ashraf549
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I'm applying for Chemical Engineering and have sent of my application. However, many are saying that Chemical Engineering is not worth the time and effort, despite the decent pay.

Here is summary of the PROs and Cons I have found from different parts of TSR:

Pros: Very good salary, great maths skill to get into different jobs, lots of practical work, international jobs, looked up as a very-good degree, making and designing products.

Cons: Its difficult, not worth it, others Engineering disciplines require less effort and more fun (said by some). Work industries with a hard-hat on is boring and frustrating sometimes.

Can you please post your suggestions on any others PROS and CONS. Can anyone comment on this, is Chemical Engineering Really worth it?

If I eventually come to the conclusion that I no longer want to pursue a ChemicalEng I'll take a leap year and apply for something else.
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a10
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(Original post by ashraf549)

Cons: Its difficult, not worth it, others Engineering disciplines require less effort and more fun.
lol :no:
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tatimango
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all (science) engineering degrees require effort (and hardhats) and are much more fun compared to chemEng
pros
- idk why but apparently,prestige
-most universities have developed great connections with companies so its easier to land first job (however which ever engineering degree you pick companies are going to come to you as long as you are at a good uni and you do good)
-STARTING salary>> note starting
cons
-boring content which is what makes it look complicated when seriously, it's the life draining out of you that's making it look complicated
-After that high starting starting salary progression is not as awesome
-if we were to eliminate 2 sectors banking and oil,which will be really hard to get into with a crappy degree ie 2.2/3rd or if you are from a crappy uni, the options are rather poorly paid for the type of work conditions they have

i wanted to study chemEng for undergrad but the course seemed very dull and looked like it required someone who could keep up with dis-interesting subjects that are not cutting edge. i applied for it without knowing what exactly it was all about, (i literally Googled highest paying undergrad jobs and picked the second highest thing-chemeng).i looked at my course content after i got my offers and the chemeng content was not as awesome as it sounded so i decided to study MatSci&Engineering.

and the thing google didnt tell me was how with most degrees (even history)i could still get into banking,how with any relevant science/engineering degree i was yearned for by oil companies ,and how they are other super cool jobs that you could do using even a chemistry degree that pay even better as you progress and are less stressful.its all comes down to how you do in uni, which uni ,contacts and extra work stuff you do during uni, and all that depends upon how much you are passionate about your subject. hell as cliche as it sounds with a good engineering undergraduate degree,you can be anything you want (even a lawyer)

so honestly study what you feel is awesome enough, something you really are interested in.you will end up most probably better than what TSR or google says
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NuriaM
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Don't agree with cons, am currently studying chemical engineering and have done about 3 different internships during my time at Uni (4 including with the university). You don't automatically go on to 'hard hat jobs' it depends on your area of interest including:
- process engineering (which I have done in the office and offshore)
- project management (handling too projects of the companies)
- project engineer
- finance/business
- field engineer (which requires a lot of hard hatting (if u get what I mean))
- pharmaceuticals

Etc....do some research on the various areas and u will see

Relevant industries include oil and gas, pharmaceuticals, energy, water treatment, food and drink, plastics and toiletries, investment banks etc.

It really depends on your area of interest.
Also in terms of difficultly, chemical engineering is not As difficult as some people proclaim it to be, trust me, if u are actually interested and are willing to put in time and effort (doesn't mean that you won't have a social life, plenty of chemengs party hard and work hard).
Basic things in chemical engineering are:
Physics
Chemistry
Maths
And some biology (for bioengineering)

My advice:
Check what the university is offering in terms of modules for the 1st year and do a quick research on those modules to find relevant books so u can see what the material is like usually 1st year involves;
heat transfer, thermodynamics, engineering mathematics, labs, fluid mechanics, chemistry.

