Is the life of an engineer really for you?

It is not uncommon for children who love Physics or Calculus to think engineering is the way forward. Some also candidly say that if you love tinkering and building stuff, then engineering is for you. True, those are great skills to get started in considering an engineering course.

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An engineer’s responsibility involves being able to locate and define technical problems; to research, analyse, apply the principles of science and math. Then, transfer information beyond math and science in ethical and viable ways. If you think you are passionate about ‘solving’ problems, then no one must indeed stop you from considering it. The world absolutely needs engineers and good creative ones.

Here’s why though you may want to think again,

  1. At the end of your engineering course, will you be needed by top companies? Sadly, that may not be the case. An engineering graduate will have the same struggles that any other graduate would have.
  2. Will engineers get a great salary right from the beginning? Yes, they do, but with seniority, a salary-increase would mean that your job is less about dealing with the technical stuff and more about management. It’s certainly going to be more than math and science. It’s going to be about economics and business. It will be about communication and sustainability. Can you picture yourself in diverse roles where you will be expected to lead?
  3. Once an Engineer will life be easy? That’s hardly the case. You may not find time to enjoy the fruits of your success unless you discipline yourself to keep a balanced life.

Those of you who want to study engineering because you want to find real-life solutions to problems will find engineering challenging but exciting. Do it if you are dreaming of building bridges, do it if your heart is set on working on cool gadgets. Remember almost everything we use to ease our daily lives was created by engineers.

What you learn as an undergrad in engineering will be broad. It will not make you an ‘expert’ for most jobs. Some of the best-known companies in the world initially hire engineers who have done well in their respective colleges, only to train them through specialised induction programs. They are made to work with real-time projects while being encouraged to come up with the most viable solution. This, after running through multiple perspectives and ideas. The engineers are then placed in key roles in various sub engineering departments based on their talents. They are then trained to further take-up senior roles in the organisation.

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If you are in high school you probably are already asking yourself if engineering will be worth your time and money. If you have finally decided it might be, you will have to waste no more time in preparing for the entrance exams. The competition is high in India, with almost 9.34 lakh students applying for JEE (Mains) in 2020.

When you take up engineering you will have some of the best minds in society as your peers. Even if you diversify at some point, the network you create will come in handy. It is not guaranteed that at the end of your course you will end up with a core engineering job but what you learn in engineering might be a stepping stone in your future.

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