Contemplating an Electrical Engineering degree

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by M1A Shooter, Jan 4, 2010.

  1. M1A Shooter

    M1A Shooter

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    i have been contemplating a BS in Electrical Engineering. this would put me further than any of the other men in my family who currently work for various utility companies but im not 100% certain i want to keep working for the same company my dad and uncle work for and my grandpa retired from.

    what else would be possible with an electrical engineering degree? working for a utility company or not?
     
  2. Mwildt

    Mwildt

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    Have several friends that are EE or ME. Some work for engineering firms that mainly deal with government contracts, everything from buildings to various aircraft frames. Have a few that work for GE as well ranging from their appliance division to aircraft engines.
     

  3. mymini40

    mymini40

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    Good choice.Go for it.
     
  4. Atlas

    Atlas transmogrifier

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    There are many, many opportunities in electrical engineering with a very wide range of working environments and situations.

    If you choose to pursue this you may find your direction while still in school.
    Or, you may need to do some research to learn something of the many areas where EEs work.



    Some general areas:
    --------------------------
    Power generation and distribution
    Power control systems
    Electronic components design
    Embedded systems design and semiconductors
    Automation engineering
    Marine systems design
    Medical electronics
    Military and weapons systems
    Aerospace and avionics
    Communications
    Computer hardware
    Radar
    Automotive electronics

    etc.
    etc.
    etc.
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2010
  5. TurboRocket

    TurboRocket

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    My brother has undergrad and grad degree in EE. Worked on a team that helped design avionics for the F-22 Raptor, and now designs 'double-secret probation' encrypted cell phones for alphabet agencies. My cousin also has two degrees in EE - he worked for well known defense contractor on NASA projects (Space Shuttle, IIRC), and did something with operations at a large CPU manufacturer. There's a lot to do with EE degrees beyond utilities.
     
  6. cranejc

    cranejc

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    my wife's uncle has a BS in EE and he's been a VP at TVA for quite some time and just a little over 40 years of age.
     
  7. doktarZues

    doktarZues I'm anti-anti

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    Definitely a lot of opportunities outside of utility companies. EE is one of the most diverse degrees you can get that will always be in demand. They may be able to mass produce cheaper overseas but a whole lot of stuff is designed over here.
     
  8. MooseJaw

    MooseJaw NRA Lifer CLM

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    Go for the Degree.

    Then decide which area you want:

    Power (Utility Comapany)

    Manufacturing (GE; Siemens; Cutler Hammer; etc.)

    Building Systems (customer side of distribuition; <480 volt power; lighting, etc.)

    Electronics..
     
  9. dherloc

    dherloc X-Nuc

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    Hmmm...I think you would be better off billing the utility as a contractor than working for them directly.
     
  10. RioKid

    RioKid

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    One of my sons is an EE and designs, builds and programs electronic circuitry. He has been doing this for 20+ years and loves it.:wavey:
     
  11. Atlas

    Atlas transmogrifier

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    My advice would be to give it very careful consideration.
    You need to be seriously focused and motivated before pursuing an EE degree.
    In some schools they refer to the EE program as "pre-business".
     
  12. M1A Shooter

    M1A Shooter

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    i am definately focused and ready to get back into school. i finally got out of the military after 10 years and its time to do something different. ive been a MP for my military career and am now working as a general contractor rehabing condos in the area. i am finally ready to get back into school and really want to be prepared to provide for my family better than just getting by.

    with the economy being slow like it is, right now is a great time to be in school so when this starts to recover, ill be in a good position to better my situation. if it doesnt recover, then i still need to be into something serious that still has some serious demand. i figured with the current direction into alternative power sources, EE would be a good in. with some of the recommendations above and my military background, maybe designing systems for future warfighters would be great as well.
     
  13. Rabbi

    Rabbi The Bombdiggity Lifetime Member

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    It is a very good choice. In general you can enjoy a life of well above average income doing interesting things with a good level of options
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2010
  14. janice6

    janice6 Silver Member

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    My son has a degree in engineering and one in computer science. He has worked in physics research and has found that he preferred computer science and software instead.

    My experience was that an EE degree also means mathematics type applications.

    As said here, there are many applications for an EE other then Power engineering.

    My BIL was a Nuclear Power Engineer (with a EE) before he retired. He contracts with his former employer as a Federal requirements consultant for the Nuke plant.
     
  15. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

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    What kind of EE? Power type that work on power generation and transmission (electricity)? Or the fancy solid state microprocessor/laser type?

    If you're going for the power EE type, you can work for a utility company, work for a design engineering firm that design power plants or power delivery system, you can work as a field engineer for a general contractor type, you can work for manufacturers of power transmission/generation equipment and be their field expert.
     
  16. skyugo

    skyugo

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    good EE's are hard to find.
    it's not an easy subject, the math is intense.

    america needs more good engineers. go for it. :cool:
     
  17. 23skidoo

    23skidoo Deceased

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    The cable industry employs a lot of EE's.
     
  18. Haldor

    Haldor Formerly retired EE.

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    Electrical Engineering. Good general degree to get especially if interested in power or RF (wireless) or really don't know what you want to do with your career. This is definitely the way to go if you plan on getting your PE (professional engineer license).

    Electronics Engineering. Good if you are interested in designing consumer or industrial product. Just about everything that uses electricity is computer controlled now so electronics engineers tend to have decent job prospects.

    Computer Electronics Engineering. This is a relatively new degree program that is pretty popular. This combines an electronics engineering degree with a minor in computer science (programming). This wasn't around when I got my degree, but I ended up coming close to this with my tech electives.

    If you have an idea what kind of work you are interested in doing, your tech electives are a good way to tailor your degree to make you ready for that field of work. I was interested in embedded design, so most of my tech electives where aimed at circuit design and microprocessors. I do wish I had taken more RF classes now, because I find myself interested (and involved) in EMC/EMI compliance issues more than I anticipated.

    Never lose sight of the fact that ALL ELECTRONICS are analog and there is no such thing as a digital circuit. Do not shirk your analog design classes or you will never be able to design high speed digital circuits. Plus anybody who designs electronic devices needs antenna theory (if only so they will know how to avoid creating inadvertent antennas in their products).

    I would also check into intern opportunities. Many universities have an intern program where you spend chunks of time working for companies as an apprentice engineer. This gives you a way to earn some money for school and is a great way to find out if you hate what you are training for before you complete your degree (while you still have time to change directions). Plus any work experience in your field puts you ahead of other new grads when looking for your first permanent job. If you are worth anything you will often get a job offer from the company you interned at.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2010
  19. Haldor

    Haldor Formerly retired EE.

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    It has been good for me. One advantage is that at least so far, the design jobs have tended to stay in the USA even while the manufacturing jobs leave. I realize this is not guaranteed, but that has been my experience.

    I hope to get into teaching as I get closer to retirement. I can't imagine anything more fun than spending a lot of time with young, enthusiastic, engineering students. Engineers tend to make excellent students. Nerdy enough to get excited about the subject matter and interested in more than binge drinking and chasing tail.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2010