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Salary concerns for Engineers (Degree Level Matter ?)

  • Engineering
  • Thread starter VoloD
  • Start date
  • #26
1,823
190
Yes, but if you did it right, it would be a fair and informed one.
 
  • #27
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I know its been awhile seen Ive been on. I read the comments. Lorcrian, I am better understanding what your point is. Factoring in opportunity cost of possible income gained for working 2 years (assuming your work during the 2 years is actually engineering, and/or pays relatively approximate to a national averages), The base salary is probably close for a BS vs an MS. In the long run, the salary's reach a peak based on pure experience as others have said and I myself find the logic in that.

However, in an equal grounds contest (where experience is non-existent or equatable) a base MS in engineering usually can make in base salary. Provided there are many exceptions (such as the type of work and time spent working) but I think thats a fair way to access all of this

Quantum also made a valid point that has previously concerned me, but that only means I need to careful when applying for positions related to my field. (or possibly market myself better). To be honest, since only the better students typically get Masters degrees I assume they usually work in different capacities. At the end of the day it does not matter how "difficult" the BS program is, since the base knowledge is the same , the reward will typically be the same until your own job experiences makes the difference.

I appreciate the comments. And I feel that I have an answer to my inquiry and a sense of resolve about my personal endeavors. Unless there is more for anyone to say,
 
  • #28
43
1
And speaking of money. If your goal is to be rich or at least financially comfortable, then you should be focused on saving and investing rather than earning a high salary on paper.
THAT is the most true thing! Save obsessively…well, not obsessively, enjoy life. But count how many months you could go if you got fired tomorrow-the more months, the merrier.

A friend quit one day and moved to France for a year because she felt like it. This was enabled by her yes high salary, but really because she didn't care about cars and drove an old one, had a modest apartment (which she shared to boot), and simply didn't spend wildly. She didn't HAVE to show off-her friends knew she had a bunch of money in the bank!

Also, stuff every penny into IRA/401k etc especially while young. Working a summer job while in school? CONTRIBUTE! Money stuffed away when young has longer to grow.

And yes, if you want to be REALLY wealthy better go into law or medicine or finance or start a business. You can do nicely on an engineer's salary, but in big cities you will NOT get rich from that.
 
  • #29
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In the field of civil engineering, there are a large percentage of engineers who start out with a BS and get their advanced degrees while they are earning an income.
 
  • #30
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I am not sure if this would deem another thread but I wanted to ask if school and/or degree level (BS, MS,PhD) has meaningful bearing on starting salary with electrical engineering. I know that there are people who can make 100k with BS and people who make 50k with MS. However there is a difference between possibility and probability. I am basically asking how salary correlates with degree level in the most practical sense for engineering careers.
There are several factors that determine a starting salary: The degree you choose (ChemE is currently ranked at the top), the school you graduate from, your school record and whether you have any internship experience.

A MS will be paid slightly more than a BS. But consider the fact that you have deferred an income for two years, and two years of practical experience, and raises. It is not a good investment and only makes sense if you are interested in advanced training in a particular topic. If you are a good student, a professor may encourage advanced education, but keep in mind that it is in his self interest.
 
  • #31
17
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THAT is the most true thing! Save obsessively…well, not obsessively, enjoy life. But count how many months you could go if you got fired tomorrow-the more months, the merrier.

A friend quit one day and moved to France for a year because she felt like it. This was enabled by her yes high salary, but really because she didn't care about cars and drove an old one, had a modest apartment (which she shared to boot), and simply didn't spend wildly. She didn't HAVE to show off-her friends knew she had a bunch of money in the bank!

Also, stuff every penny into IRA/401k etc especially while young. Working a summer job while in school? CONTRIBUTE! Money stuffed away when young has longer to grow.

And yes, if you want to be REALLY wealthy better go into law or medicine or finance or start a business. You can do nicely on an engineer's salary, but in big cities you will NOT get rich from that.
If you want to be really wealthy, DO NOT go into law or medicine. Finance? maybe. Start your own business? Doing what? Most successful business that I am directly familiar with were started by an engineer.
 
  • #32
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0
I am not motivated to discuss the original post because as it has been well explained by several posts it’s a rather vain venture to make much lucidity out of the topic. I am inclined to subscribe most of the exposition presented by Almeisan.
I would have liked to mildly revise or elaborate on some of the statements
What matters most is PRACTICE, not education
while strongly endorse the idea
Engineering is a very practical field. What matters most is PRACTICE.
I believe that education does matter as much as practice. However, it is mostly what engineers have gained and assimilated from education for practical purposes of engineering that matter. It is the application of the benefits of education appropriately for varying environments and circumstances I refer to. On the one hand some aspects of education may be directly transferable to the needs of the job, and on the other hand one has to embrace what one has learned from education to best suit the situation. Further, education comprises what we learn in the universities and colleges as well as what we learn eternally at work, and from in-house and external training programmes, journalistic and seminar spheres, and also from life experiences.
 
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  • #33
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A caveat is that education from work and life experience needs to be corroborated with education from school or other credible sources. Perception and practice itself is not end-all.

With regard to the relevance of degree level, Masters is an enhancement of the B S. At doctorate level there is a conventional discipline of engineering in academics. There is also research and development where people with MS and/or BS, or even diploma can join. Salary is often commensurate with degree level and relevant experience.

There are other issues that intervene with salary or rather the suitable sector for employment for engineers with different personalities and values. Attitudes towards rules and regulations and professional ethics intervene with successful employment in different employment sectors. The engineering careers, like many other professions require to blend subject specific knowledge and skills with other decision making and managerial responsibilities that affect the fabric of the society, economy and the environment or vice-versa. Ability to conform to the law and make a profit is a skill advantageous in some occupational situations. ;)
 
  • #34
analogdesign
Science Advisor
1,140
354
It also depends entirely on your subfield as there is no one "Engineering".

In my field, integrated circuit design, it is difficult to get a job without an MS and a Ph.D. is very common for practicing engineers*. I know this is unusual in engineering but it is the way it is for this subfield. In my experience it is very rare to see someone designing ICs who has a BS unless he or she has been doing it for many decades. In my design group of 10 we have: 7 Ph.D., one ABD (did everything but file theis), 2 MS, and 1 BS-level engineer.

I'm throwing this out there to show WHAT you're doing matters. If you want a job as a civil engineer you probably don't want a Ph.D. If you want a job as a chip designer, a Ph.D. is probably a good idea.

*Edit: I'm talking about the design team. There are a lot of jobs for support and applications engineers who typically have BS or MS degrees, for example test engineers, firmware and software engineers, applications engineers and the like.
 

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