What Jobs in Engineering are Best For Former Military?

EngineeringMany veterans returning from the front lines want to know what jobs in engineering are best for former military to create a smooth transition into civilian life again. In actuality, any engineering specialty would be a great fit for military veterans depending on their individual interests. Being in the military develops excellent technical skills that engineering jobs require. Veterans typically have advanced problem-solving abilities that can be used to improve system design processes in engineering and increase efficiency. Engineers not only earn respect in our society, but they’re also given a sizable income to match. In fact, nine out of Forbes’ top 10 highest starting salaries are in engineering specialties. Below we’ll discuss some of the best and most lucrative engineering jobs that will allow you to utilize your former military skills.

Aerospace Engineer

Aerospace engineers work to create efficient designs for new airplanes, rockets, satellites, missiles, and other flying systems. After designing their aircraft in compliance with engineering principles, aerospace engineers will test their prototypes and oversee the manufacture process. Former military often specialize in developing new technologies for use in aviation and national defense systems to continue protecting our citizens. Aerospace engineers can work for design firms, manufacturing companies, private corporations, and government agencies. Aerospace engineering leads to an average annual salary of $107,700.

Engineering Manager

Engineering management can be a great fit for former military officers seeking to bring their leadership skills into planning, coordinating, and directing activities in engineering companies. Engineering managers are given the responsibility of leading research on new products, ensuring the soundness of development tactics, budgeting for projects, hiring new engineers, and supervising team members. Most work in offices, but time will also be spent in the industrial production plant, construction site, or laboratory being used. Engineering managers are well-compensated with an average yearly wage of $122,810.

Petroleum Engineer

Petroleum engineers specialize in finding new methods for extracting oil and natural gas from below our Earth’s surface to fuel our energy consumption needs. Petroleum engineers often work on teams with geologists to discover effective drilling methods, design new drilling equipment, and survey wells used to force out oil. Since former military are used to traveling the world, working as a petroleum engineer and spending time at various drilling sites is an easier transition. Not only is demand in petroleum engineering skyrocketing by 26 percent, but the average annual wage has soared to $147,520.

Mechanical Engineer

In one of the field’s broadest sub-specialties, mechanical engineers are working hard to design, develop, build, and evaluate mechanical devices of all kinds. Mechanical engineers are given the task of analyzing society’s problems and using computer-aided design software to create a feasible solution. They can oversee the manufacture of anything from medical equipment and electric generators to vehicles and weaponry for active duty military. In exchange for designing better mechanically functioning systems, mechanical engineers are given a mean annual wage of $87,140.

Related Resource: International Civil Aviation Organization

Overall, the military provides unparalleled hands-on training in the technical skills necessary to succeed in engineering. Although military experience may be enough for some entry-level jobs, obtaining a bachelor’s or master’s degree in your chosen engineering specialty will bolster your credentials for switching from combat to construction. In addition to these jobs in engineering that are best for former military, you could also consider other engineering branches like civil, electrical, biomedical, architectural, environmental, chemical, computer, and structural.