Career Prospects of a Mechanical Engineering Graduate
As the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0) rapidly gains momentum, the adoption of digital technology and automation have transformed workforce trends. Many jobs are expected to become obsolete within the next few years. Yet, mechanical engineering remains significantly relevant and continues to be in high demand with lucrative salaries. Here’s why.
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What is Mechanical Engineering?
Mechanical engineering is a diverse field of study that focuses on the design, research, construction, and performance of mechanical systems using physics, material science, engineering, and mathematics.
A brief history of electrical engineering
The concept of mechanical engineering and its application has existed as early as the medieval period. However, important breakthroughs, such as the invention of the pendulum clock, only occurred during the 17th century in England and Europe.
As instruments of industrialization, machine tools invented during the 19th century prompted the emergence of a separate field within engineering. Following that, the Institute of Mechanical Engineers, the first professional society for mechanical engineers, was formed in the United Kingdom in 1847.
What do Mechanical Engineers do?
Mechanical engineers are in charge of analyzing key issues, designing mechanical systems, developing prototypes, and overseeing the production of operational mechanical devices and machines. They play significant roles in many industries such as aerospace, automotive, biotechnology, electronics, pharmaceuticals, oil and gas, and more.
With a thorough understanding of the fundamental concepts combined with creativity and analytical skills, mechanical engineers provide solutions and transform innovative ideas into reality.
Why study Mechanical Engineering?
Here are a few reasons why you should pursue a career in mechanical engineering and how it can brighten your future.
a. High income
Mechanical engineers are highly paid and enjoy plenty of room for career advancements due to the complex nature of the engineering field and the increasing demand for skilled professionals to meet global trends.
b. An extensive range of career options
There is a broad range of specialisations to choose from depending on your interests and ambitions. Many industries, including companies in the government and private sectors, are constantly looking for skilled mechanical engineers. Potential career options include working in industries like aerospace, automotive, biomedical, manufacturing, pharmaceutical, and more.
c. Job security
Mechanical engineers are not only well paid but highly sought after. In fact, industries are struggling with a shortage of skilled mechanical engineers as many people still lack understanding of what mechanical engineers do. Thus, mechanical engineering graduates would not face many difficulties securing jobs and obtaining high salaries.
d. Global opportunities
Mechanical engineers are highly sought-after in every country to design new products and improve current infrastructures. Therefore, mechanical engineering graduates can pursue an international career pathway to build their careers.
e. Contribute to the age of technological innovation
In this ever-evolving world, mechanical engineers play a crucial role in developing new technologies to improve lives and meet people’s needs. As artificial intelligence reshapes the way technology works, mechanical engineers are charged with designing and developing new machines to adapt to the dynamic customer demands. With that you can be part of the force that impacts modern society and changes lives.
Who should study Mechanical Engineering?
Selecting the right course can be daunting, but fret not! Here are a few things to help you discover if mechanical engineering is the right course for you.
a. You love technology
You are fascinated by how modern technology reshapes the world and daily life. If so, you may want to be a part of the innovative drive that makes a difference in technological advancements.
b. You are constantly trying to get things done efficiently
You will definitely enjoy studying mechanical engineering if you are someone who constantly searches for the most efficient way to get things done. As a mechanical engineer, it will be your responsibility to provide solutions to complex problems and improve lives.
c. You are determined to learn and improve
Studying mechanical engineering is not easy as it involves putting a great deal of physics, chemistry, mathematics, and technical skills into practice. You may struggle with producing fresh ideas and design failures. However, you are eager to learn from mistakes and hardships to improve.
d. You are a team player
In this field, it is inevitable for you to work with other professionals such as your fellow engineering colleagues, designers, and contractors to produce thoughtfully designed products. Hence, you have to be open-minded, open to communication, learn to build trust among your team members, and value each other’s strengths.
e. You are good at problem-solving and critical thinking
As a mechanical engineer, you will often face problems when developing a product. As such, you have to be creative and flexible to solve problems, even when you are stressed out. The ability to think critically under pressure will put you at a great advantage when working in a dynamic industry.
Mechanical Engineering jobs in the industry scope
As a mechanical engineering graduate, you can pursue a professional career in various sectors.
