Is Mechanical Engineering Hard? (With Student Quotes)

Build things to your heart’s content? Do you wish to comprehend the operation of things? If so, mechanical engineering may be the appropriate profession for you, but it’s not that easy.

Due of the extensive math and scientific requirements, becoming a mechanical engineer is hard. It’s not just physics, chemistry, and biology that you study as a mechanical engineer. It may be a really enjoyable and fulfilling career as well.

Cars, airplanes, and rockets are all made by mechanical engineers. Bridges, huge structures, and even space shuttles are constructed with them.

If mechanical engineering is difficult, this article will address that. and discuss the various factors that contribute to its difficulty.

I also inquired about it from a few acquaintances who pursued mechanical engineering degrees at Stanford and Georgia Tech.

Mechanical Engineering Design and Build

Is Mechanical Engineering Hard?

Mechanical engineering is a challenging field to study in. You’ll need to take a lot of challenging math, science, and engineering coursework in addition to a wide range of other classes. Because mechanical engineering is applied in so many diverse industries, it is both incredibly intriguing and quite challenging.

Mechanical engineering is the application of math and science to the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of machinery and other mechanical systems. It is the broadest category of engineering and includes computer engineering, electrical engineering, aeronautical engineering, biomedical engineering, civil engineering, and more.

You must possess strong problem-solving skills, the capacity for critical thought, and effective interpersonal communication. You must be aware of what to anticipate if you want to be a good mechanical engineer.

The main reasons why mechanical engineering is so hard are as follows:

  1. There is a lot of Math and Science
  2. You Need to Be Able to Communicate Effectively
  3. It Takes Time to Get Used to The Level of Difficulty
  4. It Can Be Very Stressful
  5. It Requires Strong Problem-Solving Skills

Here’s what some of my friends said the main challenges were as a Mechanical Engineering (ME) Major. Here’s what they had to say:

  • “The vast applications of mechanical engineering is what I found to be most difficult. There are so many industries and fields that ME is a part of. But at the same time, I learned so much about how different products and machines worked.” – Mike Hsu, Georgia Tech
  • “Mechanical engineering isn’t easy at all. What I did love was the scope of engineering fields that I learned about. Studying in the ME program really got me to think outside the box of how things work.” – Nathan Lee, Stanford University
  • “My biggest challenge was the amount of material we covered. We were required to take over 100 hours of classes each semester. It was tough to keep up with the pace of the class and still have time left.” – Mark Stevens, Georgia Tech

Even while college isn’t always simple, it doesn’t have to be. College is a terrific place to discover your personality, your interests, and your passions.

With them, you’ll form enduring relationships and create new friends. You will grow as a person and prepare for the future via all you accomplish in school.

There is always something new to learn, which makes mechanical engineering an exciting field to work in. Making tools and other items that support the functioning of our society will be your opportunity. Mechanical engineers can advance in their organizations in a variety of ways.

Mechanical Engineer

How Hard are Mechanical Engineering Courses?

How difficult are the courses in mechanical engineering? It’s a common question. Likewise, “What does the mechanical engineering curriculum look like?”

ME curriculum will include foundational courses in mathematics, science, and engineering. There will be challenging math and science subjects as well as courses that will sharpen and test your ability to reason critically and solve problems.

You will enroll in math, science, and engineering foundations courses over the first two years. These classes will cover Physics, Chemistry, Calculus I, II, and III.

By taking more math and science classes in their third year, students will continue to build upon these fundamental concepts. These courses will address fundamental concepts in a variety of fields, including mechanics, thermodynamics, electricity, fluid dynamics, and more.

Additionally, the students will enroll in more challenging engineering courses like CAD/CAM, Computer Aided Design, Manufacturing Systems, Robotics, and others.

You’ll be able to decide what you want to concentrate on after completing the core courses. You might even consider enrolling in a course in that subject if you feel the desire to learn more about something different.

You can enroll in any of the several technical classes available with a degree in mechanical engineering. Others aren’t as difficult, while some of them are really difficult.

