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Engineering Recent BSc in Physics graduate, worried about my new job

  1. Sep 19, 2017 #21
    Thank you for the response, I am going to be a process technician. I initially applied for process engineer but have not heard back on that end. Essentially as a physics graduate I feel like I have the necessary educational background but lack the engineering experience, which was the main reason I was okay accepting a process tech II position(which I heard is a good starting position compared to a maintenance tech.) I will be working in a 300mm fab and I actually will be using KLA instruments oddly enough. I am excited to start but my eyes are becoming a process engineer ASAP and progressing from there.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2017
  2. Sep 20, 2017 #22
    Right on. A process tech is a fun position from what I have seen. You get to work shift and get overtime usually which is sweet.

    I hope you get an opportunity to move into engineering soon as you expect. Im a little skeptical of that though. By promoting you they create a vacancy in their techs and have two employees to train. If they hire an outsider for engineer they have no vacancy to fill and only one to train. In my limited experience raises and promotions dont happen very often. I suspect the way for you to get promoted is to jump ship after a year or two.

    That is what I did after my first fab job. I was clearly over qualified, kicked ass and saw that I wouldnt get a decent raise or promotion any time soon. So I found another job that paid ~25% more and delt with more cutting edge technology and quit my first job after a year and a half. Now I am in a similar position again. Bored with how easy my job is, no opportunity for advancement. Im looking for something better but am fundamentally limited by not having a PhD. This might be the end of the road for me.
  3. Sep 20, 2017 #23
    I've read jumping ship no later than 2 years is advisable if you have not been promoted to engineer, which I plan to if need be. Have you thought about obtaining a PhD?
  4. Sep 20, 2017 #24
    Yea I tried, but Im not smart enough to get a PhD. My local 300mm fab requires a PhD just to be a process engineer. They also require that you be a recent grad. A lab mate of mine post doced for over two years, no longer a recent grad, no longer able to be a process engineer.

    Anyway, I agree with 2 years. If you dont get what you want by then, look elsewhere.
  5. Sep 20, 2017 #25
    Wow, a PhD for a process engineer. I might have been generally underestimating that position due to some alumni from my school getting that position fresh out of BSc. That sounds intense and unfortunate about your lab mate. Have you worked as a process tech? I know you had mentioned photolithography. If so, what was your day to day life like at work?
  6. Sep 20, 2017 #26


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    A PhD just to work as a process engineer!? I find that hard to believe!

    What kind of PhD is required? In all of the engineering positions required that I'm aware (in almost any industry), an engineering BS degree (whether it be electrical, mechanical, etc.) was usually all that was required, maybe a MS at most.
  7. Sep 20, 2017 #27
    I believe it is a requirement unique to my local fab. Its an intense position because of the time requirements and responsibility. They dont really do much science or research. They have a responsibility over a couple tools in their process. They have to be on call fairly regularly where they have to be within 30 mins drive from the fab in case a tool goes down. Other process engineering jobs arnt like that. They hire only PhDs since they have the money, the wafers are very expensive and graduates are plentiful.

    I was a process engineer at an older 200mm fab. It was easy as ****. Basically I had to keep specifications within control limits by turning knobs like dose and tweaking recipes. We have to hunt down causes of defects in collaboration with other groups. Also we have to inspect lots that go on hold due to process interuptions and irregularities. Of course lots of emails and meetings...

    Now I work for a vendor assigned to a 300mm fab. Its better pay and hours, and a little more intellectual.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2017
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