this experience is in plain sight to whoever your portfolio's intended audience is.

Your portfolio can take many forms, but one of the best options is a professional website -- even if it's just on a free blogging website, it's helpful to have something interactive that's easy for potential employers to access. Plus anyone googling you has an increased chance of encountering your work directly, which is always a plus.

5. Continuing Education and Certifications in Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical Engineering credentials

In Mechanical Engineering, there are three sorts of credentials available to you: licenses, registrations, and certifications. The first two of these are mandatory, while the certification depends on your own individual wants and needs.

License

  • What you need to do your job at all, licenses are under the strict purview of your country's government

Registration

  • Registration is a listing with some sort of organization or entity -- these are usually handed out by whatever leading professional organization governs your particular branch of engineering

Certification

  • Certifications tend to be optional, but often serve as proof of your ability to do a certain engineering-associated skill or task. Depending on the company, certain certifications might be required in a de facto way, if not listed explicitly as an employment requirement

Pursuing an advanced degree

Obtaining a graduate degree in your course of study can serve as an excellent way to separate you from the herd - but you must first decide whether it's worth your time.

Mechanical Engineers are some of the most employable workers in the nation, but competition is fierce. Whether or not you need additional education varies wildly depending on your particular specialization, but a good rule of thumb is that the more science/research based your engineering specialization is, the more education is required of you.

Here are common advanced degrees that people with an Engineering degree normally consider:

Master's in Mechanical Engineering

  • Good for bolstering your practical skills, especially for engineering fields lacking a focus in hard sciences. Be wary of taking on extra debt, however -- a post-graduate internship (or even entry-level employment) may be a better choice from a simple experience perspective. As always, this depends on your personal situation and engineering specialty

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering)

  • Basically required for the more research or hard-science based engineering specialties, like chemical or biomedical engineering. For other engineering divisions -- including Civil Engineering -- it can be useful, but it's often more relevant if your intention is to remain in academia rather than enter the field itself

6. External Resources

If you're still not sure what to do with your degree here are some external sites, to help you with your decision:

National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE)

One of the largest professional organizations dedicated to engineering. Their primary concern, as described on their website, is the "protection of the public health, safety, and welfare above all other considerations," and for the practice of engineering to be practiced in an ethical and competent way.

American Association of Engineering Societies (AAES)

Another professional organization for engineers. The AAES was founded in the 1970s and, similar to the NSPE, focuses on no single branch of engineering, preferring a broader approach to supporting the field.

USAJobs

Enter "[blank]" into the search bar and you can get a sense of what kind of government jobs are available to Visual and Performing Arts Majors. Find a job title you like and come back here to learn more about it.

Bureau Of Labor Statistics

The BLS offers detailed data on pay, location, and availability of different kinds of jobs across the country.

In fact, we draw a lot of our research on the best places for jobs from the information provided on the site.

And if this all seems like a lot - don't worry - the hard part (getting your degree!) is already over.

Updated July 15, 2020
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