We can’t control time and circumstances so just show them how much you love them. Thank you a lot! I was lucky and managed to get a gov’t job w/in $6k of what I used to make. If you do not continue to learn and change over time, you become unpromotible and stagnate. ( I got the same score as you. ) I have been thinking about switching over to statistics or accounting or something with numbers and not too much science. I was already leaning towards not going to a grad school for now and I think I just needed assurance and make sure I’m aware of the consequences. I’m not the only one that thinks this way. However, that part of the major involves mostly research experiences(surface engineering), which means a graduate school diploma will be necessary. Life is short. Now I’m a human being again. Good for you I say. I worked at a place two years ago that had 6 mechanical engineering contractors. However, instead of being promoted, I fell in the trap of political fight in the corporate. As a young engineer, strive to be a sponge and learn as much as you can about your chosen technical area. You have to make the most of your life! It’s not easy. They replaced him with a corporate automaton from another company that they had bought, who knew nothing and wanted to change the entire way we had been doing projects for years. Structural-Ease works in partnership with EQ Struc Limited – a reputable structural and seismic engineering firm servicing clients nationwide and overseas. Wow, SpaceX sounds like a great place to work. Wow! In computer software, which is my area of expertise (if you want to call 12 years of experience plus 2 part-time that I left over ten years ago currently useful expertise), this is outstanding. I am essentially a communications systems embedded engineer. I obligated numerous projects and helped their HSIP thrive. If I end up in one of the many, frequent layoffs that happen in the IT world, I’m never going back. The problem is that one’s higher ups, the so-called MBA-types, have no clue and force arbitrary deadlines and do everything in their power to sideline senior engineering tech leads. It does not surprise me there are “shortages” and fewer students studying it…I did Mechanical Engineering in University and went on to work on automotive engines. When I was single and without children, I was able to be focused on tasks for hours on end and found myself attaining higher positions and salaries. Okay, this isn’t totally related, but I’ve been wanting to ask this question ever since I first came across your blog a few months ago. The ultimate goal of an engineering career should be innovation and creativity; not financial independence through a pension plan. That’s what I’ll be graduating in next year and it’s refreshing to get a wise perspective from you on priorities and how it is out there. It is a field of engineering dealing with the analysis and design of structures that support or resist loads. Then the penny pinchers came, and ticked everyone off. Stop by! You can always quit if it didn’t work out. I have the freedom to make choices for my life without being worried about pleasing my boss, or working under stress or duress, or doing a lifestyle no longer fitting for me and my wife. I’m not quite senior since I don’t feel like I’m the sharpest tool in the box. He loves the work but hates the stress. Our Youtube video has 180,000 views and counting! and need the type of income that I have grown to make. Being an entry-level engineer is a lot more fun than being a student. Right now, I’ve seen numerous licensed plumbers earning over $80K in my state and w/ OT, etc, six figures is very doable w/o spending years in school. I made a leap from engineering to interior design a few years ago. You’d have to compete with 20 something kids who don’t mind spending 80 hours on the job. Thanks for sharing your experience. What are you plans? And it permeates the entire environment, like a really smelly fart. I am a consulting engineer specializing in structural glass for buildings, and a started my own practice two years ago. It was a lot of fun and there wasn’t a lot of leadership demand. It gets my brain moving in ways that nothing else in my life can – maybe my perspective will change one day, but right now, I couldn’t see giving it up. There are issues with every company, but most people deal with it. I told my parents while they are still alive back then and they told me it’s really risky and dangerous and I said to them back then I’m ready to die fighting for my country, “WOW HOW NOBLE I AM BACK THEN” hahahaha just sharing. Any thoughts would be appreciated. At the end of the article, there are links to the one and two years update. These people are not in front of the computer 10 hours daily. I semi-retired when my net worth was minus $30,000 (due to student loans) and have been semi-retired ever since, working four hours a day or so on things I like working on. They can be a lot of work, though. I will take you up on your offer to coordinate studies, ask questions and suffer through this ordeal until WE both get this damn monkey off our … They want you to travel. I wish I had the opportunities you did, I am currently a freshman in College and am pursuing a software engineering degree. I’m sorry to hear that. Hopefully working for the gov’t will be lower stress and have better morale…just need to get through the next few tough fiscal years. Good luck! What can I say? I reached a point where I just became so apathetic it started to scare me. He said he read my resume and thought he was hiring a 12 year engineer (I was hired through a recruiting firm and the job advertised a “5+ year” candidate; I had 6 years of relevant experience in that particular area of EE). Good luck! It only took one additional year and I stood out from all