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Author Topic: Dramatic career change - please help  (Read 1760 times)

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Offline brad87Topic starter

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Dramatic career change - please help
« on: August 05, 2014, 02:57:01 AM »
Hi guys,

I am new to this forum and I really hope you will be able to give me an advice.

I am 26 year old Master of Science in Architectural Engineering with 2 years of professional practice. Unfortunately, I am not very happy about being an architect and if I could turn back time I would definitely do it and choose something different.

At the moment I am establishing my own company based on quite innovative idea (mixed IT and Archi.). If everything goes well my finances will be secured with not much attention from my side. It means that I might have a lot of free time soon for developing my interests. These are mostly related to different kinds of engineering - especially R&D projects, innovative, visionary things.

Since as a kid I have spent just years on building simple robots, playing with soldering tool, transformers, coils, engines etc. I got an idea that perhaps ROBOTICS is the right way to go now. Of course, I am not thinking about industrial side of this discipline.

I am ready to abandon all my current architectural knowledge (seriously) but on the other hand - maybe there are some elements that could be helpful? Architecture as a science is strictly related to construction (lots of CAD), ergonomics, functionalism, human factors and of course design. Do you think any of these skills would be advantageous in robotics?

Till the end of this month I need to register to the new University. I choose Mechanical Engineering at the best Technical University here (with possibility of taking Robotics as a specialization) as I believe it can give me a good background for the beginning. For now I decided for extramural type of studies - which means that I will be attending to classes only during the weekends. Since my business is not working yet this is the most reasonable option for me. Of course, if everything will be fine I will be able to switch to normal (daily) type after some time.

Please, let me know what do you honestly think about all of this. On one hand this is really what turns me on, on the other - I might be a bit old for such a move (should be 30 while obtaining BS degree). There is also another question related to job prospects.. Some people say that being a "specialist" in many different fields is not worth too much. And that you should become a MASTER only in one, narrow area. But that does not agree with definition of Systems Engineering which seems to quite popular discipline nowadays..

Thank you!
« Last Edit: August 05, 2014, 02:58:52 AM by brad87 »

Offline jkerns

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Re: Dramatic career change - please help
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2014, 11:56:00 AM »
I was 59 the last time I changed careers. I also have a lot of students in their thirties or older. So, 30 doesn't seem too old to me.

If you are going to run your own business, do you  actually need the degree? Or could you just pick up some classes?

Why mechanical engineering? I would think that with the arch. eng. degree you would be more lacking in electrical / computer areas.
I get paid to play with robots - can't beat that with a stick.

http://www.ltu.edu/engineering/mechanical/bachelor-science-robotics-engineering.asp

Offline brad87Topic starter

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Re: Dramatic career change - please help
« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2014, 01:39:33 AM »
jkerns - thank you very much for your reply.

I wish to have another degree also for myself and to have a proof of my competences in case of future employment prospects. That is something that no one can argue with.

I chose mechanical engineering as I think it gives me the best base. Unfortunately studies here look a bit different than in US for example. We do not have elective and core classes. Your only option is specialization which you can pick after 3rd year. Here is the list of the courses that my program has (it is my translation so some of the names may look a bit odd). Could you take a look at it and tell me your opinion?

SEM 1

- Algebra with geometry
- Analysis I
- Engineering Physics
- Engineering Graphics
- IT
- Materials I
- Mechanics I

SEM 2

- Analysis II
- Electrotechnics
- IT II
- Mechanics II
- Thermodynamics I
- Strength of construction I
- CAD I

SEM 3

- Electronics
- Mechanics of fluids I
- Basics of Automation and Control I
- Basics of machine construction I
- Thermodynamics II
- Vibrations
- Computational methods
- Manufacturing techniques I
- Strength of construction II
- CAD II

SEM 4

- Economics
- Basics of machine construction II
- IT III
- Mechanics of fluids II
- Finite element method
- Basics of Automation and Control II
- Manufacturing techniques II
- Strength of construction III
- CAD III
- CAD/CAM/CAE I

SEM 5

- Environmental protection
- Basics of machine construction III
- Theory of thermal machines
- Heat transfer
- Reliability and safety
- Basics of machine construction IV
- Basics of machine construction V
- Technology
- Strength of thin walled machine construction
- Control in techniques
- Energy technologies

SEM 6

- Energy sources and processing
- Energy management
- Physics
- Biomechanics
- Basics of machine construction VI
- Aerodynamics
- Sensors
- Marketing

SPECIALIZATION (OPTIONAL)

1. Robotics

- Basics of robotics
- Theory of signals and systems
- Microprocessors
- Robotic propulsion

2. Aeronautics (which seems to be also interesting)

- Flight mechanics
- Avionics
- Aircraft design
- Aircraft propulsion

Offline aLo

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Re: Dramatic career change - please help
« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2014, 03:40:15 AM »
Hi there. I changed my faculty after 2 years of managment studies for robotics (where i come from it is called sth like automatic and robotics but it doesn't matter). I think your choice is concentrated too much around mechanical engineering as someone above already said. I will copypaste some of my subjects here (warning! their names can be strange since i have to use translator for them)
electrical engineering and electronics
logic and computing
power electronics
object-oriented programming
signal theory
Drives and controls fluid
Electric drives of machines and robots

I think you may suffer from lack of more electronic-oriented subjects since you are architect but i'm a beginner also so i may be wrong.

Sorry for my terrible English

Offline jkerns

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Re: Dramatic career change - please help
« Reply #4 on: August 08, 2014, 06:11:51 PM »

I chose mechanical engineering as I think it gives me the best base. Unfortunately studies here look a bit different than in US for example. We do not have elective and core classes. Your only option is specialization which you can pick after 3rd year. Here is the list of the courses that my program has (it is my translation so some of the names may look a bit odd). Could you take a look at it and tell me your opinion?

Looks like a mechanical engineering curriculum  ;)

As long as you don't feel that there is too much repeat of your architecture background, and that's what you want to do, then there is no reason not to.

Is there an option for a graduate degree instead of a second bachelors degree? (You would probably have to pick up several classes to fill prerequisites - that would be the down side.)

Whatever degree you end up with, there will be a lot of "on the job" learning - my original degree was in mechanical engineering back in the day when you used punch cards and Fortran IV for programming (and mechanical engineers got a single two credit hour class in "programming"). But, by the time I left industry I was writing control system software in C.
I get paid to play with robots - can't beat that with a stick.

http://www.ltu.edu/engineering/mechanical/bachelor-science-robotics-engineering.asp

 


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