Every year, more than 1.5 million students graduate as engineers in India. India is known as the engineering hub of the world. Over the years, there has been a rapid increase in the number of government and private colleges offering a plethora of courses. Engineering became one of the most preferred courses amongst Indian families largely due to the money and respect involved. However, does this hold true even today? Or do children follow the herd and pick up this career path? There is nothing wrong in choosing engineering as a career, but the picture is not completely rosy.
Here are a few things that you should know before choosing engineering:
Your reason for becoming an engineer
If you are pursuing this field because you find it a lucrative career option, with easy money and a balanced lifestyle, you should rethink. To be remotely successful in any field, you must work hard. Engineering is no different. Similarly, don’t choose this field because your immediate family or relatives want you to. Go through the coursework and elective subjects. Talk to engineers who have been working in the field for a few years and find out what a day at work looks like. If these things appeal to you, your reasons are right. If not, you may regret your choice.
Hard work is not limited to admission in a good college
Getting admission in a good college is not the end of a difficult road, but only the beginning. You will have to work hard through 8 semesters, and pay attention in every lecture. If you don’t understand what is taught in class, you have plenty of other resources outside — refer to books, use the internet, and talk to your seniors. This is necessary if you want to be a good employable engineer, and not just hold a degree. Moreover, most companies do not prefer students who have a KT in even one subject, making the necessity to pass every semester with flying colours even more important.
The true story about jobs and placements
Not all engineers receive appealing packages just after they graduate. This is limited only to the top IITians. In fact, even IITs do not record 100% placements. The average salary of an electronics engineer comes to around 3.3 lakh per annum, all incentives included. Before you apply to various engineering colleges, find out about their placement policies and companies which have been visiting their campus regularly.
Engineering is not a stepping stone to a management degree
Over the last decade, the number of engineering graduates who look at Management as an obvious next step has been increasing rapidly. An MBA right after an engineering degree is not useful, let alone ideal. Which is why, don’t look at engineering as a stepping stone to MBA. Work as an engineer for a few years, and then find out if your field even requires you to do an MBA. If you want to eventually do an MBA, a management course at the bachelor level is more relevant.
There is a large gap between what is taught and what is required
Engineering colleges don’t keep up with rapidly changing technology and fall behind. It is important to study the curriculum to get your basics right, but there is still a gap between what you know and what is required of you. Which is why, don’t assume that you will know everything there is to know at the end of four years. Be open to rigorous training periods at your first job, and remember that you will always have to keep learning.
These factors are important to give you a realistic view of the course, and not to dissuade you in any form. Don’t expect a very easy road during or after you get your degree. But, if you have the passion and skill set to pursue engineering, follow your dream with all your heart.
5 things that you should know before choosing engineering was originally published in Toppr Blog on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.