the other new grads with just a BS degree. Be strong in your convictions early on and determine what kind of work-life balance you want to achieve. I wonder if possible, could you shoot me a private email since I have something to consult with you. Life is short so enjoy it! The workload was pretty crazy and young engineers routinely worked 50-60 hours per week. They agree. History. I rely just on myself (no wife, no kids, no parents or siblings) and have probably a portfolio of 200K invested in two rental units. Most companies expect senior personnel to engage in quasi-managerial activities to some extent, but Intel codifies this explicitly in upper grade level expectations at a high level (although this usually isn’t obvious to outsiders based upon published job descriptions). After 1 semester and after I have save my money. Once you know what you'd like to do, apply to a college or university with a highly ranked engineering program. I hit the ground running, put in a lotttt of hours and I actually enjoyed it because I was fresh, inexperienced and tried to learn as much as I can technically as well as management. Maybe work on a wind generator or something like that? I wasn’t sad when they laid me off and gave me a severance. Maybe you can enroll in more classes that are interesting to you. In a way, having that two way communication was a great aspect of my career. Good point about the first 10 years. Chemical engineering is applied chemistry. I´vew been in the semiconductorindustry since ´98 and can verify most of the points made here, even in an environment being not as much cutthroat as reported . Absolute mess engineering is in the USA today. Obviously management is required at some level, but the expected level is more to support a Wall st expectation of commoditization of everything. It will give you some cushion when you need to change. Beware the big house, the expensive car, spending money like it grows on trees. Wow, 30 years experience. If you are young and reading this, I wish you luck – I wouldn’t advise youth to go into tech, as this is all you will be seeing for the majority of your career, and after 14 years of it and no end in sight, I have begun to look for skills that I have gained that can help me to get out of technology and on to something that makes me happy. Maybe you should try moving to San Jose for a few months and see if you can find anything. I know that I’m now becoming a broken record on the whole health care (specifically physician assistant [PA]) vs engineering careers but here’s another factoid … do a job search and look for part-time PA jobs. I’ve seen companies in this position of having their key engineers retire and then those companies literally burn through leads and managers trying to find one. A lot of people retire early with rentals. I have been an engineer for 11 years now, have a PE stamp, and am entering this senior engineer role. It’s the stupidest way you can possibly generate income! My story is exactly the same. At least these people are in better physical shape than most engineers. I’ve worked for ten companies in the Balt./D.C. i don’t envy that. Having a degree – particularly an engineering degree – is never a bad thing. Staad Pro supports the design of almost any known structural element. This all sounds so nice and dandy but I must admit I am scared out of my brains for this big shift because of all of the time and energy I have already invested in a career thus far. My first semester in engineering school shocked me. The second company I hopped to was much smaller (instead of 5000 people, it was about 100 people). I want to give them back what they deserve to have a better life financial freedom , go travel around the world with them and that is my ambition in life. I don’t miss programming, designing, debugging, or any other engineering tasks. Once you have a good job, then you can figure out the next step. Right now, iam looking forward for more challenges and lessons to come. I still love engineering things, but I have hated actually working as an engineer for at least the past 12 years. Typically I will stick around through my second year without a pay increase, then update the resume, take a 15-20% increase with the new employer and then give my goodbyes. I think it’s best to work for small companies and shoot for the moon. Hi, you were just me and the difference is just that I was so lost in my 3rd and 4th year that I don’t even know what I wanted even until now. I don’t want to end up like this. In hindsight, I probably would’ve made a better accountant than computer engineer. Over the last 2 years work has dominated my life. Then while Im studying Engineering, something’s came up. Why is getting a job so dumb? There were other factors as well. If one doesn’t like one’s job, one should find a way to leave. , retire “to withdraw from office, business, or active life, usually because of age: to retire at the age of sixty.”, retirement “removal or withdrawal from service, office, or business.”, Keri’s perception of retirement “Obviously, you are free to call yourself whatever, but I still would not call your departure from the workforce a true “retirement” as long as you have a working spouse you rely on.”, A year late… but… yeah different strokes for different folks. I think it’s great that you can handle both the technical and leadership aspect. I know this has been a really long rant and cry for help, but please any suggestions or comments to help guide me are much appreciated. I think management jobs are better than the slaves doing engineering. He cannot quit his job right now, since I will be on maternity leave. I liked it because it was all about logic. I would rather be the mechanic and actually do something useful. 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