Check: whynotchemeng.com

Hope this helps for u to decide





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NuriaM
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(Original post by tatimango)
all (science) engineering degrees require effort (and hardhats) and are much more fun compared to chemEng
pros
- idk why but apparently,prestige
-most universities have developed great connections with companies so its easier to land first job (however which ever engineering degree you pick companies are going to come to you as long as you are at a good uni and you do good)
-STARTING salary>> note starting
cons
-boring content which is what makes it look complicated when seriously, it's the life draining out of you that's making it look complicated
-After that high starting starting salary progression is not as awesome
-if we were to eliminate 2 sectors banking and oil,which will be really hard to get into with a crappy degree ie 2.2/3rd or if you are from a crappy uni, the options are rather poorly paid for the type of work conditions they have

i wanted to study chemEng for undergrad but the course seemed very dull and looked like it required someone who could keep up with dis-interesting subjects that are not cutting edge. i applied for it without knowing what exactly it was all about, (i literally Googled highest paying undergrad jobs and picked the second highest thing-chemeng).i looked at my course content after i got my offers and the chemeng content was not as awesome as it sounded so i decided to study MatSci&Engineering.

and the thing google didnt tell me was how with most degrees (even history)i could still get into banking,how with any relevant science/engineering degree i was yearned for by oil companies ,and how they are other super cool jobs that you could do using even a chemistry degree that pay even better as you progress and are less stressful.its all comes down to how you do in uni, which uni ,contacts and extra work stuff you do during uni, and all that depends upon how much you are passionate about your subject. hell as cliche as it sounds with a good engineering undergraduate degree,you can be anything you want (even a lawyer)

so honestly study what you feel is awesome enough, something you really are interested in.you will end up most probably better than what TSR or google says
To be fair if u didn't study chemical engineering u can't actually say its dull and the subjects are disinteresting without being involved in it, the majority of the students in my class picked the course for the same reason u did, and they enjoy it a lot, probably depends on the Uni, but my Uni is more practical so we take what we learnt out of the class to the labs and major design projects which makes it more interesting. We also have loads of subjects with mechanical engineers and chemists so technically their subjects must be dull too.
Plus u can't judge a course based on the names of the modules without researching what it's about.
Also high starting salary depends on ur experience like any job. I know students who started at £18,000 and get increased to around £40,000 in a few years because of their experience. My cousin is an employed chemical engineer earning £54,000 after working 5 years in an energy company (starting salary of £20,000). Again it depends on the experience u have, if u leave Uni with no experience u can't expect to achieve a high salary just like that since u would require more training. In internships they provide u with some of the training already that is needed for when u get full employment.

Now that's my rant over :P
But ur right depends on what they feel is right to study, whichever one they feel is awesome enough and worth it plus there are other courses that pay better but don't just go after something that seems less stressful or that pays better because of those reasons because u may not end up liking ur course as much. It's best that u follow u gut feeling google and other people will say things based on their experiences (including myself) but that might not be what u will feel, maybe go to some Uni's ask for a tour or something for these courses so u can see for urself what it's like before u make a final decision.


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a10
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(Original post by NuriaM)
To be fair if u didn't study chemical engineering u can't actually say its dull and the subjects are disinteresting without being involved in it, the majority of the students in my class picked the course for the same reason u did, and they enjoy it a lot, probably depends on the Uni, but my Uni is more practical so we take what we learnt out of the class to the labs and major design projects which makes it more interesting. We also have loads of subjects with mechanical engineers and chemists so technically their subjects must be dull too.
Plus u can't judge a course based on the names of the modules without researching what it's about.
Also high starting salary depends on ur experience like any job. I know students who started at £18,000 and get increased to around £40,000 in a few years because of their experience. My cousin is an employed chemical engineer earning £54,000 after working 5 years in an energy company (starting salary of £20,000). Again it depends on the experience u have, if u leave Uni with no experience u can't expect to achieve a high salary just like that since u would require more training. In internships they provide u with some of the training already that is needed for when u get full employment.

Now that's my rant over :P
But ur right depends on what they feel is right to study, whichever one they feel is awesome enough and worth it plus there are other courses that pay better but don't just go after something that seems less stressful or that pays better because of those reasons because u may not end up liking ur course as much. It's best that u follow u gut feeling google and other people will say things based on their experiences (including myself) but that might not be what u will feel, maybe go to some Uni's ask for a tour or something for these courses so u can see for urself what it's like before u make a final decision.


