Do You Have What It Takes To Be An Engineer?

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Chemical, civil, agricultural, industrial, electrical, mechanical, environmental, nuclear, mining, software, ocean and systems engineering.


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Chemical, civil, agricultural, industrial, electrical, mechanical, environmental, nuclear, mining, software, ocean and systems engineering. If you’re wanting to be an engineer, you have plenty options when it comes to what kind of industry you want to work in. But when it comes down to it, there are certain qualities expected and associated with engineers in general.

And you need to decide whether you have what it takes to be an engineer.

Qualified

To be an engineer, you’re required to be qualified in the departments of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. If those subjects don’t sound pleasing or at least interesting, then you probably shouldn’t strive to be an engineer.

And going about your qualifications should not be taken lightly. You’re building your skills and preparing your mind to work in industries that are crucial to society and have a direct impact on the workings of everyday life. There’s a lot of responsibility that accompanies the title of “engineer” and you need to be able to handle that responsibility.  

Quantitative

It’s no surprise that an engineer’s thought processes need to be quantitative (especially with those kinds of subjects). And if you already have a knack for quantitative thinking, then when it comes to problem-solving, systems thinking, investigation, interpreting data and working off evidence, you won’t have too hard of a time.

Resourceful

Engineers are extremely resourceful and are able to logically use materials that are available to them and distinguish which paths to take based on product qualities, environmental factors and time constraints.

They are able to adapt to different situations and make an informed decision on how to proceed and don’t have passive reactions to problems. And it doesn’t stop at “in the moment” circumstances. Being an engineer means you are proactive in designing and building with the future and all destructible possibilities in mind.    

Creative

Being resourceful requires an engineer to be creative when it comes to thinking outside of the box and being able to apply theoretical scenarios to the real-world. Without engineers and creative minds, we probably wouldn’t have half the tools, machines and technology in the world today.

Engineers have the ability to use both sides of their brain to analyse and dissect a need, decide how the need needs to be met, as well as design and create the tools necessary to do the job. Engineering is all about innovation and creating new ways of doing, well, pretty much everything if it means sustainability, safety and long-term prosperity.

Technical

Being technical is as much of a personality trait as it is a necessary quality for an engineer. It follows having a qualitative mindset and being able to critically analyse and interpret data to come to a solution.

You need to be detail oriented. As an engineer you may be responsible for the food we eat, the buildings we work in, the water systems we rely on, the software we use to run our businesses, the quality of the air we breathe, the power we need in our homes and ensuring the efficiency of everyday tools. Obviously, depending on which branch of engineering you specialise in, your responsibilities will be different.

The point being, if you can’t focus on the details and be stubbornly technical, you’re risking lives and the workings of society.

Always learning

Your studying doesn’t end when you receive your degree and qualifications. As an engineer, you will always be learning because the world, its technology and its “needs” will always be changing. Make sure you stay up-to-date with the latest industry news (if you’re not headlining the news yourself) and get as much experience as you can.

When you’re just starting out, try to get as much apprenticeship, mentorship and general experience as you can and work your way up. 

Great communicator

And, last but not least, you need to be a great communicator if you want to be an engineer. Your efforts are essentially communicating to society that there is a problem and this is the solution. In addition to this, you need to be able to communicate with a team and clients. If you can’t communicate and listen to the problem at hand, you’re not going to be able to effectively come up with a solution.

So, now that you know whether you have what it takes, what kind of engineer do you want to be?

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