What I Wish I Knew About Majoring in Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical engineering is known as the most general and adaptable engineering degree. With mechanical engineering as your degree, you can do almost anything with the knowledge and skills you learn. There are things I wish I knew more about before I decided to major in mechanical engineering, and so I want to pass some of those things on to those who are thinking about majoring in mechanical engineering. So, here are some things to consider before majoring in mechanical engineering:

It is hard

It’s no lie when people say engineering is a hard degree to obtain. The amount of advanced math and science classes you need to take is a lot. Alongside those you will take many engineering classes that seem almost impossible to pass. If you were a gifted student in high school, you may not have learned how to properly study. I know I can say this is true for me. As you go along you are going to have to learn what study habits work for you, as it is almost impossible to get by without studying.

You learn a little bit of everything

I did not realize how broad mechanical engineering was until I started, as you take many classes out of the department so you get that background that mechanical engineering has. You will take Industrial Engineering Classes, Electrical and Computer Engineering classes, as well as other classes of your choice that would be considered out of department.

Hefty Workload

Piggy backing off of the idea of your classes being hard, it is also a very heavy workload you get too. A lot of your big engineering classes assign 1 homework assignment every couple weeks, and it seems easy enough, but once you have procrastinated it, and you go to do it, you see how big of an assignment it is and you feel overwhelmed. Especially in your first couple years where you also need to take your math classes. Math classes have a common theme of having at least 1 assignment due a day, which makes a very busy and overwhelming week. A big thing in any degree is learning how to manage your time and juggle the assignments you have due in that time span.

Overall, mechanical engineering is a very interesting major to consider. If you believe you can juggle the workload and difficulty of a engineering major, I would highly recommend it. It is a very rewarding degree. If you want to do engineering but you do not know what discipline, the broadness, with everything you learn, mechanical engineering is the way to go!

By Elizabeth Beckstrom
Elizabeth Beckstrom Career Mentor