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Engineering Confused on which engineering to take

  1. Feb 14, 2010 #1

    This is my first post in this forum.I signed to ask some sort of guidance from you people:smile:

    Well its like this:
    I always had an interest on civil engineering for many years now (structures, skyscrapers, designing), so I knew from the start which career path I would want to take when I am on college.Now I am on college,my second semester,and thinking if I made the right decision on going to civil.I went to a couple of websites,plus talked to some people,and found out that civil is indeed the lowest paid among the other engineers.People seem not to appreciate the work civil engineers do,and this really is something I do hate very much.

    I have looked over to the other engineering subjects,and my interest seems to be now on computer science(since I love working on computers too).People doing major on this course seems to be getting a good salary,and there are good job opportunities.But I don't know which is harder here(i am guessing this is harder?).All in all, I want to take a subject that has a good salary yet not excruciatingly hard.

    Also,I talked to my advisor about this(she s on the civil engineering department),and as usual she will defend CE no matter what.
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 14, 2010 #2
    The answer is so simple. Pick the engineering discipline that you love most. If you love none of them, then get out and do something else. Really, it's that simple. Who cares what others think about civil engineering? If somehow other people's perceptions (or the salary level) really does bother you so much that you can't get past it, then do mechanical engineering with emphasis on structures, skyscrapers and designing.

    By the way, my view is that civil engineering is a great discipline with a long and outstanding history.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2010
  4. Feb 14, 2010 #3


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    If I were to do it again, I would still want to be an EE. Although I have recently become interested in CivilE, with regard to stormwater management. It seems the best of both worlds: you get to work outside (which can be awesome) collecting data, overseeing projects; you get to work "inside" constructing models of water dynamics. In Pennsylvania, sprawl puts pressure on water runnoff systems and flooding happens.

    Other advice for aspiring engineers: engineering has its ups and downs with employment--have something else in your back pocket that you like to do if you find yourself chronically out of your normal market. A side business, a trade, teaching credentials, etc. If you like math, consider becoming an actuary as a good fallback.
  5. Feb 14, 2010 #4


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    I missed this line on first pass... If something were easy then everyone could do it and there would be no money in it. I personally would like to get paid to watch TV--so far no offers. Don't fear the challenge of mastering something that is "hard". Hard work and discipline are essential for an engineer to be successful. Once you have mastered engineering fundamentals, you begin to specialize yourself in accordance with your interests. You will need to continue to learn new things to stay competitive, this can be "hard", the older you get.
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