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Thread: Getting Started

  1. #1
    Associate Engineer
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Aurora, Colorado

    Getting Started

    I'm a Junior in High School. I've started taking the available courses this year in engineering, and taking apart devices when I get the chances. I'm planning on getting a Major in Mechanical Engineering. But I feel like I can be doing more to get better at it. I don't often get things I can take apart, and definitely don't have enough parts to start assembling random things. I'm not too sure on my Minor either, I was thinking Electrical Engineering. I just feel like I'm not moving forward fast enough to become a pretty skilled engineer.

  2. #2
    Technical Fellow jboggs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Myrtle Beach, SC
    Congratulations on thinking ahead and on making your selections at this early point in your life. I understand your impatience to "get started" digging in to some things with your own hands. It is always a wonderful way to learn. Don't worry. You have plenty of time to become a skilled engineer. In fact, the point where you might call yourself that is still decades (not years) away. Your main job right now is to patiently learn the basics. By that I mean the academics: math, science, physics, geometry, trigonometry, algebra, etc. Eventually you'll get into kinematics, dynamics, and the like but you need the foundations first. (I feel your pain about that!)

    I could also strongly recommend that you hook up with your closest robotics team. That is one of the best ways I know for a young person to get direct experience with actual engineering projects. You'll have design challenges as a team, building and trying mechanisms to accomplish tasks with the limitations of budget and schedule that are a part of every engineer's life. Check for information on teams, leagues, and events. If your school system doesn't have a team yet, you can find out there how to find one or start one.

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