If you love electronics and finding out how they work, the perfect job for you is out there. Electrical engineering is a career in which you will design, test, and manufacture electronic components and equipment for commercial, military and industrial usage.
As an electrical engineer, you will have a varied work day. The first part of your job will consist of meeting with prospective clients and other engineers to determine the equipment that is needed and what uses it is needed for. You will then design, test and implement manufacture of these electrical components. Electrical engineers must follow strict guidelines and procedures. They may use computer assisted programs to design and implement these electrical components. They prepare drawings and topographical maps to ensure proper installation and standards are followed at all times. They specify purchase orders. They perform all of the calculations including construction and installation. They may investigate customer complaints and solve problems. They ensure that the budget is followed and oversee manufacture from inception to completion of each project. They may also improve electrical systems that are already in place. They keep detailed records on maintenance, documentation reports, and testing activities for future use.
Electrical Engineering Salary:
The current national average for the electrical engineering salary is around $89,000 per year or an hourly wage of $43. The amount that you make will be dependent upon your education, experience, type of work you specialize in and even the city and state that you work in. One of the most important aspects of the electrical engineering salary is the amount of experience that you have. A new graduate will not make as much as someone who has fifteen years of experience. A new electrical engineering graduate typically has a starting income of about $55,000 per year. This amount will steadily increase as you gain more experience. The average electrical engineering pay rate for someone with five years of experience is about $68,000 per year. With ten years of experience, the electrical engineering salary increases to more than $86,000 a year. Senior electrical engineers with at least fifteen years of experience make an annual wage of $108,000 per year. The top tier can be reached once you have at least twenty years of experience under your belt. At this level, the electrical engineering salary is at $132,000 per year or $63 an hour.
Electrical Engineering Education:
In order to become an electrical engineer, you will need to obtain a bachelor’s degree from a program that has been accredited by ABET. This will typically take four years for you to complete. Course work will include classroom work, laboratory and in field studies. Courses include learning drafting and design, engineering, differential equations, several courses in math and physics, electrical circuitry, digital systems design and more. Some programs offer cooperative learning where you will get to learn from other real electrical engineers in the field. This time spent can be credited towards classroom time. Licensing is not required for electrical engineering occupations, but it can get you higher level jobs and more pay. To become licensed you will need to pass the FE and PE exams. Continuing education courses may be required to maintain your license. A master’s degree is required for electrical engineers who plan to work in research or in management.
Electrical Engineering Work Environment:
The work environment for electrical engineers varies. They may work for the federal government, telecommunication carriers, semiconductor manufacturing companies, engineering companies and more. Some high level jobs can be found in research facilities. The work environment is typically in a well lit and temperature controlled office space. They often may visit work sites so some travel is required as a part of their job. They will have to attend lots of meetings and may have to give presentations to clients. The work may be stressful at times especially when working against an approaching deadline. The typical electrical engineer will work about forty hours each week. This may vary depending on what projects are ongoing. Some overtime may be required and is very common for this occupation. Some electrical engineers may be on call during installation and implementation of certain types of projects.
Electrical engineering is a very exciting field in which you can really stretch your imagination to the limit. It is your job to come up with ways to make electrical components perform better and more efficiently. If you are the type of person who is analytical and likes to figure out how things work and what makes them work that way, then you would be perfect for a career in electrical engineering. It is also a career that will see a lot of growth potential in the future. Most everything these days works off of electricity so this is a job that will only increase in demand as the years progress.