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Advice on temporay career move

  1. Jun 28, 2014 #1
    Hi Everyone,

    I have a B.S. in Plastics Engineering Technology.
    I spent the first 4 years of my post college career as a specialist with the responsibilities of troubleshooting plastics processing equipment, training, creating procedures, and optimizing processes. I than took on a position as a supervisor to expand my understanding of manufacturing from the managerial side, which also came with a pay increase.

    I feel that I have advanced as far I could with this company and am planning to move on. I got comfortable because this was a safe job. I realized now that I will be stuck here if I don't start seeking other opportunities. I no longer enjoy my work and feel that staying longer would make it very challenging for me to get an engineering position later on, which many of my peers have acquired out of college.

    I have some leads within the engineering industry, but I don't know how long it will take for me to get an interview or even hired. I have a guaranteed opportunity right now to become an electronic technician which, doesn't require a four year degree at all. It also pays better than my current position. This opportunity could get me started near an area that I want to live in since it's near my family and friends. I am not one to work for a few months and leave. I know these people as well. My commitment would be for 1.5 to 2 years.

    My questions for anyone willing to answer are:

    1) What are your recommendations for making the best out of these two years so that I don't
    waste my degree and be able to find engineering jobs later other.
    2) How could I explain this career move if I do get an engineering interview after my commitment
    is up.
    3) One of my career interests is to design manufacturing machinery and I feel that some of the things I'll
    learn as a technician could apply towards these goals, especially with electronics. Do you
    think these skills would be beneficial for someone who wants to design manufacturing
    machinery?
    4) Do you have recommendations for engineering jobs that could utilize my background in Plastics
    Engineering Technology, Supervision, and electronics technician?

    Thank you.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 28, 2014 #2
    I work in the plastics processing industry and it is not uncommon for technical staff to move into positions with machinery suppliers. A good starting point would be to foster relations with your machine suppliers, but it sounds like high are past that point. I don't think you need to worry unduly about justifying the move, just be honest about what you enjoy doing. Don't feel these two years are wasted as you have had a valuable opportunity to see the process from the other side. This is a positive - play it up!
     
  4. Jun 28, 2014 #3
    Hi Jilang,

    Thank you for your encouraging advice. You make sense, my years as a supervisor were very valuable and I will play it up. For the next two years I have an offer to be an electronic technician (installing, troubleshooting, repairing) which is far from plastics processing. Do you think that would harm my future prospects of being an engineer?

    Thank you kindly.
     
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