National Engineering Week: February 20-26, 2022

Engineers reviewing component on a desk
Engineers reviewing component on a desk
Engineers reviewing component on a desk

National Engineering Week: February 20-26, 2022

What would our world look like without engineers? It’s almost impossible to imagine because engineers are responsible for our ability to be safe, navigate our world with relative ease, and hopefully live to a ripe old age.

The National Society of Professional Engineers

For one week each year, Kettering University Online joins with others in the industry to celebrate mechanical, electrical, industrial, chemical, computer, and civil engineers thanks to the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE). The NSPE was established in 1934 to “realize a simple but vital goal: create an inclusive, nontechnical organization dedicated to the interests of licensed professional engineers, regardless of practice area, that would protect engineers (and the public) from unqualified practitioners, build public recognition for the profession, and stand against unethical practices and inadequate compensation” (NSPE, 2022, para.1). NSPE carries this spirit through to their vision statement, for which they see “a world where the public can be confident that engineering decisions affecting their lives are made by qualified and ethically accountable professions” (NSPE, 2022, para. 4).

National Engineers Week

In 1951, NSPE founded National Engineers Week. Each year, during the last week of February, organizations and corporations across the country take action to ensure a diverse and well-educated future engineering workforce by designing activities and programs aimed at increasing understanding of, and interest in, engineering and technology careers.

The 2022 theme is “Reimagining the Possible”. Engineers of all kinds are always reimagining what they can invent or improve upon. From life-saving vaccines to safe bridges and roadways, from driverless cars to advances in healthcare and video gaming, engineers are making our world easier, safer, and more fun! One of the underlying goals of this celebratory week is to highlight how engineers make a difference in our world while promoting activities designed to inspire students, of all ages, to a career path in STEM.

Engineers reviewing designs

Celebrate Engineers!

There are so many ways to celebrate our engineers. Here are some ideas!

  • Acknowledge your engineers – spotlight them in a website, blog, or social media post
  • Create an awards banquet over a lunch hour with funny or serious awards highlighting engineers and their accomplishments
  • Support their professional development by sending them to trainings and conferences

You can also increase public dialogue about the need for engineers by:

  • Sponsoring educational initiatives in your company’s school district
  • Sponsoring engineering contests within your company’s community
  • Having a guest speaker and inviting community members to attend

Bring engineering to life for kids by:

  • Challenging them to build a toothpick or popsicle bridge
  • Showing them photos of engineering projects you admire and explaining why
  • Making a snack pulley together

A quick Google search reveals countless ways to introduce and engage kids in activities about mechanical, electrical, industrial, chemical, and civil engineering and National Engineering Week is a great time to begin.

Engineers are in Demand

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2021) notes the industry employment forecast for STEM careers includes technological advancements which are expected to support strong employment growth in professional, business and scientific services industries including computer systems and related services, as well management, scientific, and technical consulting services (2.1% and 2% projected annual employment growth from 2020-2030, respectively). Competition will be high for acquiring these positions so companies will likely place a higher priority on candidates with advanced technical knowledge, excellent interpersonal communication skills, and expert business management and financial skills. This is where Kettering University Online can help! By enrolling in one of our 100% online graduate programs, you can catapult your STEM or Mechatronics career.

Engineers in hard hats reviewing laptop

KUO Graduate Programs

If you are interested in going back to school for a graduate degree or if you are already in a STEM industry and would like to move into management, this week is also a great time to visit online.kettering.edu to check out our online graduate programs. We offer:

  • MBA
  • MS Lean Manufacturing
  • MS Operations Management
  • MS Supply Chain Management
  • MS Engineering Management
  • MS Engineering: Electrical & Computer Engineering-Advanced Mobility

Because it is National Engineering Week, following are details about our two engineering programs:

Master of Science in Engineering: Electrical & Computer Engineering -Advanced Mobility

Kettering University Online’s MS in Engineering: ECE-Advanced Mobility program placed #71 on the 2021 list of U.S. News and World Report’s rankings for Best Online Master’s in Engineering Programs. (U.S. News and World Report, 2021).

This cutting-edge, award-winning, advanced engineering degree is grounded in the philosophy of Learn Today-Use Tomorrow. With its innovative instructional design, this engineering degree equips graduates with the technical expertise to play an integral role in the development of electric and autonomous vehicles, mobile robotics, and other dynamic systems. The program also effectively supports new knowledge for mechanical engineers hoping to upskill into the world of automation and mechatronics. Think of it as providing the mechanics approach for this group of engineers. This MSE ECE program is designed specifically to meet growing demands within the automotive and advanced mobility industry, and focuses on systems essential to the future of transportation, such as:

  • Integration of electrical and computer systems for autonomous vehicles and other advanced mobility applications
  • Development of advanced mobility applications for electric, hybrid and autonomous vehicles, transportation systems, artificial intelligence and robotics as it applies to mobility
  • Design of dynamic systems that work to enhance and support autonomous functionality
  • Robotics enhanced by artificial intelligence

Master of Science in Engineering Management

If engineering management is more appealing, check out our MS Engineering Management program.

Engineers, at the beginning of their career, often focus on mastering the technical aspects and responsibilities of their job. After establishing an effective skill-set and a firm work ethic, some engineers feel ready for more – more responsibility, more variety in their daily tasks, and more of a desire to contribute to their company’s ability to achieve its strategic goals. One way to accomplish this is by becoming a manager and supervising other engineers and projects. The Master of Science Engineering Management program delivers the holistic leadership and communication skills needed to manage a high technology, cross-disciplinary team.

Engineering management lies at the intersection of applying sound engineering principles to projects and having the savvy business acumen necessary for all financial, administrative, and planning activities that support project development from conception to completion.

Engineering managers lead research and development teams working on new products, processes, or designs, or working to improve existing ones. Their work also includes creating project budgets, hiring and managing staff, preparing staff training, determining equipment needs, monitoring the building and maintenance of equipment, and creating detailed plans for reaching technical goals.

Solving Present and Future Problems

“The ideal engineer is a composite. … He is not a scientist, he is not a mathematician, he is not a sociologist or a writer. But he may use the knowledge and techniques of any or all of these disciplines in solving problems. (Doughtery, 1972, p. 33)

N.W. Dougherty, professor of civil engineering at the University of Tennessee, wrote these words in 1955. Today, our world faces even more complex problems than those of decades past. From rebuilding the country’s infrastructure, to fighting climate change, to combating water scarcity, to fighting a global pandemic, engineers, of all kinds, will certainly be challenged. These challenges demand new thinking, innovative ideas, and consistent best practices folded into an ethos of ethical, socially conscious, and sustainable solutions.

It is time to enroll in one of KUO’s programs and put your best thinking towards solving today’s most complex problems. Our knowledgeable and supportive Enrollment advisors are here to help guide your decision about which of our programs can help you to achieve your career goals. Visit online.kettering.edu for more information.

 

References:

Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2021, September 8). Employment projections: 2020-2030 summary. https://www.bls.gov/news.release/ecopro.nr0.htm

NSPE.org. (2022). NSPE: Who we are and what we do. https://www.nspe.org/membership/nspe-who-we-are-and-what-we-do

Todayinscience.org. (2021). Nathan Washington Dougherty. https://todayinsci.com/D/Dougherty_Nathan/DoughertyNathan-Quotations.htm