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Future of EE

  1. Dec 30, 2011 #1
    Im a 2nd year EE student and lately I have been worrying about if i am in the right engineering field before I start to go into my major and I wanted to know is EE a promising engineering field? and if not, which engineering field is?
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2011
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 31, 2011 #2
    Electronics is the future, question is whether it is here or other country. The short sightness that we out source the jobs and train the other countries what we are the strongest might sent the jobs away for good.

    That said, don't look at it only as a career. First ask yourself whether you like it or not. In the 90s when jobs were abundant, lots of people become EE where they have no place to be at. They just went in for the money. Ask yourself whether it is your interest first. Go with your heart, not your brain.

    Also, it depends on how well you are doing in the classes also. Be realistic. If you struggle to get mostly C's and some B's, particularly if you are in some state college, there might be a message for you. Hate to sound negative, it's a cold world.
  4. Dec 31, 2011 #3
    I mean, they were willing to outsource the unskilled labor overseas, why wouldn't they do the same with skilled jobs?
  5. Dec 31, 2011 #4
    The difference is the country need high tech experties to be on top of the world. It is very obvious that we cannot compete in the low skilled labor market because we have unions and all the safety and environmental regulation that make the cost too high to have this kind of production in the US. Like it or not, there are plenty of people in the rest of the world willing to work for a penny to a dollar there. Nobody said it's fare, but that is the truth. But sending our high tech jobs over to China, Taiwan, India got to be the worst. They have plenty of highly educated people eager to gain experience. We are handing all these over on a silver platter. Once they get the experience, they'll never look back.

    Think about in 1941, Japan destroy most of our battle ships, we were behind when we first join the WWII. But in two years, we out produced Japan and German in everything. Our armament were not the best, but we out produced Japan and German by so so much that we steam rolled them. Sadly anything happen like this again, we might not even have the infrastructure to pull anything close to like that again. I corresponded with a professor in UC Berkley on the EM class, he said they might not even hold the class that year because of the lack of enrollment. We will lost a whole generation of talent soon.

    Being a Chinese originally from Hong Kong, I can assure you the education standard in Hong Kong and China is so much higher. People take education very serious unlike a lot of the people here. People there glorify science where most of the students here take the easy way out going into business major because of the money and to avoid math. I took the ODE class in those junior college and it was a disgrace. Not only they choose the best three test out of four so you can afford to flunk one. There was always a question out of 15 that asked something like "who was the first president of United States?".......I am serious!!! I corresponded with two professor of EM class in San Jose State. It was not pretty. One professor was kind enough to gave me the answer of all the homework and I worked through all of them. They use just about the easiest EM book known.....By Ulaby. It is a good book for really really beginners, but good luck on learning EM if you attended that class. I had to get the book by Cheng and Griffiths and rework a lot of the problems to learn. Same for the PDE class offer in SJSU, they use the PDE book by Asmar which is about the easiest and they still skip all the 3D topics and the Bessel and Lagendre function. I had to supplement with the book by Strauss. Those public school worry more about people's feeling and political correctness than really educate. If people get mostly C's even with some B's in these kind of school only, they should really re-access!!! It's a cold world.

    Sorry about all the ranting, it's just sadden me to see the new generation more into video games than anything else. A lot of people have problem with very basic math. Standard of most of the public schools are so much lower than private school even though we waste so much money on the public education system. The closest private university to me is U of Santa Clara. I corresponded with the professors there and look at their text books and what they cover in the classes, I can tell you it's a different world. You get a B in the class, it means something. I graduated from U of San Francisco, at the time I though it was a joke.......until I enrolled a few classes in those junior colleges and corresponded with a lot of the professors.
  6. Dec 31, 2011 #5


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    "They" are doing that with skilled jobs already. You just have to keep running faster to stay ahead. EE is no different from any other profession in this. It's called "living in the real world" - you just have to get used to it.
  7. Dec 31, 2011 #6
    To me, if you want to see the perpetuation of your field, the best to do is study it. Like any other, if no one studies or contributes to theory and concepts of electrical engineering, it will disappear. Like how the Romans had to 'rediscover' glass after the classical Egyptian culture collapsed.

    This time reminds me much like the end the 19th century. At that time, it was common, especially for those in the British Empire, to think there was nothing left to be discovered. That, as a species, we have come to know everything. However you argue that statement, not every person knows every thing.

    It is important for our society as a whole to have experts of a field. If you get bored with EE, don't just abandon it; add on to it: e.g. my first college required any major in the arts and sciences school to take a history of science course. You may try adding another school of thought similar to what you are studying now, or you may want to take something else completely opposite of what you are doing now.

    Please don't become despondent because it seems that 'jobs' are moving to another country from yours. Any self-labeled developed nation-state requires people with skills like yours, not just engineering skills, but those that allow you to learn and adapt sooner than others.

    If I were to claim to predict things, I would say that the studies of electricity and magnetism will be the light guiding us through the fog of confusion; but I don't predict things, I imagine them.
  8. Jan 2, 2012 #7
    Professional jobs are moving. Outsourcing of engineering is very real. That doesn't mean that there isn't value in the profession, because there is; a lot of value.

    But, you have to be prepared. Simply having a BSEE plaque isn't enough to guarantee you a career. The new standard is the MSEE - especially if you're new.

    My advice is to research the various fields of electrical engineering, find the one that fits you, where you wish to live, etc...( Some disciplines only have a few strong hiring locations) Then get the appropriate MSEE.
  9. Jan 2, 2012 #8
    As Mike in Piano said get a MSEE. Or PhD for better. In my opinion EE jobs will never go down along with other core engg. Even intel is pushing its limit to follow the Moore's law.
  10. Jan 2, 2012 #9
    I believe there were too many people getting into EE in the late 90s and early 2000s because the market was hot. There are also a lot of people that are not very good and gone through college with even MSEE or PHDEE. So company get a lot of applications with the higher degrees. In those public schools, you really have to fail the class. You still can get a degree with mostly C's. I wonder how much they really learn from school. Too many engineers do a bad job even though they have a degree, maybe that's why companies look for higher degree to hire and hopping that will at least screen out the bad apples.

    Having a degree don't mean you can do a good job, seen too many of the bad workers having degree. Particular as I kept talking about people go into the field because of the money and they are not up to it. face it, you can get a degree and be lousy at it. I knew a guy that has BSEE, he absolutely did not know how to design at all. Later he quit and pursue a PhD and want to be a professor!!!! I feel bad for the student under him in the future.
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