Electromechanical Engineering

Electromechanical engineering is an interdisciplinary field that combines electrical, electronic and mechanical engineering, as well as elements of computer programming. Learn about degree programs, related jobs and the career outlook for this field.

Is Electromechanical Engineering for Me?

Career Overview

As its name suggests, the field of electromechanical engineering combines the mechanical and electrical engineering disciplines to produce various kinds of automated or robotic systems. Electromechanical engineers also design electronic components, such as semiconductors. Common areas of employment include power plants, food production, pharmaceutical companies and the manufacturing industry. In these settings, electromechanical engineering technicians develop, troubleshoot, maintain and operate hardware.

To begin a career as an electromechanical engineering technician or technologist, you may need an associate's degree. It helps to be creative and have good computer skills to work in electromechanical engineering. As an electromechanical engineering technician, you work under engineers, initially with limited independence. As you progress and show proficiency, supervisory positions may be open to you.

Salaries and Employment Outlook

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that the median annual wage for electromechanical engineering technicians was $51,820 as of May 2012, and that most electromechanical engineering technicians made between $33,360 and $76,590 (www.bls.gov). Additionally, the median wages for electrical and electronic engineers were $87,920 and $91,820, respectively, in the same year. The median wage for mechanical engineers was $80,580.

The BLS predicts that the employment of electronics and electrical engineers will increase by 4% between 2012 and 2022. Mechanical engineers and electromechanical technicians should experience job growth of 5% and 4%, respectively.

How Can I Work in Electromechanical Engineering?

Education Options

For a career in electromechanical engineering, you can begin preparing in high school with courses in drafting, statistics, mathematics and the physical sciences. You can pursue either an associate's degree or a bachelor's degree in electromechanical engineering technology to work as an engineering technologist or technician.

Associate's degree programs in electromechanical engineering technology include courses in programming, logic, circuits and motors. You learn to troubleshoot, identify, use and control mechanical, hydraulic and pneumatic systems or components. Completing a bachelor's degree program can strengthen these skills, as well as providing further courses and opportunities for research and internships. Both degree programs involve hands-on work in the field. You could pursue a master's in electrical engineering or a doctoral degree if you plan to work in teaching or research.

Degree and Licensing Requirements

If you wish to be an engineer, not a technician, make sure to choose a bachelor's degree in electromechanical, mechatronic, mechanical, electrical or electronic engineering accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). You must become licensed to work as a professional engineer. This involves an initial test on fundamentals upon graduation, work experience and a culminating exam on principles and practices.

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