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Man's Search For Meaning

  1. Jan 12, 2012 #1
    For reference I haven't read the book yet, it's next after I finish Emanuel Derman's book.

    A brief history: I received my BS in Kinesiology, basically a worthless degree where a MS is required to do anything remotely significant. Shortly after graduating I realized I had no job prospects and zero desire to work in the field. I enjoyed my time at the University and liked what I was learning but it was more of a hobby than something I wanted to do for a living. One year later I took the basic engineering classes at Jr. Co, which were easy (it was Jr. Co) and I'm now starting to get my BS in ME at a local University (I have 4 semesters left). The problem is the more I look around the more I get worried that I'm going to be a CAD jockey, something I don't want to do. I guess I'm just nervous that I won't like this field either. I know I want to do something technical and more math involved, I skimmed that thread on CFD and that sounded interesting.

    I guess I'm just wondering if any ME's can give me some insight into what they do on a day to day basis and will there be opportunities to do more technical work? Or should I find a way to switch to applied math or statistics?

    For reference, I do wish to pursue a MS somewhere along the line. Any insight will be much appreciated.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 12, 2012 #2


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    Hey RugbyEng and welcome to the forums.

    If your book is the one by Viktor Frankl, it is a great book and I think you'll enjoy it.

    I'll be graduating this year with a math degree (one major in statistics) just so you know where I am coming from.

    With statistics if you end up doing work in the capacity of a "statistician", your job will usually consist of helping someone answer a question of some sort. The sort of question depends on the type of statistician that you are. If you are a general consulting statistician (like for example at a university), then there is going to be a lot of variation. If its in biostatistics, it's going to be things like "does this drug really statistically do what its intended to do?" or "can you design this experiment or trial given this budget?".

    You'll usually be working on the different parts of the lifecycle of a project of some sort. Also it would be helpful to do some public speaking, speech writing, and presentations: even if the focus is not on math or technical subjects since a good part of an analytic hand whether it be an engineer, statistician, or applied mathematician, is to convert math and scientific results into a language that other people can comprehend and appreciate.
  4. Jan 12, 2012 #3
    Thanks for the heads up on the statics field. Also, that is indeed the book I will be reading soon. I guess I feel like I'm constantly flip-flopping on what I really want to pursue. I suppose I'm looking for some MechE's to give me a heads up. Whenever I see an entry level ME job it always asks for CAD experience, which I'm not interested in. I want to make sure there is more to being a MechE than CAD. I'll try googling some more for articles on the topic.
  5. Jan 13, 2012 #4
    The more I think about it, the more I wonder if I could get into a masters program after this semester. Would it be worthwhile to take the GRE and linear algebra this summer and pursue a Masters in Applied Mathematics? Would I be able to get in with a random BS, the calcs, linear Alg, Diff EQ, and some other physics/engineering courses?

    Does anyone have experience with second degrees etc.?
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