You must be adept in several different skills to succeed in the mechanical engineering program. You might be asked to apply what you’ve studied to solve problems in the real world in some classes while others may ask you to study concepts in depth.

Finally, to demonstrate your level of understanding of the fundamental concepts, some classes may ask you to complete elaborate projects. Mechanical Engineering gets more challenging with each type of competency exam.

The solutions are found by engineers. They learn how to approach issues from fresh angles and find answers. Using machines alone is not all that engineers do. Additionally, they are responsible for developing items, procedures, and systems that enhance peoples’ lives.

Engineering firms frequently design highways, bridges, buildings, and other infrastructure. Assuring the dependability and safety of the items we use on a daily basis is another responsibility of theirs.

Mechanical Engineer Working on a Plane Propeller

Engineers must exercise creativity because many of the issues they encounter may be novel and have no existing solutions in either the internet or their books.

For instance, a company might want a machine that emits less carbon dioxide, yet reducing its efficiency might render it less useful. Engineers must consider how to build a machine that is both efficient and environmentally friendly.

You will learn how to analyze problems critically and come up with creative solutions at a good university. Even if you don’t always succeed, you will always gain something from your mistakes.

Critical thinking will improve, and since you’ll be collaborating on so many projects with others, communication skills will too.

When working on a project, you should consider why you made the decisions you did and whether there were any other options for resolving the issue. If you do this, your engineering skills will improve.

What is the Hardest Year of Mechanical Engineering?

It will be challenging over all four years because the mechanical engineering degree is one of the most challenging to earn. Before being able to enter the workforce as engineers, most students must complete four years of college to acquire the necessary engineering foundations.

As fundamental courses, the first few two years typically have the “easiest” classes. While not as challenging as your junior year, the senior year will still be challenging. The senior classes will be challenging since they will draw on everything you learned in the first three years.

The hardest and most difficult year of your life is usually your junior year. There will be many challenges and tests for you. If you are unprepared, you won’t do well in school.

Concentrate on your area of specialization throughout your junior year. You’ll sign up for all the classes needed to graduate. You should think about what else you might like to learn in your senior year.

A machine or system that helps us perform daily duties will be designed, developed, and constructed by mechanical engineers. So, in order to succeed, students need to be well-versed in a variety of subjects, including math, physics, chemistry, biology, and computer science. Because of this, ME majors won’t truly get a vacation from their classes and won’t be able to “cruise” through any of them.

Mechanical Engineering Students in Robotics

Is Mechanical Engineering More Difficult than Electrical Engineering?

Because it is the most specialized discipline of engineering, electrical engineering is more difficult than mechanical engineering. Though mechanical engineering is utilized to create anything from cellphones to cars to bridges, electrical engineering may require more math.

Engineers that specialize in mechanical design create the machinery that propels vehicles, structures, bridges, and other objects. Plans are created by mechanical engineers for objects made of metal, plastic, wood, glass, and other materials.

They might just work with one kind of material or be knowledgeable about every kind. They must be aware of the components of each substance and how it interacts with other materials. Mechanical engineers must take safety into consideration when creating machinery.

In order to move objects, mechanical engineers create tools and systems. Automobiles, aircraft, trains, and watercraft are all made by mechanical engineers. Additionally, they must ensure their safety in order to prevent errors.

Can I be a Mechanical Engineer If I am Bad at Math?

But if you can’t perform arithmetic well enough, you can’t be a mechanical engineer. Math is heavily weighted in degrees in engineering. You must be familiar with fundamental concepts in algebra, geometry, trigonometry, calculus, probability, statistics, and linear algebra.

These topics center on numbers and shapes. Mechanical engineers create devices such as automobiles, aircraft, trains, and rockets. If you want to be a mechanical engineer, you must have strong math skills.

If you are unable to perform these tasks, you may consider taking more math courses before submitting an application to colleges and hiring a tutor while you are still enrolled.

