Aerospace engineering: How to get into the field

Have you ever been on a flight and wondered how the plane is flying? A combination of physics, mathematics and innovation make up the wonderful field of aerospace engineering. Beyond this, aerospace engineering is a complex field that plays a pivotal role in shaping the future of human exploration and transportation. In this blog, we’ll delve into what aerospace engineering is all about and how aspiring engineers can get into this exciting field.

What is aerospace engineering?

Aerospace engineering is the branch of engineering that deals with the design, development, testing and production of aircraft, spacecraft and related systems and equipment. Aerospace engineers tackle challenges related to flight performance, safety, efficiency and environmental impact, pushing the boundaries of technology to conquer the skies and even beyond the stratosphere.

How to get into the field

Embarking on a journey into aerospace engineering requires a blend of passion, education, and practical experience. Here’s how you can get into this field and progress further:

  1. Draw on a solid foundation: You’ll usually need four or five GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent to start your career in aerospace engineering. Focusing on areas such as maths and physics is very helpful as they help to form the basis of aerospace engineering principles.
  2. Pursue a degree: Having a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering or a related field under you belt is a key step to getting into the field. Alternatively, you can opt for mechanical engineering or electrical. It would be useful to consider joining a university with a reputable aerospace engineering course that offers hands-on projects, research opportunities and access to good facilities. This will give you a taste of the industry that you will be entering and will extend your knowledge and skills.
  3. Gain practical experience: In the attitude of developing new skills, seek internships, apprenticeships, or volunteer positions to gain practical experience in the aerospace industry. These opportunities provide invaluable insights into real-world engineering challenges and help you develop essential skills in design, analysis and problem-solving. Some companies will allow you to join as an aerospace engineering technician and do on-the-job training to qualify as an engineer.
  4. Specialise and further your knowledge: As you progress in your career, you can explore specialising in a particular area of aerospace engineering, such as aircraft design, space exploration, propulsion systems, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Pursuing postgraduate degrees, such as a master’s or Ph.D. in aerospace engineering, can open up opportunities for leadership roles, research positions and specialised expertise.
  5. Stay engaged and up to date: Technology and data is constantly changing so it is important to keep up with the latest developments, technologies, and trends in aerospace engineering by attending conferences, workshops, and seminars. You can join professional organisations like the Royal Aeronautical Society to network with industry professionals and access resources for professional development.

Aerospace engineering is a captivating field that combines science, technology, and innovation to boost humanity to new heights of exploration and discovery. It is a great career with an average salary of £40,116* in the UK. By following the advice outlined in this blog and staying committed to learning and growth, aspiring engineers can manoeuvre towards a rewarding and impactful career in aerospace engineering.

At Manpower Engineering, we help engineers across all sectors unleash their potential. We know the market, where the demand is and where you can grow your career. Put simply, we get you where you want to be, faster! Whether you’re looking for an entry level role or you’re an experienced engineer looking for a managerial position, our specialist engineering recruiters are on hand to match you with challenging roles in outstanding companies.

View all our engineering jobs here and apply today!

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