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MSc in Mechanical Engineering
2

MSc in Mechanical Engineering

MSc in Mechanical Engineering

(OP)
Dear fellow members,

A little background:

I'm a pretty much new mechanical engineering currently working for the Oil & Gas Industry. I don't have much experience yet - I would say about 2 years of experience in both equipment design (both pressure vessels and heat exchangers) and some projects where I provided pipe stress analysis under my belt.

If it's useful, I'd also add that I graduated relatively recently. In 2016 to be more specific.

I'm researching into what field to pursuit in a master in mechanical engineering, both to give my career a push and because it's something that i've always wanted to do. Not to start next year, but to keep it in the back of my mind so that I can prepare myself financially to tackle this next challenge in the upcoming years.

Now, the thing is - of course, I want the postgraduate studies to be alligned with my line of work.

In my organization, most mechanical engineers have taken management postgraduate studies or else, worked for many years with an undergraduate degree, so I don't much of an example to follow. I understand that a lot of master programs require us applicants to choose a field of research before enrolling. Can you provide me with some insight/examples on this?

RE: MSc in Mechanical Engineering

Many people here will tell you that job advancement is very possible without the MS degree. Some have even stated it was a hindrance.

I pursued mine because "it's something i've always wanted to do," also. But my chosen field was Manufacturing Engineering. My degree helped open a number of doors that would not have been open otherwise. It also helped distinguish my skills & talents from the "Manufacturing Engineers without degrees" that are common in US manufacturing industries. I feel it has served me well.

I also caution you about the MS program you choose. Many university MS programs are nothing more than a skills-building exercise and preparation for entry into their Ph.D. program. You have to evaluate what skills & content you will get out of your investment and decide if it has any perceived benefit to your career.

TygerDawg
Blue Technik LLC
Virtuoso Robotics Engineering
www.bluetechnik.com

RE: MSc in Mechanical Engineering

(OP)
Tygerdawg,

Thank you so much for your personal experience.

Yes. I've also read a lot of answers where other engineers have stated that a masters actually hurt them when looking for a job due to circumstances such as having advanced education but not enough experience, etc.

That is one of the reasons why I'd like to align an MSc with my current line of work (pressure vessel design and pipe stress analysis), so that I can actually apply the theory.

Coursing a PhD is not currently in my to-do list, though I don't entirely discard it either.

RE: MSc in Mechanical Engineering

With 2 years experience, starting a Master's is a pretty gray area. When you finish you'll have 4-5 years experience and a masters. If you stay with your current firm, the MS could easily be seen as a major positive, more likely it would be seen as a minor positive or neutral. Changing jobs at 4-5 years, many potential employers would look at the MS as a positive, but many would see it as a negative. At 8-10 years experience, I've never heard of someone being downchecked because of an MS in ME.

I got my MSME because I wanted it. I'm glad I got it. It did not result in advancement withing my company, but it might have helped at layoff time since I never got laid off.

I've done a lot of consulting work with pressure vessel manufacturers (and have several patents in related areas) and my MS (emphasis in fluid mechanics and thermodynamics) has been quite useful in that field. I'm not sure that a mechanism's emphasis would have been as useful in pressure-vessel work.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

In questions of science, the authority of a thousand is not worth the humble reasoning of a single individual. Galileo Galilei, Italian Physicist

RE: MSc in Mechanical Engineering

2
I too did my MSME because "it's something I've always wanted to do". It helps if you know which niche you are interested in pursuing. Mine is in Structural Dynamics and FEA. It was far more enjoyable than undergraduate studies. I woke up daily looking forward to going to classes that I picked and working on projects that I found interesting.

Financially speaking, you could seek funding and even a stipend for doing your MSME. You won't get rich nor will you starve. Most of my cohorts didn't pay anything out of pocket.

Career wise, I believe it depends a lot on how you use it. It may or may not help your advancement up the career ladder of choice. Odds are it would but there is no guarantees.


Good luck!
Jason

RE: MSc in Mechanical Engineering

I have a Masters of Materials Engineering and I'm halfway through a Masters of Electrical Engineering. I've never found the advanced degrees to be an impediment. That said, all my post graduate education has been in night school while I worked full time. Guys that just go to school tend to be out of touch. Also, I enjoy the course work and how it ties into my day job. if you don't like school, the time and cost of a Masters may not be worth it.

-JFPE

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