There are plenty of reasons to study engineering, but is it right for you and are you the right person to pursue a career as an engineer? Find out the skills and personality traits you'll need to succeed as an engineer and if it’s an industry you’ll enjoy.
Would I be a good engineer?
If you are wondering what it takes to be an engineer, there are a variety of factors you need to consider, such as skills, interests and personal traits:
Numeracy skills – You don’t need to be amazing at maths to become an engineer, but it helps to have a strong grasp of numeracy and a general interest in the subject. You’ll typically be making some important calculations, such as measuring, as well as budgeting.
Problem solving – Whether it’s designing a structure or new technology to fix a problem, or actually getting the design up and running, engineering involves a lot of problem solving. Solving problems will be something you enjoy and you’ll use your critical thinking to help solve small to global issues as you constantly wonder how things work.
Communication and teamwork – You'll typically be working with other engineers as well as clients and suppliers. You’ll need good communication and team working skills to work efficiently and carry out projects to a high standard, ensuring everyone is working together and knows what is going on. With experience and strong interpersonal skills, you could see yourself leading teams as a senior engineer further in your career.
Creativity - As an engineer you’ll need to develop and design new products that will require a good level of creativity. You’ll get to witness the results of your hard work, thanks to your creative thinking, and even make a difference in the world.
Reasons to study engineering
Engineering is a broad field that offers exciting career opportunities where you’ll get to be creative, solve problems and explore how things work every day.
Some of the reasons to follow a career in engineering include:
Employability – Engineers are constantly in high demand, so you’ll enjoy fantastic graduate employment prospects. Some areas are in more demand than others, such as aerospace, electronics, nuclear and industrial. Even if you choose not to pursue an engineering career, with the skills learnt and developed from studying an engineering degree, you’ll be sought after by a variety of employers and industries.
High income potential – If you pursue a graduate role after your degree, you can expect to earn an average salary of around £24,000. With more experience, you can look to earn between £50,000 and £80,000 (National Careers Service).
International opportunities - As an engineer you could get the opportunity to explore the world, working on sites, mines and helping to develop city infrastructures. With hard-work and experience, you could eventually go on to work for some of the biggest international companies.Ford, BP and Airbus are some of the top global graduate employers looking for talented engineers.
Improve the world – You will be using your skills and expertise to contribute to society. You will be solving everyday problems and challenges to help improve our way of life, whether that is through a new piece of technology or construction of a bridge.
What engineering discipline is best for me?
There are lots of types of engineering, so it maybe be difficult to know where to start. Fortunately, you can read more about the different engineering types and what one will be best for you to study at university.
Why should I study engineering at the University of Sheffield?
As one of the top ranked universities in the UK for engineering, the University of Sheffield is a respected institution to study an engineering degree at. The University is ranked 25th in the UK as a whole and then ranked 9th for Civil Engineering and 6th for Chemical Engineering in The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019.
Benefit from state-of-the-art facilities
You’ll be able to take advantage of, and study in, the University’s £81 million pound building, The Diamond. This unique structure boasts top of the range facilities to provide engineering students with all the tools they need to learn and succeed during their degree. The Diamond features dedicated rooms with all of the machinery and technology required to fully involve students with different areas of engineering. From rooms for electronic machines and bioengineering tissue to a clean room, materials lab and thermodynamics area, The Diamond has it all.
You can explore The Diamond through this insightful and engaging 360 degree video tour.
Global industry partners
Studying engineering at the University of Sheffield will give you access to some international industry leaders that have strong partnerships with the University. You will have opportunities to experience engineering with these global giants and enhance your education. Some of the University’s partners include Mclaren, Boeing and Siemens.
Develop and progress
If you study engineering at Sheffield you will be taught by academics who are experts in their fields, combining teaching with research to develop your engineering knowledge and skills. You will learn through a variety of teaching methods such as lectures, lab sessions and independent study that create an optimum learning environment.
You’ll also have opportunity to work on an industrial training programme, giving you the chance to work in groups to solve problems for some of the University’s global industry partners.
The engineering degrees are designed to give you an in-depth understanding of engineering before allowing you to specialise in an area you are passionate about.
Study engineering at the International College
Thanks to our International Foundation Year in Science and Engineering at the International College, we have seen students from a variety of backgrounds progress on to a range of engineering degrees at the University of Sheffield.
Dzikry, from Malaysia, is one of many. He began his UK education at the International College before progressing onto an undergraduate degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering, BEng (Hons). Discover his story below.