5 Strategies You Can Use to Select the Right Engineering Major - Geneva College, a Christian College in Pennsylvania (PA)

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Program Spotlight
December 29, 2021

5 Strategies You Can Use to Select the Right Engineering Major

An engineering major is an interdisciplinary study of science and math along with a few business principles and strategies. General engineering coursework teaches students how to:

  • Identify and find a solution to problems
  • Understand ethical and professional responsibilities
  • Design and conduct experiments
  • Communicate effectively

 

As an engineer, you must adopt a career-long commitment to learning. There will always be new products and developments, new problem-solving methods or techniques, and new technologies that benefit career advancement.

Engineering is the “E” in the term STEM. (Science, Technology, and Math round out the rest of the acronym.) All of these fields share an emphasis on innovation, critical thinking skills, and problem-solving. If you have strong skills in these areas, engineering is a great career path to consider, but you’ll still need to choose a major. If you are undecided on which engineering concentration is right for you, let’s take a look at how you can determine which is right for you.

  1. Speak to an Engineering Professional

With so many concentrations to choose from, it can be difficult to narrow your choice down to just one or two. You may have an easier time if you talk to someone who is already in the field. After all, who knows more about engineering than, well, an engineer. Perhaps someone in your circle of friends and family is an engineering professional. They could be the ideal candidate to field your questions. If not, maybe a friend or family member works at a company that employs engineers. You could also contact a professional engineering society or local employers to arrange to interview one of their professionals.

One of the local college or university engineering professors can also answer your questions. Ideally, you want to talk to a professor at the college you plan to attend, but that’s not essential. College professors are accustomed to answering students’ questions, so don’t hesitate to reach out, make an appointment, and ask them any questions you might have.

  1. Do Research

You’ll need to decide early on which engineering concentration you want to pursue. It’s possible to switch but doing so may mean you’ll need to take additional classes which will delay your graduation date. Begin researching different types of engineering concentrations to avoid this potential problem.

Make a list of the types of engineering concentrations you are most interested in or have an aptitude towards. Then go online and do some research to see if those concentrations are a good fit for you.

Here are a few resources to get you started:

As you read through the information in the above links, you may be introduced to engineering fields you didn’t even know existed.

As part of your research, look at:

  • Classes different majors are required to take
  • Skills they’re required to learn
  • Average salaries
  • Type of jobs the various concentrations enable them to pursue

Armed with this information, you’ll be better able to determine if a particular concentration lines up with your career goals and personal interests.

  1. Find Jobs That Align with the Concentrations You’re Interested In

You’ll spend a great portion of your life working. Therefore, finding the right engineering concentration – one that you’ll genuinely enjoy that allows you to accomplish all that God intends - is essential. Often, your interests will lead you to choose a career that enables you to pursue God’s purpose for your life.

For this reason, many individuals gravitate towards one engineering niche over another, although there is a bit of overlap in the skills required for many types of engineering degrees. Maybe you want to improve people’s lives and are interested in the safety, design and manufacture of prosthetics. Or perhaps you’re passionate about designing and building robotics. Or maybe you’re concerned about the health of our planet and want to make it a safer place to live. Various interests and engineering concentrations correlate to different engineering majors.

  1. Review the Classes You Will Need to Take for Each Concentration

If you know the school or schools you intend to attend, get a course catalog and look at the syllabus of the various engineering concentrations that interest you. Can you see yourself enjoying the classes and taking pleasure in learning the skills necessary to pursue a career in a certain engineering concentration?

Consider the required electives and courses. Read the course blurbs. Next, imagine taking the required coursework. Do you picture yourself gaining the knowledge and enjoying the process of learning it?

You can also spend some time in the university bookstore perusing the textbooks you would use in some classes you might take.

  1. Speak to Your Advisor

Setting up a meeting to speak with your academic advisor is one of the most important steps you can make when choosing a major. An advisor can provide insight and wisdom that can help you determine which engineering concentration is right for you.

Come to your meeting with a list of the questions you want to ask the academic advisor. They may have limited time to spend with you and this will help make the most of it.

Pursuing an Engineering Degree at Geneva

Choosing the right engineering concentration can be scary. You want to make sure you make the right decision. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be so scary. If you’re undecided on a major, these steps will help determine which concentration is right for you. And, if you change your mind later for whatever reason, many classes within engineering concentrations overlap. Therefore, completed coursework may still apply towards the new engineering concentration.

Geneva is only one of fifteen Council for Christian Colleges and Universities in the nation that offers ABET-accredited engineering programs. Providing students with an academic edge and a competitive career, Geneva may be the best engineering school in Pennsylvania with benefits like these:

  • Programs where students work with governmental and industrial organizations
  • Participation in national competitions
  • A fantastic record of job placements for our graduates

 

We offer many concentrations covering a broad range of interests. For more information on how Geneva College can help you pursue your career goals, contact us at 855-979-5563 or web@geneva.edu.



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