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any one out there a electrical egineer?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by steve-o, Nov 3, 2003.


  1. steve-o

    steve-o Guest

    Apr 17, 2002
    well this is what i want to do..i plan on either working with ge or siemens..which ever..and if anything else works even better...

    im just seeing what i have to look foward to..
    what should i start studying before i go back to college..any courses you would recomend...or books...anything?

    thanks
    steve
     
  2. Phat Ham

    Phat Ham

    Feb 13, 2000
    DC
    I'll be graduating in May with a B.S. in electrical engineering. Don't limit yourself to just GE or Siemens. There are plenty of other good companies to work for. Besides, by the time you graduate you might not even want to work for an engineering firm any more. The great thing about having an engineering degree is you can go into business or consulting or pretty much anything else if you feel like it.

    Electrical engineering is one of the toughest majors out there, so if you're the squeamish type when it comes to academics don't bother with EE.

    As far as books go, maybe look into The Art of Electronics by Paul Horowitz. Might be a little overwhelming for someone just getting into electronics though.

    All you really need to know is Ohm's Law:

    V = IR

    ;)
     
  3. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Being a EE sure is glamorous:rolleyes:, but you won't get rich doing it.

    Starting salaries are great, but I've been a EE for 21 years now and those (brilliant) youngin's coming out of engineering school make almost as much as I do:mad: Of course, when I graduated from college and started out as an engineer, I made as much money as my Mom who had been a teacher for a long time. She was a little miffed about that.

    My wife is a Chemical Engineer by degree and I have to say that her courses were murder compared to mine. Especially when she was a senior and had an 8 hour lab and then a lecture class after that...at least I had some free time so I could make her dinner.

    If I had the gift of gab, which I don't, I would have used my engineering degree to get into technical sales...there has to be a bunch of money in that.

    Oh, and most Dilbert cartoons really happen...
     
  4. membranophone

    membranophone

    Mar 19, 2000
    Madison, WI
    I'm finishing up a chemical engineering degree, and I agree with BillyB about ChE. It's absolutely brutal. I know all about 6-8 hour labs that stretch well past what you sane people call dinnertime. I have some friends in EE that say it isn't much better.

    Be prepared for 4-5 years of academic rape if you go into engineering. It's good money though.

    If EE is anything like ChE, PAY ATTENTION in your calculus classes, especially differential equations. I'm guessing it would also be good to have a handle on the Electromagnetism portion of the physics classes you took in high school.
     
  5. steve-o

    steve-o Guest

    Apr 17, 2002
    i do like learning..but i haven't had any math in two years...let alone calculus.....

    i guess i could get a book and start studying...
    im just nervous about it all..

    well my friend works for ge now...
    one of the EE now just got out of school (6 years) and is making 100,000 atleast....

    its not all about the money..because i do love elctronics

    steve
     
  6. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Steve-O, unless that person has a MSEE or something, 100K to start is way, way above average. I just looked at our HR page and a BSEE would start at about $50K/year in the East/Midwest/Pacific NW and $60K/year in California due to the cost of living. This doesn't include sign-on bonuses, but I have no idea how much that is...a few grand maybe.

    Also for the past far too many years, a 3% raise has been considered a really good one...but it is a whole lot better than no raise, a pay cut or getting laid off... It's a jungle out here:(
     
  7. steve-o

    steve-o Guest

    Apr 17, 2002
    well thats with bonuses..and he didn't start this year or anything..he worked for them before all of this. so it may have helped..

    is it normal to be nervous about this? i just haven't been in school for awhile maybe thats it

    steve
     
  8. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Sure it's normal...any new journey can bring on some apprehension.

    I think that someone going back to school after a break is going to be more focused and more mature. I know that I wasn't as focused as I should have been...I wanted to spend a lot of time playing bass (and guitar) and modifying Fender tube amps to make them scream (this is back when Mesa Boogie was a mail order company and they had a lead time of many months).

    Don't be afraid to ask lots of questions, seek help from professors, etc. That's what you're paying them for!!!! Be a demanding (but polite) consumer.

    I believe that most engineering schools will have to take a math placement test to see if you need to go back and brush up on Trig or Geometry before diving head first into Calc.
     
  9. steve-o

    steve-o Guest

    Apr 17, 2002
    cool thanks guys

    if i knew this is what i was going to do..i might have taken calculus in high school instead of skipping my senoir year..but hey only 1 f all semester..lol stupid 1 st block at 730 in the morning..ok so i was up..but i was up playing bass...lol

    steve
     
  10. membranophone

    membranophone

    Mar 19, 2000
    Madison, WI
    I didn't take calculus until my freshman year of college and I did fine. You just have to have motivation.
     
  11. thrash_jazz

    thrash_jazz

    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    If you take engineering, just remember the golden rule:

    "D means Degree"

    I took Physics - we got the nasty math AND the nasty labs ;)
     
  12. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    C stands for Celebrate

    and Physics is Phun!!!!

    My daughter didn't think that was too phunny last year when she had Honors Physics (or whatever they called that particular upper level course). As the year progressed and she started to appreciate the application of the material that she covered in class, she decided that Physics is Phun and is now considering studying it in college.

    She's really strong in math and science but since my wife and I are both engineers, SHE could never be one...
     
  13. thrash_jazz

    thrash_jazz

    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Physics at the university level is MUCH harder than in high school. Feel free to ask any questions about it...
     
  14. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Perhaps...but you have no idea how intense the classes at that High School are. It's one of the top rated High Schools in the country and there are regularly a number of students that achieve perfect scores on the ACT exam.

    Many student go on to find college a piece of cake after having graduated from that high school.
     
  15. Phat Ham

    Phat Ham

    Feb 13, 2000
    DC
    I agree with BillyB about the getting rich thing. Starting salaries are great, but if you stay in engineering there isn't too much room to climb on the career ladder (from what i've heard). All the people I know who are making loads of money who are "engineers" are actually people in managerial positions who started out as engineers. Of course they couldn't have gotten to where they are now without having first been engineers. Either way you cut it it's nice to have an engineering degree, but you have to pay your dues to get one (unless you are a systems engineer, but I won't get into that).

    P.S. BillyB, where do you work? I'm graduating in May and need a job ::hint::hint:: ;)
     
  16. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Underwriters Laboratories Inc. aka UL. We've been testing products for safety for almost 110 years (I've been here for nearly 22 of them :eek: )

    It's a fun job most of the time...setting up test programs to see if an electrical product will catch fire or blow up (I've seen plenty of that), but the stress of having 20 customers after you to finish their project first gets to be a bit much after a while.
     
  17. slugworth

    slugworth Banned

    Jun 12, 2003
    So. Calif.
     
  18. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    slugworth...your point?

    As we Engineers say "Yesterday I couldn't spell Engineer, today I are one";)
     
  19. thrash_jazz

    thrash_jazz

    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Pfff. Go drive a train. ;)
     
  20. Tsal

    Tsal

    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    I had my entry exams today, actually, for EE at a Polytechnic.

    Well, not really for EE but it's the same entry exam for all technical schools around here, basicly it was some simple mathematics and physics/chemistry. Not really that hard, except that the last time I studied physics was during my first year in high school so I had really difficult time :D

    So if it's anything like that in the States, take couple of courses of physics on electricity and mechanics(and electronics of course!), and couple of courses of mathematics regarding functions and geometry, they should help you get started.