What Do Manufacturing Engineering Technology Graduates Do? Can you imagine applying your creative problem-solving skills to make manufacturing at companies far more efficient?
Would you like to be part of the design and operation of integrated systems like computer networks, robots, numerical controllers, machine tools, and materials-handling equipment?
Are you interested in designing circuit board manufacturing processes to improve turnaround, reduce costs, and enhance product quality?
Manufacturing Engineering Technology Graduates
- Develop tools, processes, machines, and equipment to make high-quality, economically competitive products at a reasonable cost.
- Work with engineering graphics, engineering materials and mechanics, hydraulics and pneumatics, and electronics and electric power to ensure all product and system requirements are taken into account.
- Use computer-aided design or computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) equipment, robotics, and other planning tools to effectively evaluate manufacturing processes.
- Increase productivity, reduce costs, and maintain or improve the quality of a manufactured product.
- Identify opportunities or implement changes using knowledge of fabrication processes, tooling and production equipment, assembly methods, quality control standards, or product design, materials and parts.
- Provide technical expertise or support related to manufacturing.
Major Scientific Breakthroughs in Manufacturing Engineering Technology
- Lightbulbs: Electric light made companies able to institute night shifts for their employees in order to increase production rates, resulting in the development of modern machinery.
- Telephones: The telephone, patented by Alexander Graham Bell, made conducting business much quicker and more efficient.
- Assembly lines: The assembly line manufacturing technique allowed the Ford Motor Company to produce cars faster and cheaper than ever before, ultimately increasing the availability of automobiles and making transporting goods easier.
- Industrial robots: Industrial robots resembling human arms are commonly used for high-speed manufacturing assembly work, which is more cost-efficient and less prone to error than manual labor.
- 3D printing: 3D printing, which relies on CAD technology, has been used to successfully create products like surgical implants, food, and jewelry.
Areas of Employment
- Consulting firms
- Government agencies
- Healthcare organizations
- Retail companies
- Research and development firms
- Computer integrated manufacturing
- Technical customer service
- Sales and marketing
- Quality assurance
- Plant management
- Materials handling
- Industrial safety
- Business consultant
- Operations research analyst
- Information systems manager
Career Guidance Suggestions for Pre-University Students
Coursework to Consider
- Advanced algebra
- Engineering fundamentals
- Computer-aided design
- Manufacturing systems
- Quality control
- Production and operations management
- Research methods
Suggested Extracurricular Activities
- Summer programs
- Afterschool programs
- Online puzzles and games
- Online courses
- Maker faires
- Design projects
- Science centers and museums
- Professional societies like IEEE
- Problem-solving skills: determine root causes of failures using statistical methods and recommend changes in designs or processing methods.
- Interpersonal skills: be able to work in teams with commercial or industrial designers to refine product designs to increase producibility and decrease costs.
- Communication skills: effectively communicate manufacturing capabilities, production schedules, or other vital information to facilitate production processes.
- Design skills: design layout of equipment or workspaces in order to achieve maximum efficiency.
- Writing skills: prepare written documentation for new manufacturing processes or engineering procedures.
- Analytical skills: analyze the financial impacts of sustainable manufacturing processes or sustainable product manufacturing.
- Decision-making skills: consider the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Systems evaluation: identify measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
- Troubleshooting: determine causes of operating errors and decide what to do about it.
Links and Resources
- Society of Manufacturing Engineers: a nonprofit organization serving the manufacturing industry by promoting advanced manufacturing technology, developing a skilled workforce, and sharing knowledge and resources that generate solutions meeting industry demands.
- The Association for Manufacturing Excellence: the premier organization for members to explore lean thinking and other enterprise improvement methods, exchange best practices and network in order to advance their careers, and improve the overall value of their organizations.
- National Association of Manufacturers: the largest industrial trade association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states.
- The Association of Technology, Management, and Applied Engineering: a professional association with over 1,000 innovative members who share technology, management, and applied engineering ideas, research, and applications that positively impact the future.
- American Society of Certified Engineering Technicians: the only national, professional society created especially for, and administered by, engineering technicians and technologists in all engineering disciplines.
- American Society for Engineering Education: a nonprofit organization of individuals and institutions committed to furthering education in engineering and engineering technology.