What jobs can I get with an engineering degree?
Graduates with engineering degrees are highly sought after by employers. Having an engineering degree means you are skilled at problem solving in particular areas of engineering, as well as planning, designing, evaluating safety, finding and fixing faults. Engineers are important to local communities because new buildings, transport and infrastructure projects would be impossible without them.
So, what can you do with an engineering degree?
Types of engineering degrees and specialisations
There are many different types of engineering degree. The most widely available are:
- Mechanical engineering
- Electrical/electronic engineering
- Chemical engineering
- Civil engineering.
Some universities offer more general courses, sometimes in the first two years of a course, followed by a specialism in the final year. It may be worth thinking about what kind of engineering you want to do as a career before deciding on the type of engineering degree to study.
Engineering career opportunities for graduates
As a structural engineering technician, you will be an integral part of the design, planning and construction process for building projects. The main responsibilities of structural engineering technicians are evaluating the safety and structural integrity of buildings as well as assessing the suitability of plans and materials. Structural engineering technicians also work closely with design teams and architects to support the design and construction of buildings and structures.
Structural engineers are responsible for ensuring that structures are able to withstand various forces and conditions. This includes calculating the ability, strength and rigidity of buildings, as well as ensuring the appropriate materials are chosen for each project. Structural engineers may work on a variety of projects, including residential buildings, commercial spaces, bridges, offshore rigs, cultural institutions and even space satellites.
Degrees in structural, civic or architectural engineering would be ideal entry routes to careers in structural engineering.
Welder engineers are trained welders who specialise in the design, maintenance and development of a wide range of welding systems in various industries, such as aerospace, construction and civil engineering. They may conduct research to find more effective welding methods or design equipment to improve the efficiency of the welding process.
Plant and mechanical engineers inspect, design, install or repair machinery and equipment to ensure it is well maintained, working safely and running smoothly. This may involve investigating problems and coming up with solutions. Plant and mechanical engineers investigate and test ideas to improve existing systems, overcome machinery problems, making parts, installing and testing machinery.
Civil engineers are responsible for the planning, design and management of significant construction projects, including transportation links, buildings and other structures. They use computer modelling software and data from surveys, tests and maps to develop project blueprints. These blueprints provide guidance to contractors and aim to minimise risk and environmental impact. Some civil engineers focus on specific areas, such as transportation, environmental, geotechnical, maritime or structural projects.
Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) engineers install and service air quality and temperature systems in homes, businesses and transport. HVAC engineers ensure temperature and ventilation systems are working efficiently and safely. They survey sites prior to fitting, plan the placement of pipework, ducts and control panels, and perform quality checks, as well as general troubleshooting and helping customers reduce energy use.
A drainage engineer or drainage technician is responsible for designing systems that move water or sewage from one place to another, as safely and efficiently as possible. This can involve visiting sites to gain an understanding of project requirements, as well as designing and overseeing the installation of these systems.
The qualification requirements for drainage engineers are usually a foundation degree in a relevant subject like geology, geography, geophysics, physics, environmental science or engineering.
Continuing your education and professional development
Engineering graduates also have the option of taking their studies further. Postgraduate degrees are available in a wide range of engineering disciplines, including mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and civil engineering.
Education can continue for qualified engineers as they pursue their day-to-day jobs, in the form of continuing professional development (CPD). This could involve professionally recognised qualifications, training courses, distance learning or attending seminars and conferences. All these activities will help to improve an engineer’s practical skills, experience and competency.
Starting your engineering career: Tips and advice
Studying for a university degree is not the only route you can take into an engineering career. You could take a college course, complete an apprenticeship or apply directly to an employer if you have relevant work experience.
Discover graduate engineering opportunities at Talentview
A wide range of engineering jobs, graduate schemes and apprenticeships are advertised regularly on Talentview. You can filter your searches by job role, location and also look for management traineeships, work experience, placements and internships.