Engineers and associated workers find employment in many different types of workplaces, from government offices to engineering companies and telecommunications firms. There are many different types of engineering fields and therefore many different career options, from traditional fields such as civil, mechanical and electrical engineering to newer fields such as telecommunications, mechatronic, biomedical and environmental engineering. There are also a range of roles in the technology field in areas such as aviation.
VET graduates will generally find work in trade-related roles supporting professional staff (such as engineering associates or engineering tradespeople). Some roles are highly specialised, such as aircraft maintenance engineers (who install, maintain and repair aircraft components) and metal machinists (who make machines and equipment used for production).
To become a professional engineer, you must complete an undergraduate or postgraduate degree accredited by Engineers Australia. There are many career options for degree graduates. While most go on to work as engineers in their field, some become involved in different areas of engineering depending on their expertise, such as design or sales. Other engineers go on to work as consults or teachers in the industry. Technology degree graduates are also employed in professional roles — a bachelor of aviation graduate, for example, can become a commercial pilot.
International graduates of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in engineering may be eligible to undertake a Professional Year Program (PYP) through Engineers Australia. This is a year-long program that assists international students to obtain work experience and workplace skills at the conclusion of their Australian degree. Graduates receive 44 weeks of practical training and undertake a 12-week internship with a host company. Graduates who successfully complete a PYP can increase their chances of gaining permanent residency in Australia. For more information about the Professional Year in Engineering, see the Engineering Education Australia website.