How Texas Engineers Can Improve Their Continuing Education
The U.S. Bureau of Labor estimates that there will be nearly 140,000 new engineering jobs between now and 2026. This extends to all careers in engineering, regardless of niche. Not only that, but most engineering jobs have incredible growth opportunities.
Are you a Texas-based engineer who wants to continue your education? Broadening your education is the first step to a rewarding career. Read these 6 tips when getting an engineer education in Texas to ensure you get the most out of your training.
1. Add Courses and Webinars to Your Portfolio
Whether or not you’re applying for engineer jobs in Texas, regularly update your portfolio. All engineers have a portfolio that details their projects and experience. Should you add the continuing education courses and webinars you took to your portfolio? Absolutely.
The best portfolio will show more than just your past projects and experience. Your portfolio is an easy way to show the extent of your knowledge, and this extends to what you learned in your continuing education.
2. Have a Mentor
If you can, find a mentor while you’re continuing your education, if you haven’t already found one. A mentor is an experienced professional who shares their expertise with a less experienced individual (known as the mentee). You’ll gain knowledge that most students don’t have, which will help boost your career.
This can be a mutual relationship; many mentors want to improve their leadership and even their teaching skills. The mentee can satisfy this will reflect positively on the mentor’s own career.
Who can be a mentor? When you continue your education, you have a whole range of knowledgeable professors and experts at your disposal. Talk to engineering teachers and other professionals.
You can also find a mentor based on other factors, such as your dream position or your ideal place of employment. Connect with these individuals via LinkedIn or other platforms and see if they’re interested in developing a mentorship relationship.
If you can’t find a mentor, there’s still hope. Find a figure you admire, whether it’s Steve Jobs, Dean Kamen, or another notable engineer. Research this figure thoroughly. Find every interview you can and read their biography and books, if you can find them. This way, you’ll learn the tricks that these individuals learned to become successful.
3. Work in Teams
Teamwork is a vital skill in all roles, but especially in engineering. When engineers improve their ability to work as a team, they learn other vital skills such as using team-based technology and communicating complex ideas, all while maintaining professional integrity.
Because of this fact and more, just about all employers and agencies expect engineers to have exceptional teamwork skills.
Engineering teams are responsible for delivering ground-breaking technology, and that will only become more integral in the future. While you’re in college now, improve your teamwork skills and communicate your accomplishments as a team to potential employers.
For best results, find engineering courses and webinars that improve this skill.
4. Use Continued Education as a Networking Opportunity
It’s not what you know, it’s who you know. Right? This fact rings true in all industries, but especially engineering. That’s why you should network whenever you can, even during your continued education.
During your continued education, you will likely have multiple opportunities to meet others. If you can, develop close relationships with professors, and colleagues. You can also sign up for live webinars and stay in contact with the speakers.
There are also ways you can still network outside of your continued education. Attend job boards. Even if you don’t land a job, stay in touch with the employers you met.
5. Be Honest About Your Flaws
No engineer is perfect. Rather than hide your flaws, be honest about them.
This is especially true if you’re continuing your education. Find ways to improve your flaws. If you’re looking for a solution, you can find webinars and courses online that focus on specific topics and skills to improve your weak points.
Don’t be afraid to ask your colleagues for their honest input. When you accept constructive criticism, you learn things about yourself you wouldn’t know before. Take these critiques and use them to improve your flaws.
6. Seek Leadership Roles
Leadership is more important than you think. Effective engineering leaders not only support their team but you also know when to step back but can also assist with project execution. This is why the leadership skill is one of the most difficult soft skills in engineering.
In order to improve your leadership skills, you’ll have to lead a team. But this doesn’t have to be an engineering team. Take a stab at leading an informal team, such as an organization or club in another area of interest.
You can take this experience and skills to any employer. They will be more interested in how you lead the team, rather than whether or not it was an engineering team.
Continue Your Engineer Education in Texas
If you’re continuing your engineer education in Texas, these tips can help pave the way to success. However, there are other factors to consider. Texas has specific engineering board certification requirements and all engineers are advised to continue their education whenever they can.
Fortunately, this is easier than you think. There are different webinars, courses, and classes in engineering that you can take to improve your knowledge of your field. We offer all of these and more.
Are you interested in getting started but are unsure about the process? Learn more about us and how to take our courses.