Engineers: Always Inventing the Future (Part 2)

March 16, 2017

Written by: Natalie Lim

We're continuing our journey through National Engineering Month with another round-up of some different types of engineering! If you missed our first NEM 2017 post, you can click here to read it. Without further ado, here's some more jobs you could possibly do with an engineering degree, and some more awesome women that are doing them! 

Eva Martinez. Photo: As It Happens Photography Inc.

Aerospace Engineering

Aerospace engineers have the exciting job of getting to work with airplanes, spacecraft, missiles, rockets, and more! They are involved in the planning and design of aircraft and spacecraft, and also get to help test and manufacture the machines that they create. It was aerospace engineers that made it possible for humans to land on the moon, and there are many aerospace engineers that are currently working to put humans on Mars! Eva Martinez, the Vice-President of Women in Aerospace Canada, trained as an Aeronautical Engineer in the Royal Canadian Air Force. One of her responsibilities during that time was maintaining a fleet of search and rescue planes. You can learn more about Eva and a whole host of other women working in the Aerospace industry at the Ottawa CWSE website!

Siobhan Dooley EIT. Photo: Engineers Canada

Chemical Engineering

Chemical engineers work behind-the-scenes to create and improve some of the products that we use on a day to day basis, such as paper, plastic, and gas. Working as a chemical engineer means getting down to the basic building blocks of all matter and experimenting to see how little changes can make a big impact! It also means opening yourself up to a wide range of possibilities, from manufacturing fertilizers or medicines to developing methods of pollution control. Siobhan Dooley is an EIT (Engineer in Training) who was drawn to chemical engineering because she wanted to work in the field and get to practice problem solving. In the future, she hopes to become a project manager and make stronger connections between the mining industry and First Nations Communities. You can learn more about Siobhan here!

Dr. Lesley Shannon P.Eng

Computer Engineering

Computer engineering is an incredibly exciting field, because computer engineers create and improve the technologies that our modern world is built on, including computer hardware and the Internet. With technology becoming more and more crucial to modern life, it's the job of computer engineers to make sure that things run smoothly, as well as to come up with creative new ways to use technology for the betterment of humanity. Here at WWEST, we have a personal connection to this kind of engineering because Dr. Lesley Shannon P.Eng (NSERC Chair for Women in Science and Engineering, BC/Yukon Region) is a Computer Engineer! Her area of expertise is computer systems design, a field that helps to design and implement computer systems in a wide range of areas, including robotics, cloud computing, and aerospace systems. You can learn more about Dr. Shannon here!

Neena Gandhi P.Eng on the site of her pipeline project. Photo: Techsploration

Mechanical Engineering

What do bike locks, car engines, elevators and roller coasters have in common? They wouldn't exist without mechanical engineers! Mechanical engineering involves researching, designing and developing a variety of products, and the career possibilities are almost limitless, because mechanical engineers are involved in the creation of pretty much anything you can think of that moves. Neena Gandhi P.Eng uses her degree to help build subsea pipelines for the oil and gas industry, and is involved in every step of the process - from planning projects to talking with clients to having the pipelines built, and then installed. You can watch Neena at work here!

Emilie Williams P.Eng planning a new mining operation. Photo: exploreformore

Mining Engineering

Mining engineers help extract important mineral deposits from the earth by surveying deposits, designing mines, overseeing extraction, and working to minimize the impact mines have on the environment. They also help to create and implement programs that ensure the safety of all staff on site, and oversee the day-to-day business operations of the mine. Emilie Williams P.Eng, a mining engineer working in Canada, loves her job because it includes so much variety - on any given day, she could be analyzing potential mining sites, working with a team to prepare detailed work plans for a new project, or overseeing mine construction to make sure that everything is up to the required safety standards. You can learn more about Emilie's job here!

From working with chemicals to designing computers to helping build almost anything you can think of, we hope this mini-series more than proves that an engineering degree is the gateway to a whole world of practical applications. Thanks for joining us for National Engineering Month, and thanks to all the engineers out there for inventing the future, every day. 

For more information on any of the jobs listed here (and many more), you can check out the National Engineering Month website, as well as the WISE Atlantic Engineering Career video series. Wondering why STEM is a good career option for your child? Our White Paper series can help.