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How Do I Become a Composite Engineer?

Jessica F. Black
Jessica F. Black

In nearly all cases, at least a bachelor's degree in engineering is required to become a composite engineer. There are several engineering degrees that hiring companies may accept including chemical, manufacturing, or mechanical engineering. Although general engineering degrees may be accepted, you should research universities in order to find a school that offers a degree program in composite material engineering. Programs that emphasize this branch of engineering will provide you with field specifics that will prepare you to become a composite engineer. A bachelor's degree may help you gain an entry-level position in this profession but a higher degree can prepare you for additional career opportunities.

A bachelor's program in composite material engineering will require that you take several courses in calculus, physics, and chemistry before advancing to courses in your field. Some of the courses that will prepare you to become a composite engineer include polymer processing, mechanics of composites, thermodynamics, and heat and mass transfer. Courses that are accompanied by laboratory sessions will provide you with hands-on training and this courses could include fluid mechanics, composite manufacturing, and transport phenomena. You may need to complete several of these laboratory classes before applying to an internship in the field.

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In addition to the completion of several field-related courses, some internships may require that you have at least a 2.50 grade point average (GPA) and strong written skills. Some of the duties of the internship may include preparing or modifying engineering diagrams, performing research on composite materials, and data analysis. Experience opportunities can increase your chances to become a composite engineer because future employers will be interested in your proficiency in the field. During your four year degree program, you may want to consider seeking part-time employment in the field or completing several internships in different positions.

Employers in this profession will be seeking candidates who have experience performing numerous duties in the field and may require recommendation letters from previous supervisors. Once you have become a composite engineer, you may want to search the Internet and local newspapers for job listings. Some of the companies that employ this position may include aviation companies, catalytic technology groups, and aeronautical design firms. Most companies that hire applicants who have a bachelor's degree in the field may still require that you have at least three to five years of experience. If you choose to enroll in graduate school, you may want to consider working on a master's degree in polymer or composite engineering.

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