Here are a few examples:
Aerospace engineering focuses on developing aircraft, spacecraft, missiles, satellites, and mechanical systems for national defence. It consists of two overlapping branches – aeronautical and astronautical engineering.
Also known as automobile engineering, automotive engineering is a subdivision of vehicle engineering that designs and manufactures different automobiles. It involves intensive research and direct application of mathematical models.
Manufacturing engineers research and develop methods to maximise efficiency when producing excellent and economically competitive products.
d. Mechatronic and Robotic
The robotics and mechatronics sector is the intersection where electrical, mechanical, and computer engineering meet. You will have the opportunity to design control systems to develop devices and programs that boost efficiency and automation.
e. Oil & Gas
Oil and gas engineering is a branch of petroleum engineering. Engineers in this sector are responsible for developing reliable machines and tools such as valves, turbines, and pipelines. Besides that, they also search for crude oil and natural gas reservoirs.
f. Quality Assurance
In quality assurance, engineers review products or programs before its launch to detect and fix bugs to ensure design quality and prevent defects.
Mechanical Engineering salary
Based on SalaryExpert’s survey data collected from employers and anonymous employees in Malaysia, the average salary of a mechanical engineer in Malaysia is RM128,280 per year, excluding an average bonus of RM 4,477. In addition to that, the estimated income is expected to increase 23% over the next five years.
Fresh graduate mechanical engineer salary in Malaysia
An entry-level mechanical engineer with one to three years of experience earns an average salary of RM90,514 per year.
What is the career path for a Mechanical Engineer?
To pursue a degree in mechanical engineering, you will need to meet the minimum requirements below:
- GCE A-Levels: 2Es inclusive of Mathematics and Physics, or
- STPM: 2Cs inclusive of Mathematics and Physics with a minimum GP of 2.0, or
- UEC: 5Bs inclusive of Mathematics and Physics, or
- Diploma / Foundation Studies: Pass with a minimum CGPA of 2.00
In addition to that, local students must achieve at least Band 3 in the Malaysian University English Test (MUET).
As for international students, you must pass Band 5.5 in The International English Language Testing System (IELTS), score a minimum of 46 marks (IBT) or 454 marks (PBT) in TOEFL, or attain a minimum of 51 points in the Pearson English Test.
Upon completing your Malaysian Certificate of Education, or Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM), you can enrol into a pre-university (STPM, A-Level, etc.) or Foundation in Science programme. After that, you can proceed to a Mechanical Engineering Degree. On the other hand, you may pursue a Diploma in Mechanical Engineering and enter the second year of degree upon completion.
Alternatively, you can join the workforce in various industries and businesses in the public and
Entry-level positions do not require licensure. However, acquiring it later on in your career may contribute to career advancement and allow higher levels of independence. Licensed professional engineers (PE) can oversee other engineers and handle project sign-offs. To do so, you must have at least 3 years of practical working experience and pass the Board of Engineers Malaysia’s Professional Assessment Examination.
Enrolling in a graduate research degree would be a great option if you are interested in research. A Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is needed if you want to obtain an academic position in the engineering faculty in higher education and participate in research and development programs. Besides being involved in academia, one can also be part of policy-making in the public sector and private research projects and development.
Note that different institutions will have different entry requirements that you will need to fulfil.
Is mechanical engineering a good career in Malaysia?
As of today, a total of 16,1312 engineers and 14,314 professional engineers are registered with the Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM). Talent Corporation Malaysia (TalentCorp) stated that more than 1000 engineers are needed every year to meet industry demands.
Malaysia’s rapidly evolving infrastructure and the increasing demand for mechanical engineers create numerous career opportunities and salary advancements. So yes, mechanical engineering is a good career in Malaysia.
Mechanical Engineering graduate programmes study in Malaysia
At UOW Malaysia KDU, our Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering with Honours program equips students with the foundations of physics and material science to design, construct, and operate various mechanical systems. We aim to ensure that students are adaptable to the dynamic technological advancements and competitive global industry.
In summary, pursuing a mechanical engineering degree opens doors to a wide range of career opportunities. Playing a significant role in various industries as creative thinkers, problem solvers, and creators, mechanical engineering is a dynamic and highly-rewarding career that allows one to work in an exciting field to expand the boundaries of modern technology.
Should you have any queries about our program, get in touch with us for assistance or to find out more!