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Old April 6th, 2008, 06:37 PM   #21
94transam25th
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Thanls 84 Scrambler thats some pretty good advice, and i'm also pretty good in statistics... I will be doing a paper on my major in the next few weeks and need to interview someone in the field i'm choosing... Would it be possible for me to interview you over pm?
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Old April 6th, 2008, 06:40 PM   #22
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You are on the right track. Energy is and will continue to be a very stable employment area. Over the next 5 years, there will be a HUGE number of people retiring from utility and energy related jobs. We estimate that currently around 60-65% of our work force will be eligible to retire in the next 5 years. You can either pursue the engineering side of the energy business, or the financial side. A financial engineering degree would kick ass. If you are good with the statistical analysis, you could do well. Learn the risk management, statistics, options, finance, etc... With 2-3 years of training and the willingness to work a rotating shift (24x7 operation), you can find jobs paying $100k base + up to 40% bonus or more depending on the location. It isn't for everyone because it is high stress and you are on your toes 12 hours straight. But, the pay is great and the education you get pays off as well.

Oh, yeah. I have a BA in econ and business management with an MBA from MSU. I handle the wholesale energy transactions for a municipal utility. I've been in the business going on 13 years now and did the rotating shift job for 8 years. I'm now in a supervisor role. Everyone above me is closing in on their 25 year anniversary or more, so there is plenty of room for advancement currently in the business.
I've done some level of statistical and/or GIS related work as it relates to the appraisal profession for 20 years. unfortunately, it seems that the utilities only like to hire entry level/intern's in the GIS arena. :/

A former colleague of mine worked for DTE's tax compliance department for a while, but found the atmosphere too close to 'government' type work (e.g. too slow of paced for change - but this was about 10 years ago)

in about 5-6 years or perhaps sooner I'll be looking again, my current boss, who happens to be a former boss and recruited me away, intends to retire in 6 to 7 years... if you're still around hire me? :tonka:
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Old April 6th, 2008, 06:49 PM   #23
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I'm a mechanical engineer in the govt. systems division at Rockwell Collins an aviation electronics company. I graduated from MTU in May 2007 with my BS in Mech Engineering. Because of my internship, I was by them fairly quickly. All in all I like it, however I'm finding that I might want to go back for a degree in electricial engineering because of the company and the projects I'm working on. They say do what you love and you'll never work a day in your life; I'm doing what I love, I haven't worked a day since I got hired.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 06:59 PM   #24
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Fire/Rescue
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Old April 6th, 2008, 07:02 PM   #25
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Thanls 84 Scrambler thats some pretty good advice, and i'm also pretty good in statistics... I will be doing a paper on my major in the next few weeks and need to interview someone in the field i'm choosing... Would it be possible for me to interview you over pm?
That would be fine. I would be willing to do that. Even if you don't get into the energy business, a background in statistical analysis and finance (plain jane or Fin engineering) will get you in a lot of doors. No matter if the economy is growing or shrinking, someone has to be smart enough to know how to measure that stuff. It's all a shirt and tie type job, but it beats the feast or famine careers that many people pursue. That is one reason I like where I am. No matter what happens to the economy, people are still going to use electricity. Even if the local economy sucks, we can sell our extra power on the market to other areas that need it. There are jobs out there like this that are mostly insulated from the economy.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 07:07 PM   #26
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I've done some level of statistical and/or GIS related work as it relates to the appraisal profession for 20 years. unfortunately, it seems that the utilities only like to hire entry level/intern's in the GIS arena. :/

A former colleague of mine worked for DTE's tax compliance department for a while, but found the atmosphere too close to 'government' type work (e.g. too slow of paced for change - but this was about 10 years ago)

