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Engineering Careers, Jobs and Qualifications

Which kind of engineering do you want to do – mechanical, electrical, chemical or civil engineering? Read on to find out the difference…

Engineering is vitally important to the automotive, space, aeronautical, construction and defence sectors but engineers are involved to some degree in most major industries. You can go for a career in engineering regardless of whether you enter as a school leaver via an apprenticeship scheme or as an engineering graduate.

mechanical engineering

Mechanical engineering

This is the branch of engineering which deals with machines, mechanical systems and their design, construction, manufacture and maintenance.  Jobs in this area include mechanical engineer, automotive engineer and aerospace engineer.

Chemical engineering

Chemical engineers turn raw materials into stuff we use every day, like fuel, plastics and food. If you enjoy in-depth research and solving problems, chemical engineering could be the career for you.

Studying chemical engineering could take you down a career pathway into all sorts of jobs. It plays an important part in the food industry for example, in crop growing and food production and preservation – think about ready meals, tinned foods, pre-packaged and long-life products – they all need to go through rigorous tests before they can be sold to the public.

Pharmaceutical engineering

This is vitally important in the field of medicine – think of all those pills and potions which need to be very precisely formulated and tested before they are allowed anywhere near a chemist’s shop or doctors surgery.

Food engineering

Providing solutions to food design, manufacturing and supply, food engineering fuses food science with engineering disciples.  Food engineering covers a variety of areas including mechanical engineering, manufacturing systems, process control, energy efficiency and food safety.

As a food engineer you would be part of a team who deliver innovative and high quality products globally.  Working from research and design through to packaging and transportation, food engineers apply the mechanical engineering study of structures, systems performance, and how fluids behave to safely and efficiently produce food and drink.

Electronic or electrical engineering

An electrical engineer is someone who designs, develops and tests electrical equipment. They can work with all sorts of electronic devices, from smart phones to supercomputers.

Electrical engineers can also be involved in designing telecommunications and power systems as well as utilising electricity to transmit energy. Electrical engineers can also design household appliances, lighting and wiring systems in buildings, electrical power stations and satellite communications.

Civil engineering

Civil engineers develop and improve the services and facilities we use and the infrastructures  we rely on every day, including buildings, roads, airports, tunnels, dams, bridges, and water supply and sewage treatment systems. Related subjects to this sector are: Structural engineering (design of structures to withstand stresses and pressures imposed through environmental conditions and human use) and Architectural engineering (sometimes referred to as ‘building engineering’, the application of engineering principles and technology to building design and construction).

Marine engineering

Being a marine engineer involves designing, building, servicing and repairing boats, ships, underwater crafts and offshore platforms and equipment.  You can work for private companies, the Ministry of Defence, the Merchant Navy or the Royal Navy.

You can find additional information relating to engineering on the SEMTA website and we have some great articles below.

Maths careers – do the maths!

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If you enjoy maths at school it makes sense to consider it as a serious degree option.  As a traditional, academic subject, maths is a really safe degree option, as many employers realise that if you’re good at this subject you’ll also be good at thinking things through and have analytical, problem-solving and organisational skills which can be applied to ... Read More »

Jobs in the power industry

There are more jobs to be filled in the power industry as the demand for alternative, renewable energy sources increases…  BY EMILY FROST We live in a time where there is a greater need than ever to find ways of preserving our planet.  Because of this, the power industry needs to continue the development of environmentally friendly methods of producing ... Read More »

Manufacturing and production careers for school leavers

Take a closer look at careers and qualifications in manufacturing and production for school leaversBY ALICE CATTLEYWe live in a world which allows us to buy things astonishingly quickly. At the touch of a button we can turn a collection of pixels on a screen into an item we can hold in our hands the very next day. Online consumerism ... Read More »

I, robot

Experts are planning a huge expansion in the UK robotics industry – could the multi-faceted and dynamic world of a Robotics engineer be for you?  BY LOUIS ASHWORTH From Wall-E to The Terminator, robots have captured the imagination of our society, and made people think more than ever about the role these electronic and mechanical agents could play in our ... Read More »

Women in Rail

Adeline Ginn, founder of Women in Rail, wants to encourage and support young women in careers in the rail industry. BY ADELINE GINN “About 18 months ago I was on my way to a business meeting with my CEO when we started discussing the lack of women in the rail industry,” begins Adeline Ginn, founder and chair of Women in ... Read More »

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