Electrical engineers work on projects involving advanced technology such as power generation and GPS systems.
Electrical engineers develop improved and more efficient electronic devices. These engineers also test new technology and perform troubleshooting. During the initial phases of a new project, engineers must determine the purpose of the technological innovation, and if it is a feasible project, they are then responsible to select materials and components to complete the project. Engineers frequently utilize computer technology to prepare project designs.
Once projects move into the development phases, engineers test the new technology to see if it is working and to improve it. Since projects frequently do not turn out as planned, engineers are constantly troubleshooting.
Electrical engineers are assigned to a variety of projects. Some specialize in car electrical systems while others might specialize in telecommunications technology.
Electrical engineers can be found in factories, laboratories, and office complexes. Most work regular 40 hour weeks, but they occasionally work overtime to meet project deadlines.
Individuals that get accepted into college engineering programs usually have very good grades in science and math courses. They also do well in computer science, English, and social science courses.
Engineers must pay attention to details, possess logical reasoning skills, and be creative. They also need to be able to work with groups.
How much will I earn?
Salaries for engineers in the 50th percentile were between $60,640-94,050 annually during 2008. Those with salaries in the lower 10th percentile made $49,120 or less while those in the upper 10th percentile made $115,240 or more annually.
Salaries for electronics engineers were between $64,440-99,630 annually during 2008. Those with salaries in the lower 10th percentile made $52,050 or less while those in the upper 10th percentile made $119,900 or more annually.
How many jobs are there?
During 2008, nearly 291,000 electrical and electronics engineers were employed in the United States. Electronics engineers often worked for medical technology, telecommunications, or electronics companies.
What is the future outlook for this career?
There should be plenty of jobs available for electrical engineers in the future. Job growth for electrical engineers is projected to grow at a slower rate than growth in other industries at least until 2016. Because of increased demand for cell phone transmitters and large generators for energy creation, more opportunities will exist for electrical engineers.
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