in about 5-6 years or perhaps sooner I'll be looking again, my current boss, who happens to be a former boss and recruited me away, intends to retire in 6 to 7 years... if you're still around hire me? :tonka:
Detroit Edison reeks of slow, tedious people. I worked for an unregualted subsidiary of DTE for 5 years. I could not believe how slow the parent company worked. It drove me nuts dealing with people that took a piece of data and entered it into some system. They had no idea where it came from or what it was used for or even who used it. I fought that every day for 5 years. I am one of those people that constantly asks why something is done a certain way. At one point we were entering data from our sales into 11 different systems. They wondered why the data entry was full of errors. When I finaly got done tracking down data paths, we eliminated many outaded and unused systems and created a front end system that handled the data after we entered it once. Amazingly, if a person only has to enter a number once, they normally get it right. Expecting it 11 times in a row was absurd. :tonka: I don't miss that place. He was right, it is very much like government there.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 07:17 PM   #27
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Detroit Edison reeks of slow, tedious people. I worked for an unregualted subsidiary of DTE for 5 years. I could not believe how slow the parent company worked. It drove me nuts dealing with people that took a piece of data and entered it into some system. They had no
idea where it came from or what it was used for or even who used it. I fought that every day for 5 years. I am one of those people that constantly asks why something is done a certain way. At one point we were entering data from our sales into 11 different systems. They wondered why the data entry was full of errors. When I finaly got done tracking down data paths, we eliminated many outaded and unused systems and created a front end system that handled the data after we entered it once. Amazingly, if a person only has to enter a number once, they normally get it right. Expecting it 11 times in a row was absurd. :tonka: I don't miss that place. He was right, it is very much like government there.

one of OU's Stats/QMM professor's is an employee at DTE... she sees the potential for growth/change now, but as an example she is currently performing mass levels of statistical regression analysis using multiple excel spreadsheets instead of a proper database/analysis/stats package due to the red-tape involved in getting "programmer" hours allocated in a timely fashion to stand up a simple reporting tool.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 07:30 PM   #28
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graphic design. been an art director for the last 15 years. basically I take peoples dumb ideas, throw them in the trash and make them something that looks like it wasn't shit out of an ape's ass. "i did this at home on my computer"...."yeah, it looks like it"
I have done a ton of kewl stuff over the years for companies like the red wings, thyssen steel, Detroit Grand Prix, 106.7, WCSX, General mills, Kroger, Buddy's Pizza and a billion others I can't even remember.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 07:38 PM   #29
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I'm also at OU, my major is Industrial Engineering.....


YOu said you were good in math and statistics, so that might be somthing to consider.


I was a Mechanical Engineering student before, but then switched for a few reasons, one being its a lot harder to outsource an IE than it is an ME. Except for Research and developement positions, but those aren't that abundant. And with an IE Degree you can also work in the health care industry.


FYI, Engineers for GM in Mexico make less than 20K USD a year. Needless to say Design type of jobs are working their ways out of the states.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 08:27 PM   #30
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I'm an automotive designer. Currently designing engine parts.

I have a 2 year degree in drafting.

I like it OK but after 18 years I'm starting to bored with it.

The job outlook for the future is horrible. More and more of the design work in getting outsourced over seas.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 08:37 PM   #31
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I'm an automotive designer. Currently designing engine parts.

I have a 2 year degree in drafting.

I like it OK but after 18 years I'm starting to bored with it.

The job outlook for the future is horrible. More and more of the design work in getting outsourced over seas.
Where did you get your degree?
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Old April 6th, 2008, 08:38 PM   #32
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Automotive Electrical Engineer.

I'm not as bleak about outsourcing as some of the others. but I work in first surfaces, we have a lot more direct contact with the OEMs. I've seen several suppliers try and fail to outsource main application engineering, doesn't work well.

You need to adapt, though. We have engineering all over the place. Some of my job, I'm a typical embedded systems engineer, some I'm a hardware team manager. So I have a couple guys in mexico that report to me, and work with a few in China as well. I work with GM on 4 continents.

13 years in the business. Plenty interesting, and you get to visit all the 2nd world countries...

BSEE from Oakland Univeristy, most of a MSEE as well, but never got around to finishing it. MS doesn't make much difference in my field.

Last edited by Haggar; April 6th, 2008 at 08:42 PM.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 08:49 PM   #33
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Medical Electrical Engineer.

I'm still a student at Kettering University, but I have an internship with Stryker Instruments (in Kalamazoo, MI).

I LOVE IT.

I started as an Industrial Engineer, but didn't feel challenged enough, so I went to Mechanical Engineer. Same story there, so I went with Electrical.

It's medical, we have had 20% growth for the past 20 some years, and we're still growing. There isn't much of a job concern there, which is nice.

Another perk I've found about electrical, is that most people don't have as firm of a grasp on it. (If you don't understand mechanical, you can still "make it work" most times, but, with electrical, you need to know what you're doing most of the time).

