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adamdrives

Mechanical/Auto Engineering

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Hey Ya'll, I'm looking at going back to school and am curious if anyone on the boards attended a school or got a degree in mechanical or automotive engineering. Pretty much I want to take this car thing to the next level, this seems like the logical choice. I haven't really refined my list of schools but Kettering in Michigan and Clemson in SC are known to be good for getting into this field. Beyond that, I'm looking at state schools in NY that offer a ME program. I'd appreciate any advice or input. Thanks

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Let me know if you wanna talk or have questions... I am pretty fresh out of school... BSME and graduated in 2012 from Syracuse University. Passed the FE exam while in school and in about two years I can apply to take the PE exam. I have a minor in Math as well which is generally easy to get being in a engineering program already as it was only an additional two graduate level courses for me at SU.

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I just started my BS in Mechanical Engineering degree at UNC Charlotte. I chose this school because I was looking to do the same thing, take my passion for cars to the track or the performance manufacturers. They offer a concentration in Motorsports Engineering to specialize your Mechanical degree. This program is eligible after the fall semester of Sophomore year and gives you access to two buildings which are brand new and filled to the brim with modern racing, high performance vehicle tuning and building equipment. Some neat stuff is: Haas CNC, Chassis Jig, Engine Dyno, Water Tunnel, and a ton more. I am ecstatic to start working in those labs next year!

Check it out here:

http://motorsports.uncc.edu/

I am not sure how exactly you were looking to go back to school or how you could consolidate this program, but it is worth a glance.

IUPUI in Indianapolis also has a Motorsports engineering program, but it is badly underfunded, unlike UNCC's which is well funded and well staffed.

Good Luck with your search!

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Been out of school for some time now... only advice i would give is don't let the major you pick when you're young limit your aspirations or ambition.  Virtually any engineering field can have automotive applications.  I went to college and got a EE, then later, a grad degree, but I don't really work in that area; been doing s/w pgming for last 17 yrs or so; still learn new stuff almost every day.  Follow your interests where ever that takes you; sometimes you have to be pragmatic and practical, but don't lose your passion and you'll be fine.  Take lots of different classes, not just ones in your major, and take at least one s/w programming class! 

BTW i worked and lived in SE MI for about ten years (in the 90s); Kettering is a very good school but there are lots of good schools across the country.  Unless you're in the top 0.1% academically a big-name school is over-rated IMO.

Good luck!

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I graduated in 2013 from Rochester Institute of Technology with my BSME/MET. In my experience I would advise you to focus on Mechanical Engineering and then take your technical electives in the direction of automotive. As someone else mentioned, you don't want to limit yourself to just automotive when it comes down to it but you're on the right track with the idea of an ME degree. 

I have a lot of friends with non specialized degrees (Chemical, Electrical, and Mechanical Engineering mostly) working in the auto industry, as they tend to recruit from R.I.T. pretty heavily. Off the top of my head I know people at Cummins, Borg Warner, Caterpillar, Honda, Toyota, Briggs & Straton, and I'm sure I'm missing some. I spent 2 years at University of Pittsburgh and finished the last 3 (R.I.T. is a 5 year program because of required co-op) in Rochester. In my experience there is nothing like a private school education as they seem to really care a lot more about developing the students rather than their own agendas with research and whatnot. I'm glad I transferred and loved every minute at R.I.T., and have just moved back recently for a new position locally while pursuing my MBA.

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Wow guys, thanks for all the responses. I really appreciate everyone who took the time to post. Good to know that I can focus on an ME degree and specialize as I go along. ME degrees and programs seem to be more widely offered, so that's awesome to know. I would definitely like to focus on the performance aspects of automotive engineering, that program at UNC sounds incredible. This is a really big step for me as I haven't focused at all in science or math since high school (I'm 24). But I pretty much decided this is my dream and I have to pursue it. I'm still pretty far from even knowing what schools I want to apply to but all this information has been really helpful. I really appreciate it! 

 

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Something I just remembered - A lot of my friends that got into automotive fields were involved with automotive club activities like Formula and Baja. This is something you should REALLY look into. You may want to gear your curriculum toward automotive, and that's fine...but when it comes time to apply for jobs you will look a hell of a lot more interesting with hands on experience from those racing clubs. I had 4 close friends on Formula and one works at Honda, another Toyota, a third at Tesla, and the fourth one (a girl named Alice, don't get me started she's hott as shit and possibly the one that got away) moved to Germany for a year and a half to do her masters in engineering while working for both Porsche and Aston Martin.

Something to think about.

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Agreed ^ RIT FSAE is a colt too... and I mean that in the best way possible. Their team is really tough to get into and is a top 5 team every year.

Mech. Engr. is broad and won't limit you in the job world. I took the automotive courses they offered and I was on our FSAE team, and my senior capstone project involved cars; however, I have ZERO automotive engr. opportunities in my immediate area and I don't want to move currently to get one...

There are great Automotive Tech. degrees as well to look at... you don't need a 4 year fancy degree from a "name" school to get involved in the auto industry.

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Have an BS in ME from RPI and got an MS from UofM while working in the industry.

Single biggest help was FSAE and working on my own car.

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BS/MS MechE. Automotive is getting really interesting nowadays...but aerospace (helicopters) is pretty fun too. My advice is to learn the theory well in addition to the practical application of it. The best engineers can do both. Best of luck!

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I got my BSME from University of Maryland in 2012. I started working for Volvo/Mack trucks immediately following school. Kettering is a great school but I'd be worried about being too specialized before even starting your career. I worked on UMD's FSAE team for one year which helped me start in the automotive business.

We have been getting a large number of interns/co-ops from Clemson, and their program seems to be really good. Also look at WVU they do exhaust emissions research. I wouldn't worry too much about going to a specialty school though, FSAE is competitive enough to get you interviews. 

The automotive world is also full of suppliers. I have an FSAE friend who designs washer fluid nozzles for vehicles. He had the CAD model for both the C7 corvette and NSX before the magazines had anything. There are thousands of ways to get into the industry, there's manufacturing, software writers, ect. 

Finally you might want to look at where these automotive jobs would be located. There's a lot of development in Michigan, would you want to live there? There's manufacturing spread all over though. I was lucky in that Volvo/Mack was located only an hour from where I grew up. 

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