Manufacturing Engineering  Program Description


Insider Info

dotManufacturing engineering students tend to have a few things in common: they're problem solvers and creative thinkers. They're good with computers and meticulous about details.

Joan Zywina is the academic assistant to the associate dean of engineering at a university. She says these are just some of the skills students are expected to master by the time they graduate from their manufacturing engineering program.

Manufacturing engineering technology programs take a more hands-on approach than straight engineering programs. Grads become engineering technologists rather than engineers. They'll be more involved in the ground-level technical aspects of manufacturing, rather than the more abstract design work that engineers often do.

Manufacturing engineering programs teach students how to design manufacturing processes and systems.

Charles Harrell is chair of Brigham Young University's manufacturing engineering technology program. He says that by the time his students graduate, they will be able to take a product specification and develop a plan and procure the necessary resources (equipment, tooling, etc.) to efficiently manufacture products according to specification.

Zywina's school looks for students who have a minimum 80 percent average in high school, and have completed courses in calculus, algebra, chemistry, physics and English. Being computer-literate will really help.

Donald Zook is a former professor in the department of industrial and manufacturing engineering at California State Polytechnic University at Pomona. Zook says high school students should be paying attention in English class.

"We have many students that are technically proficient, but hide it well!" he says. In other words, you could have the greatest idea in the world, but if you can't communicate it properly, it isn't going to work.

Bradley Kramer is head of the industrial and manufacturing systems engineering program at Kansas State University. He suggests high school students try to get involved in a variety of things ranging from drama to student government, debating and sports, to help develop teamwork skills.

The main costs are tuition and books.


Occupational Outlook Handbook
For more information related to this field of study, see: Industrial Engineers, Including Health and Safety

Engineering: Your Future
Great site from the American Society for Engineering Education

Graduating Engineer Online
This online magazine is devoted to helping future engineers develop skills and find a job

Engineering Career Coach
Useful career information

Just the Facts

Want a quick overview of what this program is about? Check out Just the Facts for a simple description.