Getting Your Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical Engineering Degree

Getting Your Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical engineering is a branch of engineering that can be a good career path to pursue. Mechanical engineering is all about objects and systems in motion and touches every aspect of modern life.  It’s one of the oldest engineering disciplines and combines engineering, physics, and mathematics.

Those with master’s degrees in mechanical engineering work in a variety of fields such as aerospace, architecture, clean energy, electronics, mobility, oil and gas, and more.

While studying mechanical engineering you would learn and use tools such as CAD (computer-aided design), CAM (computer-aided manufacturing), industrial equipment and machinery, heating and cooling systems, and more.

You can earn your associate’s degree, bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, or a doctorate in mechanical engineering. While you can find a decent job with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, going for your master’s degree can get you to the next level.

A good mechanical engineer is an innovator at heart and enjoys complex problem-solving. They also tend to have excellent communication skills, are strong analytical thinkers, and want to work to make the world a better place.

According to BLS, job growth is projected to grow 4% from 2019 to 2029, about average for all occupations. The median annual income is $88,430 in 2019.

Online or In-person

You can choose to earn your mechanical engineering master’s degree online or in person. Whether you go online or in-person depends on what you are looking for in a program and what would work best for your lifestyle. Some enjoy the online option for flexibility and others would prefer an in-person program based on what the program might offer them.

A Master’s of Mechanical Engineering  Program

There tends to be a lot of competition in mechanical engineering so being able to get your master’s in mechanical engineering will help you get ahead, allow you to pursue more options, and in the end make more money. In addition to helping you advance your career, you will also be able to acquire even more skills and expertise along the way.

Most master’s in mechanical engineering programs take around 2 years to complete but that will also depend on if you attend part or full-time.

Concentrations

When you go into a master’s degree program, you will need to decide on a concentration based on your interest and future plans. Here are a few examples:

  • Robotics and Control– where students would prepare for a career in robotics and its applications in society and focus on topics such as human interaction, medical robotics, and more.
  • Biomechanics– where students would learn about the mechanics of biological tissues, tissue engineering, and the strength and structural behavior of biocompatible materials.
  • Mechanics and Materials-where students would learn about the dynamic behavior of materials, applied finite elements, and mechanical behavior of materials.
  • Energy Concentration– where students learn about solar fundamentals, hydropower, and solar energy engineering.

Common Classes

Classes will depend on your concentration, here are some examples:

  • Biofluid Mechanics
  • Energy and Environment
  • Precision Mechanical Design
  • Intermediate Dynamics

Admission Requirements

Admission requirements differ based on the school and program, however, most will require students to have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited school, to complete an application essay, and submit letters of recommendation.

Some schools might also require professional experience, but even if the school doesn’t, it can help to have that work experience to put on the application. Schools usually also want students to have a 3.0 GPA or higher.

How to Choose a Program

There are many different factors when choosing a mechanical engineering master’s program. Students should look at the length of each one, the course format, available concentrations, and final project requirements. Students should also consider the curriculum and the cost.

Accreditation status for each program can also make a difference and can affect future career opportunities. Departments often receive programmatic accreditation from field-specific accrediting bodies. Accreditation will indicate that the program meets set standards of quality for the electrical engineering profession.

Students should look for a program with accreditation from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). Degrees from an ABET-accredited program are required for licensure examinations.

Top Master’s in Mechanical Engineering  Programs

There are many different masters in mechanical engineering programs, some are in-person, and some are online.

Here are 10 of the top masters in mechanical engineering  programs:

  • Stanford University
  • The California Institute of Technology
  • The University of California, Berkeley
  • Cornell University
  • Northwestern University
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Columbia University in the City of New York
  • Duke University
  • Rice University
  • The University of Michigan-Ann Arbor

Here are 10 of the top online master’s in Mechanical Engineering  programs:

  • Stanford University
  • The University of Florida
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • The University of Southern California
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • University of Washington
  • The University of Virginia
  • Boston University
  • North Carolina State University

Jobs With a Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering

Project Engineer

Annual Median Pay is $69,157 according to Payscale

Project Engineers are the technical point of contact for the consumer. They also prepare the schedule, pre-plan, and do many other technical tasks that need to be done for the project.

Senior Manufacturing Engineer

Annual Median Pay is $92,209 according to Payscale

Senior Manufacturing Engineers are executives who work in a company’s production operations. They handle the monitoring and maintenance of technical aspects of the manufacturing process.

Senior Mechanical Engineer

Annual Median Pay is $98,319 according to Payscale

Senior Mechanical Engineers design, research, build, test, and improve mechanical and electrical devices, equipment, and systems.

Engineering Group Manager

Annual Median Pay is $116,548 according to Payscale

Engineering Group Managers are responsible for overseeing the quality of group project work and provide the necessary direction to ensure that the financial, administrative, and other duties are met with a project.

Design Engineer

Annual Median Pay is $68,296 according to Payscale

Design Engineers use computer-aided design (CAD) software to develop, test, and improve manufacturing processes and product designs.

Scholarships for Students Getting a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering

Here are a few scholarships for those getting their master’s in mechanical engineering. You can also find our longer list of scholarships for mechanical engineering majors at College Recon.

AREMA Educational Foundation Scholarships

This scholarship is for engineering students specializing in railway engineering. Students must have completed at least one quarter or semester in an accredited 4 or 5-year engineering or engineering technology at the undergraduate or graduate level. There are many AREMA scholarships, such as the AREMA Women’s Engineering Scholarship, which is $1,500, the Michael and Gina Garcia-Rail Engineering Scholarship, for $3,000 and many are location-based.

GeneTex Scholarship

This scholarship program will award a $2,000 scholarship to students pursuing a STEM undergraduate or graduate degree. Students must be in good standing at an accredited college or university with a declared STEM major. There will be one recipient.

George B. Hightower, P.E. Fellowship

This fellowship is for current engineering undergraduate or graduate students who are enrolled in or graduated from an ABET-accredited engineering program. Students must be an NSPE member or student member. There would be one recipient, in the amount of $3,000.

The AESF Foundation Scholarship

This scholarship is available to undergraduates and graduates that are studying chemical engineering, material science or engineering, mechanical engineering, metallurgical engineering, environmental engineering, or chemistry. They also need to be in junior status or above when applying and senior status in the fall. There will be multiple recipients, at $1,500 each.

Monterey Bay Officer Spouses Club Scholarship Award

Multiple recipients, Varies

This is a merit-based scholarship available to military dependents of active duty, retired, or deceased military members that are living in the Monterey County area or military dependents of Naval Postgraduate school alumni living anywhere. Selection is based on academic achievement, extracurricular activities, community involvement, and essays. Students need to be seeking a degree in a STEM field. They also must be an MBSC member, an immediate family member of an MBOSC member, an immediate family member of any active duty, retired, or deceased military member in the Monetary Bay area, or be a dependent of someone in NSA Monterey, NPS, POM, DLFIC, FNMOC, the Coast Guard, or any alumni from a military post on the Monterey Peninsula. They can be pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree, at a full-time or part-time level. The amount varies and there will be multiple recipients.

Related Majors:

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Robotics Technology
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Industrial Engineering
  • Applied Physics
  • Engineering Mechanics

 

RELATED:

 

 

 

About the author

+ posts

Julie Provost is a freelance writer, blogger, and owner of Soldier's Wife, Crazy Life, a support blog for military spouses. She lives in Tennessee with her National Guard husband and three boys.