Aerospace Engineer or Mechanical Engineer?

In summary, the conversation is about a student trying to decide between majoring in Aerospace or Mechanical Engineering, with the goal of working for Boeing in the future. They are considering the differences in opportunities and stability between the two fields and whether getting a minor in one would be beneficial. Another person in the conversation shares their experience of choosing mechanical engineering and then pursuing a master's degree in aerospace. They also mention that companies like Boeing have specific requirements for their engineers and suggest considering a dual degree program. It is mentioned that aerospace engineering focuses on fluid flow and heat transfer while mechanical engineering focuses on mechanical properties, but that both fields are necessary for designing and building aircraft.
  • #1
Goopy17
39
0
Hi,
I am trying to decide whether I should major in Aerospace or Mechanical Engineering. I want to work for Boeing after college doing something with airplanes. I'm going to be a senior in high school next year. Should I go for aerospace or mechanical? I know since I want to work on planes, probably aerospace, but mechanical has more opportunities and is more stable; you can also work for boeing with a mechanical engineering degree. Which one should I do? Should I get a minor in one?
Thanks
 
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  • #2
I chose to do mechanical engineering but do want to go into aerospace, i will just do my masters in aerospace. I think for the main topics (well in the UK anywaya) the units are quite similar and it is just the name that changes and a very slight variation on units towards the end of your course.
 
  • #3
do boeing specify what degree you need for their engineers?
 
  • #4
HAHA, a masters in aerospace engineering isn't the same as mechanical. Heck, the principles aren't even the same. Mechanical engineering focuses on the mechanical properties of materials and structures. Aerospace engineering focuses on the properties of fluid flow and heat transfer. I mean, unless you are doing something like aerospace design or aerospace structures.

Goopy, if you are still looking at this thread, there are things you need to sort out:
1) Can you go into a program that offers a dual Aerospace/Mechanical degree. That's what I did and it is nice to have the ability to go into either field.

2) Do you want to work on structures and components or do you want to analyze aerodynamics, lift, efficiency, etc? If you want to do the more conventional "engineering" then you might want to think about mechanical. Yes, places like boeing hire mechanical engineers, that's how they get things built. But don't be fooled, they don't just hire any old Joe who has a degree. Companies like Boeing are world leaders, and hire accordingly. Hence, again, you might want to think about a dual major.

Aeronautical engineers analyze fluid flow and aerodynamics, mostly. Mechies design components. You will never find yourself in a position where you, alone, will design a wing or anything else for that matter. You will work on a crossfunctional team to do pretty much any major design.
 
  • #5
for reaching out! Both aerospace and mechanical engineering are great options for someone interested in working with airplanes and for a company like Boeing. Ultimately, the decision between the two will depend on your personal interests and strengths. Aerospace engineering will focus more specifically on the design and development of aircraft and spacecraft, while mechanical engineering will cover a broader range of topics, including mechanics, materials, and energy systems.

If you are passionate about aircraft design and want to specialize in that area, then aerospace engineering may be the better choice for you. However, if you are interested in a wider range of engineering applications and want to keep your options open, then mechanical engineering may be the way to go.

It's important to also consider the curriculum of each program and see which one aligns more with your career goals and interests. You can also look into internships and job opportunities at Boeing to see what types of roles they typically hire for and what qualifications they require.

As for getting a minor, it can certainly be beneficial in terms of gaining knowledge and skills in a specific area. However, it's not necessary for either major and may add extra time and coursework to your degree. It would be worth researching the specific minors offered at your university and seeing if any align with your interests and goals.

In the end, it's important to choose a major that you are passionate about and will enjoy studying for the next four years. Both aerospace and mechanical engineering are highly valued and in-demand fields, so whichever one you choose, you will have many opportunities for a successful career in the aerospace industry. Best of luck in your decision-making process!
 

Related to Aerospace Engineer or Mechanical Engineer?

1. What is the difference between an Aerospace Engineer and a Mechanical Engineer?

An Aerospace Engineer specializes in the design, development, and testing of aircraft, spacecraft, and other aerospace-related systems. On the other hand, a Mechanical Engineer focuses on the design, analysis, and production of mechanical systems, such as engines, machines, and tools. While there is some overlap in their skill sets, Aerospace Engineers have a more specific focus on advanced technologies and materials for aerospace applications, whereas Mechanical Engineers have a broader range of applications in various industries.

2. Can an Aerospace Engineer work as a Mechanical Engineer, and vice versa?

Yes, both Aerospace and Mechanical Engineers can work in each other's fields with the right education and experience. However, it is more common for Aerospace Engineers to transition into Mechanical Engineering roles than vice versa, as Aerospace Engineering requires more specialized knowledge and skills.

3. What are the job responsibilities of an Aerospace Engineer?

An Aerospace Engineer's job responsibilities may include designing and testing aircraft and spacecraft, developing and implementing new technologies and materials, analyzing and solving complex engineering problems, and managing projects and teams. They may also be involved in research and development, maintenance and repair, and quality control.

4. Is there a demand for Aerospace and Mechanical Engineers?

Yes, there is a high demand for both Aerospace and Mechanical Engineers in various industries, including aerospace, automotive, manufacturing, and energy. With advancements in technology and an increasing focus on sustainability, there is a growing need for skilled engineers in these fields.

5. What qualifications are needed to become an Aerospace or Mechanical Engineer?

To become an Aerospace Engineer, you typically need at least a bachelor's degree in Aerospace Engineering, although some employers may also accept degrees in Mechanical or Electrical Engineering. For Mechanical Engineering, a bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering is typically required. Both fields may also require additional certifications or licenses, depending on the specific job and industry.

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