Is Mechanical Engineering Stressful?

Mechanical engineering work can indeed be highly stressful. You have to spend a lot of time working in a lab or studying, which is stressful.

In school, you’ll devote a significant amount of time to studying, getting ready for exams, and working on assignments. You’ll need to put in a lot of time to address issues and avoid making blunders at work.

Long hours and weekend labor will be required of you. Since you won’t have much spare time, you won’t be able to unwind and rest. But students that are interested in the field frequently act in this manner.

You will need to constantly learn about new concepts, ideas, and information.

As a mechanical engineer, you could experience constant pressure. Your profession demands you to be efficient with your time, pay great attention to details, and have the ability to multitask.

You must also have the ability to start projects, complete them, and then start new ones while the old ones are still in process. You could die if you make a mistake. People may experience anxiety and sadness due to this stress.

Mechanical engineers have extremely demanding jobs. You will face ongoing deadlines and stress as you work to complete your assignment. If you’re not careful, you can find yourself putting in excessively long hours without receiving compensation. Some employers may even need you to put in additional hours.

While challenging, mechanical engineering has a good salary. Mechanical engineers are less concerned about being evicted from their houses or unable to pay their rent because they earn a lot of money than other types of engineers.

Mechanical Engineer

How Smart are Mechanical Engineers?

People who work in mechanical engineering must be exceptionally intelligent because it is a challenging profession. You will require intelligence because you will have to apply your understanding of science, technology, and math to difficult issues.

Mechanical engineers must also be able to improvise and think creatively in order to solve issues. Mechanical engineers frequently operate in stressful environments, therefore they must be prepared and organized. You must be able to communicate with others if you want this work to go successfully.

Mechanical engineering is a fascinating profession to work in because there are so many different types of employment in it. You can begin by conducting research at a university before transitioning to a career in industry. There are numerous opportunities to get your hands dirty and design your own projects as well.

Is Mechanical Engineering a Good Career?

A rewarding career option is mechanical engineering. You’ll be able to work in a number of industries and professions while earning solid pay and enjoying flexibility in your job. A degree in mechanical engineering opens up a wide range of job options. Industrial engineering, product design, quality assurance, and research & development are some of the top professions.

Mechanical engineering is an excellent career choice if you want to be financially successful. A mechanical engineer normally makes $95,300 per year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). A 7% annual growth in demand is being seen for mechanical engineers.

Mechanical engineering is essential in the modern world. From solar panels to electric cars, mechanical engineers are crucial to the progress of all of our technologies.

Mechanical engineers will be in high demand in the future of space flight. We will be able to go to other planets and moons, gather resources for use on Earth, and investigate them if we can use rockets more than once. Future space exploration plans must be developed with the help of mechanical engineers.

Mechanical engineers contribute to the manufacture of things that are more dependable, efficient, and user-friendly. By creating innovative technology and production techniques that enable companies to make goods at a lesser cost, these specialists may also help businesses stay competitive.

Mark Stevens said, “I like to see what I’m designing used in real life,” which is why he studied mechanical engineering. “It’s fun to think that my designs will be around for a long time.” Before he even graduated, he had multiple job offers from companies in many different fields. He was picking from companies like Microsoft, Apple, Tesla, and others.

Mechanical Engineering Students in Lab

Is Mechanical Engineering Hard? Final Thoughts

You should expect to be challenged in all of your mechanical engineering courses. You can count on spending a lot of time in the classroom and the lab.

However, if you choose to go down the path of earning a ME degree and pursuing a career in the field, you will be rewarded with outstanding job prospects, a competitive salary, rewarding work, and several chances to develop in your career.

To learn more about other majors, check out these articles: 

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Written by:

Chris Wood
I graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from Stanford University. I’ve been working as a Software Engineer for the past 5 years. While working in this field I’ve had the pleasure of developing software in a wide variety of industries. I look forward to using my experience in order to find a role where I can utilize my creativity and passion for solving complex software engineering problems.

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