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Not sure what type of job to look for. ME degree with Aerospace exp

  • #1
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Main Question or Discussion Point

Hi all,

I graduated college from a state school with a degree in Mechanical Engineering in May 2011 and started my job at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center shortly after. I worked as a flight ops controller for a relatively high-profile (but old) earth science mission, then in June of this year I moved up a position to become a command & data handling subsystem specialist for the same mission which I was a flight ops controller.

I'm unhappy in my current position for several reasons:
1. The job is severely unsatisfying. It's difficult to do work because there is not enough work to be done. I consider myself a motivated employee, but I spend more time trying to find work to do than actually doing it. Most of my time is spent reading spacecraft technical documentation just because I have nothing better to do.

2. The job is far away from my girlfriend, family, and friends. I moved 2.5 hours away for this job because I thought it'd be the best career option. I was looking for something new, but now I realized that I'd rather be in the south NJ/Philly area.

3. The area where I'm located now is extremely expensive. I'm making about $60k, but because of the high cost of living it doesn't seem like much.

I just can't decide on what type of job I'd like to start looking for. I want a job where I actually have work to do. I'm not really sure what types of jobs are even out there. I know about the mainstream industries: manufacturing, design, consulting, etc. But that doesn't really help me narrow down to companies. The only reason I found the job I have now is because of a college friend. I would have never thought of applying to NASA otherwise.

So far this is a list of places I'll be sending my resume: Applied Physics Lab (Baltimore, MD), Lockheed Martin (Mount Laurel, NJ), and Boeing (NJ or PA location).

So other than general comments, my questions are...
1. Does anyone have any recommendations on jobs to apply for? Either specific jobs or general career paths
2. Should I be applying as an experienced professional or college graduate? I only have about 2 years of job experience, and it will only be moderately related.
3. Should I wait a bit before applying for jobs? I'm pretty unhappy with my current situation, but I also don't want to hurt my chances of being successful because I didn't show company loyalty.

Thanks!
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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Some colleges post lists of where their graduates go to work. Do a Google search for those. "Where our graduates/students went to work" or something. There are a lot of companies I didn't even hear of before that I've found! :)
 

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