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Schools Mechanical Engineering Advice

  1. Jun 22, 2016 #1
    I have a friend and she is very troubled. She is studying mechanical engineering in Turkey's top 10 to 15th university.
    She wants to change her school but she needs to study for the university exams again which steals one year of her life.
    She believes that graduating from her school will kill her admission chances for top gradschools. (Top 30-50 in US) She also doesn't like the envoirment in her school she says that noone cares about engineering they are all here to graduate and get a job.
    She finished her first year with a 3.2 GPA (she didn't study or care she is depressed she didn't do well in university exams last year)
    I am trying to convince her that with a fine GPA and GRE score and undergrad research she can do very well.
    What should she do and what are research opportunities for an undergraduate student outside of school she needs some advice from relevant people to her my words doesn't mean a thing.
    Also she feels like she can fail in university exams again, which will destroy her.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 23, 2016 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    This is a tough question to give advice for. Personally I think the best advice is to get out from under the pressure of going to a school you don't like that is feeding her depression. However her depression may be from many other issues not described here.

    Certainly many students suffer from the fear of graduation where they now have to get a job and not knowing how to do it other than firing off resumes and job apps in a shotgun manner or not knowing what they even know, and basically not knowing the way the life game is played or even whether they want to play it by the rules.

    In any event in this circumstance, I would advise her to stay in school and continue her education. Dropping out to study for exams to get into another school is a riskier proposition. Its like climbing a mountain, you graduate from highschool, select a college and start your climb. From there your options are limited until you graduate then things open up. If you decide to drop out for whatever reason you have no degree to use to get a job. You can argue that you've taken these courses but you have no degree and that's what companies or grad schools look for. The degree shows your skill level and shows a company that you can learn new things and have a proven track record. If you drop out to study and then lose motivation (can't see the light at the end of the tunnel its a light-year away) or you don't get into the new school then you are stuck again without a degree and limited options and less money to pursue your dreams.

    Motivation at her current school, should be to understand the courses she is studying to the best of her ability. She needs to have a curiosity about her work. She needs to ask herself what can she use these newly acquired skills for, what can she do with what she knows and like playing a computer game amassing more skills like programming, hardware knowledge... practical experience working as a lab assistant... for her character.

    She needs to forget about what other students attitudes are. These attitudes have nothing to do with how she will succeed in this environment. Sometimes students play this game of one-ups-manship bragging putting down other students. Women students don't respond well to this and sometimes get intimidated by it. I've had to counsel several female students in software engineering to ignore the claims of the super hacker male students because it was probably just BS and the real endgame is getting good grades not showing off your programming skills. Its like in martial arts where the serious student will not show their techniques to outsiders because they know its a life and death skill and to show someone means you are giving up a weakness that can be exploited.

    To summarize, she should stay in school, focus on graduating, develop a curiosity about the things she is learning and how she could use the skills and acquire new ones with the goal of graduating and preparing for job or graduate school (also a kind of job) and at the same time prepping for the GRE and what it takes to get into graduate school. She should also start constructing a resume in the eventuality of getting a job. I have more advice on that if needed.

    -- Jedi
  4. Jun 26, 2016 #3
    Thanks a lot she is very happy with your post. She is trying to focus on her work.
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