Aerospace Engineer – Jobs & Career Outlook

Aerospace Engineer - We need you!

You’ve completed the Millennium Falcon Lego Set a million times. You’ve rebuilt your mom’s Buick a few hundred. Now, you’ve been bitten by the flight bug and you want to know the highest paid aircraft mechanic roles?

You, my friend, could have the problem-solving skills for the big leagues.

There is no better role in the Aerospace Industry than Engineer. Yes, we would say that, but here’s something you might not know. Working with aerospace vehicles will teach you so much that it will help you develop your career far beyond that oily rag. It’s also the role with the greatest environmental impact.

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    Many wealthy institutions invest in aircraft production, and they love well rounded clever people with engineering backgrounds. Why? Because the value of these assets depends heavily on their technical status. And that’s you. Maybe.

    Aerospace Engineer

    Come with us as we explore the realities and possibilities of working as an aerospace engineer. Let us guide you through the world just a little bit and show you the places you might go to help in your decision to become one.

    At the end we will show you what the big boys earn. Those CTO’s (Chief Technical Officers), the Directors of Engineering and the VP Technical. And if you can also sell? Holy moly are you in great shape…

    Evidence-based as usual folks. We only show and not tell. If we say something, it’s because we have evidence to prove it. 

    What is Aerospace Engineering?

    Aeronautical engineering is the field of design, manufacturing, and maintenance of all flying machines. If you are not interested in going to third level education and just want to see routes into aircraft maintenance and being a mechanic, we got you over HERE.

    Airlines, MROs, and other entities are always looking for talented men and women and gender-neutral folks as apprentices. They will even pay you while you study and pay you more when you get your Airframe and/or powerplant certifications and licenses. There’s also great government support. 

    But back to here, a key word here is certification. Because most of your life will be spent within some phase of a certification journey. You see, as a scientist, you are seeking design verification and validation. But there are three pathways you will commonly see amongst most Colleges and Universities. 

    • Aeronautics
    • Astronautics
    • Propulsion

    Engineers Story

    And you can see where these three areas might cover the gamut of learning skills. You can read a whole lot more from one of the giants, Embry Riddle. But you should start first by focusing on what area you want to specialize in.

    We are also aware that the military is a wonderful place to start your aerospace journey. We here at WT towers have no experience with that, so we will leave that to those who do. Maybe some nice visitor can offer some support on that subject, and we would be happy to post it. Same goes for advanced degrees. 

    Science Subjects

    Science. Math. Chemistry. Computer Science. And we take it for granted you should be good with your hands. You also should be good with heights, cramped spaces and able to work well in the extremes of environmental conditions.

    For example, Line Maintenance engineers at O’Hare will change out the main wheel of a Boeing B737 in about two hours. They’ll do it in teams, wearing modified wet suits against the -40 Deg windchill. Yes, these are mechanics, but you will spend a lot of time in similar places.

    Course Accreditation

    Wherever you are looking, make sure your chosen College or University is accredited in the way that you expect or need. In the USA for example, there is the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET. Just go there, type in the Institution name and see what courses are accredited. They also tell you about the international mutual recognition accords at ABET.

    These accords, and other agreements, help you see things like semesters abroad in other well recognized colleges and approvals in other jurisdictions. In the EU they the ENAEE, The European Network for Accreditation of Engineering Education and you can search the EUR-ACE database here.  

    But you need to find out what accreditation your course has and how that compares with other colleges and courses. Here’s a table we made to get you started.

    Design for Study

    We looked at the top five worldwide Aerospace graduate degree in Aerospace Engineering programs and here are the standard modules you should expect to complete. 

    • Engineering Math
    • Engineering Principles
    • Chemistry
    • Electrical Engineering
    • Fluid Mechanics
    • Thermodynamics
    • Aircraft Structural Design
    • Propulsion Systems

    If you have that warm tingling feeling when you read this list, we are giving you a virtual high five. If you feel like the wind was sucked out of your lungs, we understand that too. And you need to have a chat with your guidance counselor. Maybe this flight career is not for you. 

    Aeronautical Experience

    Still not sure? No problem, for example, you should do the following, if they are at all within your capability.

    • Work or Intern or Part time at an aerospace company. There’s nothing like putting your hands on that cold aluminum. Or on some reinforced carbon composite.
    • YouTube. Any excuse, right? We are always disappointed in useful content in this area. Most of the big aviation colleges don’t really have day-in-the-life videos that give a good feel for what it is like. And some companies must have been told that no video should be more than thirty secs long.

    But here’s some channels you should visit…

    Start here. Everything from actual maintenance work by real people to educational, Informative design criteria info. Criminally low 85k subscribers.

    Good solid videos that give a good feel for aerospace systems.

    Excellent Engineering content. Mostly Defense, innovative. But good looks at real people in real roles. Great for new prototypes or conceptual design of aircraft.

    Australia’s Aviation Authorities channel. Only 8k subs? Stop watching millionaires on TikTok showing you how to tuck in your shirt and get here instead. Scroll down the Engineer videos. Gold.

    We said it before, and we said it again. The Feds are pound-for-pound the best deliverers of free resources and engineering degree content. That’s right, free. This channel is an absolute goldmine of videos of Aerospace engineering and aircraft design content.

    Aircraft Engineer Salaries

    Here are the salary rates for top-tier technical staff at Aircraft Leasing and Financing institutions. From a leading recruitment agency that works worldwide. We cannot link to the report as it is proprietary. If you want to ask us for the link, no problem, we will give it to you. But these are the Aerospace Engineers roles

    • SVP Technical (10 yrs. experience) Basic Salary: USD $250K + Bonus: 35%
    • VP Technical (10 yrs. experience) Basic Salary: USD $ 175k + Bonus: 30%
    • Technical Manager (5 yrs. experience) Basic Salary: USD $ 120k + Bonus: 20%
    Role 2021 Mean Annual Wage ($) Projected Employees by 2031 Entry Level Education % Increase in Employment by 2031 Employers
    Aerospace Engineer $122,270 166,452 Bachelors Degree 6% OEMs, MROs
    Aircraft Maintenance Technician $ 65,380 153,400 Postsecondary non Degree 6% Airlines, MRO, Airports
    Hanger Manager $ 98,230 10,000 High School Diploma 8% Airports
    Operations Specialist $ 47,880 5,000 High School Diploma 8% Airports
    Aviation Safety Inspector $ 77,560 15,000 High School Diploma 4.5% Airlines, Airports
    Aviation Planner $ 76,730 35,000 Bachelors Degree 2.5% Airlines
    Aviation Systems Engineer $ 122, 270 153,400 Bachelors Degree 6.3% Airlines, MROs
    Aviation Human Resources Specialist $ 126,230 234,000 Bachelors Degree 7.3% Airlines, Airports, MROs
    Aviation Data Analyst $ 96,710 125,000 Bachelors Degree 8% All Employers

    *Salary is Median Range in US 2021 dollars according to the US Bureau of Labor statistics. This has been crossed referenced with five top G7 countries and found to be within 3-5%. For indicative purposes only. 

    Like we said before, a lot of our friends and peers start in the engineering side and take that into commercial or sales. If those areas, you can double the above numbers if you are successful. At the tippety-top all bets are off. As is understandable, but what we want you guys to know are two things.

    First, Engineers make it to the top because they should and second, we just want you to help with #netzero and environmental standards on the way. Ok. Make that coin all you like, just do it while making our great business sustainable while delivering the products that are most friendly to our planet. 

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