Career choice

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Introduction

The first step in making a career choice is to think carefully about what really drives us. However in this current economy crisis we also must ask such questions as "what pays the most?" or "what is most secure?" Nevertheless, it's important to first discover your primary interests and passions which can open doors to careers that you might not have considered. Once you have that foundation, you can start fine tuning your search to the right career. You may be surprised at how you can fit your passions into a certain career. Searching for information online can help you figure out the practical priorities: How stable is the field you are considering? Are you comfortable with the amount of risk? Is the salary range acceptable to you? What about commute distances? Will you have to relocate for training or a new job? And will the new job affect your family?

  • Careers-US News and World Report- Provides updated information on good careers based on future outlooks and job satisfaction, as well as future trends and jobs that may be overrated
  • Careers-US News and World Report- Provides updated information on good careers based on future outlooks and job satisfaction, as well as future trends and jobs that may be overrated
  • Career Guide to Industries - Provides information on careers available by industry groupings. Also gives outlook on industry, overall earnings and training information

You decided on two occupations in the engineering profession, biomedical and mechanical engineering technology. But firstly, the engineering profession as a whole entails several principles.

Engineering Profession

Engineers apply the principles of science and mathematics to develop economical solutions to technical problems. Their work is the link between scientific discoveries and the commercial applications that meet societal and consumer needs. Many engineers have and are still developing new products in which they consider several factors. These engineers supervise production in factories, determine the causes of component failure, and test manufactured products to maintain quality. They also estimate the time and cost to complete projects. Supervisory engineers are responsible for major components or entire projects. These engineers use computers extensively to produce and analyze designs; to simulate and test how a machine, structure, or system operates; to generate specifications for parts; and to monitor product quality and control process efficiency. Nanotechnology, which involves the creation of high-performance materials and components by integrating atoms and molecules, also is introducing entirely new principles to the design process.

Biomedical Engineers

By definition, Biomedical Engineers, develop devices and procedures that solve medical and health-related problems by combining their knowledge of biology and medicine with engineering principles and practices. Among these engineers many do research, along with life scientists, chemists, and medical scientists, to develop and evaluate systems and products such as artificial organs, prostheses (artificial devices that replace missing body parts), instrumentation, medical information systems, and health management and care delivery systems. Biomedical engineers are also trained and have the ability to design devices used in various medical procedures, imaging systems such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and devices for automating insulin injections or controlling body functions. Due to the vital importance of theses machines engineers in this specialty need a sound background in another engineering specialty, such as mechanical or electronics engineering, in addition to specialized biomedical training. Some specialties within biomedical engineering include biomaterials, biomechanics, medical imaging, rehabilitation engineering, and orthopedic engineering.

Mechanical Engineers

Mechanical Engineers researches, designs, develops, manufactures, and test tools, engines, machines, and other mechanical devices. Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines and can work on various power-producing machines such as electric generators, internal combustion engines, and steam and gas turbines. They also work on power-using machines such as refrigeration and air-conditioning equipment, machine tools, material handling systems, elevators and escalators, industrial production equipment, and robots used in manufacturing. Mechanical engineers also design tools that other engineers need for their work. In addition, mechanical engineers work in manufacturing or agriculture production, maintenance, or technical sales; many become administrators or managers.

TRAININGS AND QUALIFICATIONS

A bachelor's degree in engineering is required for almost all entry-level engineering jobs. College graduates with a degree in a natural science or mathematics occasionally may qualify for some engineering jobs, especially in specialties in high demand. Most engineering degrees are granted in electrical, electronics, mechanical, or civil engineering. However, engineers trained in one branch may work in related branches. For example, many aerospace engineers have training in mechanical engineering. This flexibility allows employers to meet staffing needs in new technologies and specialties in which engineers may be in short supply. It also allows engineers to shift to fields with better employment prospects or to those that more closely match their interests.According to research, most engineering programs involve a concentration of study in an engineering specialty, along with courses in both mathematics and the physical and life sciences. Many programs also include courses in general engineering. A design course, sometimes accompanied by a computer or laboratory class or both, is part of the curriculum of most programs. General courses not directly related to engineering, such as those in the social sciences or humanities, are also often required. In addition to the standard engineering degree, many colleges offer 2-year or 4-year degree programs in engineering technology. These programs, which usually include various hands-on laboratory classes that focus on current issues in the application of engineering principles, prepare students for practical design and production work, rather than for jobs that require more theoretical and scientific knowledge. Graduates of 4-year technology programs may get jobs similar to those obtained by graduates with a bachelor's degree in engineering. Engineering technology graduates, however, are not qualified to register as professional engineers under the same terms as graduates with degrees in engineering. Some employers regard technology program graduates as having skills between those of a technician and an engineer. Continuing education or training in engineering is looked upon as a must have in many companies. Many engineers who already have experience try to obtain other degrees in business administration in order to broaden their minds on new education and to grasp a better knowledge of the new and changing technology. According to the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) Inc., about 1,830 programs at colleges and universities offer bachelor's degrees in engineering and there are another 710 accredited programs in engineering technology. The ABET accreditation is based on a program's faculty, curriculum, and facilities; the achievement of a program's students; program improvements; and institutional commitment to specific principles of quality and ethics. Indeed, many institutions offer many programs that incorporate the major elements for the major branches of engineering. However, there are only a select few programs that offer the necessary programs for the smaller specialties. For example, there are certain opportunities that emphasize industrial practices, preparing students for a job in industry, compared to others that are focused on a more theoretical and are designed solely to prepare students for graduate work

SALARY

The salary you could possibly expect to receive in these careers is within the following ranges. The wages of biomedical engineers vary somewhat between geographical areas and kind of employer. Recent surveys for both the public and private sectors indicate that wages are at the $6,160 monthly range. Experienced engineers have a monthly range of $9,694 and higher.Mechanical engineers earn from an average of $5,820 on a monthly range and an experienced engineer $8,741 and higher.

WORKING CONDITIONS

Biomedical engineering technologists who work in health care facilities may be required to work rotating shifts that include weekends and holidays, or be on call for emergencies. They may be exposed to diseases and must wear protective clothing such as rubber gloves and masks in some environments. Working in emergency situations can be stressful. Doing considerably amount of travelling may be required. Lifting of equipments is also required.Mechanical engineers may work in office, laboratory, shop or field environments. Field work is required to review site conditions and inspect the construction of designs. Mechanical engineers also may work in research and development laboratories, or the production departments of factories where they supervise the testing and manufacture of products. Although some engineers spend most of their time in an office, many jobs require working part of the time in a plant, testing laboratory, machine shop, or installation site. Engineering is normally not a physically strenuous job. However, the pressure of deadlines or the need for emergency repairs can cause considerable stress.

EMPLOYMENT

According to the stats biomedical engineers are expected to have 21 percent employment growth over the decade, this is much more than any other engineering field. The aging of the population and the focus on health issues will drive demand for better medical devices and equipment designed by biomedical engineers.The employment outlook for mechanical engineers has a 4 percent employment growth over the decade, slow increase for this occupation compared to others. This is because total employment in manufacturing industries-in which employment of mechanical engineers is concentrated-is expected to decline. Some new job opportunities will be created due to emerging technologies in biotechnology, materials science, and nanotechnology.

Conclusion

You have always been told to pick a career, in which you love, hope to grow and to become very successful. In order to succeed in such a prosperous career field as engineering an increase interest in learning must be fulfilled. Overall, both biomedical and mechanical engineering profession do show a promising future, however gearing towards the medical field proves to be advisable.

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