What Jobs Can I Get with a Mechanical Engineering Degree?

What Jobs Can I Get with a Mechanical Engineering Degree

If you are looking to graduate with a mechanical engineering degree, or if you have already graduated with one, then chances are that you want to explore your options for the jobs that you can get after graduation.

Thankfully, there are a vast number of different jobs that are available for graduates of mechanical engineering ranging from automotive engineer to aerospace engineer, and so many other choices in between. 

Learn more about what jobs you can get with a mechanical engineering degree. There are quite a lot and each one differs in the specific skills and knowledge that is needed to enter in. 

Choosing a Job with your Mechanical Engineering Degree

What is a Mechanical Engineer?

A mechanical engineer is an individual who is responsible for a myriad of duties. Not only are they tasked with researching and testing different types of mechanical devices and machines, but they are also in charge of developing, designing, and building these machines and devices.

Those who graduate with a mechanical engineering degree will find themselves equipped with the skills that are required in order to work a variety of different jobs. Due to mechanical engineering being one of the broadest in terms of skills amongst the other engineering fields, most graduates can find work in almost any industry they choose.

Some common duties of a mechanical engineer include designing different types of machines that produce power as well as designing machines which will utilize power to function. The latter may include things such as systems such as those used for refrigeration.

Because of the wide range of skills that mechanical engineering graduates hold, they can find work in a wide number of fields. A few of these such fields will be discussed shortly and we will give a short summary of what each job entails.

Aerospace Engineer

Mechanical engineers may find work as an aerospace engineer. In this job, they will be working on various aircraft and other machines that find their home in the sky.

Working on the development of craft such as airplanes is common for aerospace engineers, but they can also be found working on things such as missiles and launch pads.

Spacecraft and satellites are also something that aerospace engineers work on from their inception through to development and use. If you have ever dreamed of developing and designing the next generation of spaceships then you may want to become an aerospace engineer.

Putting your mechanical engineering degree to use and becoming an aerospace engineer will also grant you the option of developing new types of weapon systems that can be used by the military. Aerospace engineers may come up with new types of missiles or fighter jets that can be used by the military during wartime.

Aside from designing and creating new forms of these previously mentioned machines, aerospace engineers are also able to evaluate crafts that has already been created. Aspects such as the maneuverability and speed of these crafts may be improved upon, as well as their rate of climb and take-off distance.

Finally, aerospace engineers will also work to improve the overall efficiency of aircraft by reducing the amount of fuel that is consumed and changing out materials that are used. Creating and implementing new safety and security features are also the responsibilities of aerospace engineers.

Aerospace engineers make quite a good salary ranging from around $80,000 a year up into the 6-figures depending on the company you are working for and the work that you are performing within said company. 

It is a steady job that is always in demand, and there are many chances for promotion and pay increase as tenure and experience grow.

Automotive Engineer

Automotive engineering is another great job that those with a mechanical engineering degree can find themselves in. As an automotive engineer, you will find yourself performing many of the same duties of an aerospace engineer, albeit with automobiles and other land-based vehicles.

Designing and developing new models of cars, while constantly improving on current designs is the duty of an automotive engineer. They can do this in a number of different ways, but the most common way of performing their tasks is through the use of computer-aided design software or CAD.

Not only will automotive engineers be doing these types of tasks, but they will also be responsible for writing up reports for different aspects of the industry. This includes the cost of materials, when deadlines are due, and what kind of challenges are posed by the project. 

Working as an automotive engineer you will also find yourself working closely with other types of engineers who specialize in industrial plants and management, as well as many other disciplines.

In terms of salary, this is also a great career choice. Seeing salaries on an average of around $70,000 with chances of pay increase and rise in position as your experience grows, fresh graduates of mechanical engineering may see this job as quite appealing.

Marine Engineer

Our third pick on this list is a marine engineer. This is another great job that mechanical engineering graduates can look into. We have gone over jobs that deal with land and air vehicles, and marine engineers round out the trio by working on water vessels.

Just as with the other two, the job of a marine engineer is to design and improve upon current designs of water vessels. Aside from this, they will work to create new types of mechanical systems that can be used in water vessels like boats and submarines.

This includes making new and more efficient means of propulsion, as well as making more effective pumps and engines for said watercraft.

The average pay for a marine engineer sits around $73,000, which is very respectable. Any fresh graduates who are interested in a career in improving and creating marine vessels should look into this as a career choice.

Materials Engineer

One of the more obscure jobs that a mechanical engineering degree holder can find themselves in, materials engineers actually hold quite an important role in terms of a project overall.

As a materials engineer, you can expect to be responsible for selecting the best materials and combination of materials for the project you are working on. Not only that, but you will be tasked with testing these materials and ensuring that they hold up against various external factors.

Materials engineers are also responsible for designing and testing prototypes for various designs and builds. Aside from this, they are also the ones who are responsible for researching new and innovative ways that they can improve the process of manufacturing by reducing the wear and degradation that machinery and materials may experience.

Those who are working this job are also in charge of checking the overall quality of certain materials and products that are to be used, and ensuring that these materials and products meet the quality standards of the project.

Materials engineers can expect salaries around $68,000 per year, with chances for an increase as more experience is gained. This is a great career for mechanical engineering degree holders who would like to perform more of a quality assurance role.

Maintenance Engineer

Lastly, we have maintenance engineers. This type of engineer is responsible for creating and evaluating maintenance strategies that can be implemented in various mechanical systems.

By checking the safety of systems while also ensuring that they remain stable, maintenance engineers are able to perform maintenance and upkeep that can keep these systems and projects up and running.

Aside from the obvious job of performing repairs and maintenance, maintenance engineers are also in charge of making sure that spare parts and equipment are readily available for use. Estimating the cost of these tools and repairs and recording them is another job of a maintenance engineer.

For this career, expect to see a salary of around $65,000. If you enjoy repairing and fixing various types of machinery, then this job may be the perfect one for you.


These are just a few of the different careers that a mechanical engineering degree holder may find themselves working in. While each varies quite a lot, they are all very important to daily lives and each is to be appreciated.

For those who enjoy working on and designing various types of vehicles, then either aerospace, automotive, or marine engineer may be the best job choice for you. For those who enjoy more of a managerial role maintenance and materials engineer could be the best pick.

Those who hold a mechanical engineering degree will find that there are many other jobs available other than those listed here. Almost every industry and field has a role that a mechanical engineer can fill. 

Jonathan Holmes

Jonathan Holmes is a writer for HKS Siblab, an education and business blog. He has a MSc in Cyber Security & Digital Forensics from the University of Hertfordshire and has been working in the cyber security industry since 2010. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, playing guitar and spending time with his family.

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