This means that you can always find side jobs and such helping others with electrical stuff.

Just my $0.02
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Old April 6th, 2008, 08:54 PM   #34
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Nursing School, currently a nursing assistant and beaumont RO
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Old April 6th, 2008, 08:57 PM   #35
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I work in advanced controls at GM; our "sister" group designs new hardware/technology and we get to write and calibrate the software to run it. My job is very cool, but there are not many others that offer the freedom I have. Once I get assigned a new project, I am responsible to validate production feasibility in a compressed timeframe. Think of a full development schedule from start to finish - and you're responsible for everything, from getting the hardware, specing the controls system, finding companies to test for you, repairing failed hardware, well, you see where I'm going with this.

Sometimes it is complex, as in an entire powertrain; sometimes it can be one or two components that need research and development. Very rewarding.


That being said, if I had everything to do over again, I wouldn't choose automotive engineering as a career choice. As I get older, I notice more and more that I develop other priorities. In hindsight, I think I should've become an RN based on my feelings today. Sure, my job is great - but I am stuck for better or worse in Metro Detroit and I am limited as to what I can offer an engineering firm outside of the automotive field. That's got me trapped here until I can save enough to retire or win the lottery.

If I were an RN, I would have a much better shot at living where I want (big priority for me at 39) and I could have the added gratification of helping people.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 09:36 PM   #36
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BSEE from Oakland Univeristy, most of a MSEE as well, but never got around to finishing it. MS doesn't make much difference in my field.



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That being said, if I had everything to do over again, I wouldn't choose automotive engineering as a career choice. As I get older, I notice more and more that I develop other priorities. In hindsight, I think I should've become an RN based on my feelings today. Sure, my job is great - but I am stuck for better or worse in Metro Detroit and I am limited as to what I can offer an engineering firm outside of the automotive field. That's got me trapped here until I can save enough to retire or win the lottery. .
Although Scoots is in a field that isn't shrinking nearly as quickly as others he is right, its very hard for the average (scoots might notbe average) engineer in the detroit area to the shake the automotive stigma and relo out of state in other engineering disciplines.

Alternative fuels is huge in auto or energy, etc.

You need to look at the types of opportunities out there that are going to last. If you are interested in engineering look into civil, healthcare/medical devices, Government contracts (Defense and Armor still seem pretty strong), etc.

The key is to determine what you want to do? Work on computers, sell stuff, be an engineer, etc. Then pick a good field where you can live in many places and you know it should stay in decent demand.

Last edited by kickstand; April 6th, 2008 at 09:40 PM.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 09:53 PM   #37
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Maybe for hiring it, but at my level for engineering, there's nothing that I can take in a class that would be applicable to my job that would actually be at a level that I could use. An engineering MS degree is a couple math classes that I won't use and a few engineering classes which I could teach myself. Maybe some optics classes Iguess, but that'd be in a different field (mechanical.

A management degree would help, though.

If I could change now, I'd like to teach engineering/science at a HS or college level... but, well, Nigga's gotta eat..
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Old April 6th, 2008, 09:55 PM   #38
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school monday - - friday 9-5
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Old April 6th, 2008, 09:57 PM   #39
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Maybe for hiring it, but at my level for engineering, there's nothing that I can take in a class that would be applicable to my job that would actually be at a level that I could use. An engineering MS degree is a couple math classes that I won't use and a few engineering classes which I could teach myself. Maybe some optics classes Iguess, but that'd be in a different field (mechanical.

Optics would be physics.



and honestly how much of what you learned in school do you actually use.
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Old April 6th, 2008, 09:59 PM   #40
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Maybe for hiring it, but at my level for engineering, there's nothing that I can take in a class that would be applicable to my job that would actually be at a level that I could use. An engineering MS degree is a couple math classes that I won't use and a few engineering classes which I could teach myself. Maybe some optics classes Iguess, but that'd be in a different field (mechanical.

A management degree would help, though.

If I could change now, I'd like to teach engineering/science at a HS or college level... but, well, Nigga's gotta eat..
I suspect you meant to say hiring "IN". Regardless a MS is never a bad idea. You are right, for getting the job the masters is often a good selling point on a candidate or Strongly preferred by the manager. It also allows you to command a higher salary. So although you may have a job already, a masters would only help. In both promotions and salary 99% of the time.
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