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3 intern-ships? Dayumn.

Is it true after you get the first it becomes easier to get the second since they see the relevant exp? Then again i suppose you would still have to do well in the asessment centre
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NuriaM
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(Original post by a10)
3 intern-ships? Dayumn.

Is it true after you get the first it becomes easier to get the second since they see the relevant exp? Then again i suppose you would still have to do well in the asessment centre
If it's with the same company it is easier to get an internship. But actually it's not at all easy u still need to show how u stand out, do all the procedures (of course depending on the companies) but major companies are very strict regardless of experience or not. It's a big advantage to have the experience compared to having nothing just means that during the interview process they will ask u more about that then just Uni and ur grades. Also when u get the internship they provide u with more training that the current employees do, and better projects to work on.


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NuriaM
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Best advantage is getting job offers before u finished Uni because of the experience I would def recommend for anyone to get involved with placement schemes while at Uni


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a10
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(Original post by NuriaM)
If it's with the same company it is easier to get an internship. But actually it's not at all easy u still need to show how u stand out, do all the procedures (of course depending on the companies) but major companies are very strict regardless of experience or not. It's a big advantage to have the experience compared to having nothing just means that during the interview process they will ask u more about that then just Uni and ur grades. Also when u get the internship they provide u with more training that the current employees do, and better projects to work on.


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did you do all your 3 with the same company?
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NuriaM
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(Original post by a10)
did you do all your 3 with the same company?
Nope I did my first one in a company called SembCorp Utilities (a Singaporean energy company operating in the north east).
Before that I had done a year as laboratory technician assistant at my Uni as training.
My second was abroad in Angola for the Angolan company Sonangol (an oil and gas company)
My 3rd is ConocoPhillips (oil and gas as well)

Hoping to get a 4th before finishing my course


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sweet_reema
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(Original post by NuriaM)
Nope I did my first one in a company called SembCorp Utilities (a Singaporean energy company operating in the north east).
Before that I had done a year as laboratory technician assistant at my Uni as training.
My second was abroad in Angola for the Angolan company Sonangol (an oil and gas company)
My 3rd is ConocoPhillips (oil and gas as well)

Hoping to get a 4th before finishing my course


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Which uni did you go to??? How did you apply and get these internships???
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Shelock
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I have heard from 2-3 different people that employment with a mech eng degree is a bit easier than a chem eng degree due to the broadness of mech eng. But a mech engineer's career is less likely to flourish as compared to that of a chem eng under the same circumstances, I.e, your job can benefit more from experience in a chem eng career as compared to a mech eng career.
Would anyone please shed light on this matter?
To what extent is this true, if at all.

And also question number 2:
Roughly what number of mech engineers are likely to be employed by a sports car company 4-5 years after grad and is it possible to work with sports car companies or companies like Google with a chem eng degree?
Yes, I know I have wild dreams xD
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viggo127
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Im currently in the U.K. and I'm doing maths, biology, physics and economics. Even though i do have chemistry do you think this is something i could still get into. i didn't really think properly when i was choosing my options and im really regretting choosing biology.
thanks
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Amoot
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(Original post by NuriaM)
Nope I did my first one in a company called SembCorp Utilities (a Singaporean energy company operating in the north east).
Before that I had done a year as laboratory technician assistant at my Uni as training.
My second was abroad in Angola for the Angolan company Sonangol (an oil and gas company)
My 3rd is ConocoPhillips (oil and gas as well)

Hoping to get a 4th before finishing my course


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Hey!

Would u plz tell mW which uni did u go to?

And wat helped u get the internships?
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Amoot
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Would you plz tell me which uni did u go to and what helped you theost in getting the internships!?
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zoltanbig88
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I studied chemical engineering and graduated with MEng in 2009. The final project was the only really interesting aspect. The rest is quite dull and boring. Regarding salary, unless you make it into Oil and Gas down the traditional route as a process engineer the salary won't be higher than in any of the other industries mentioned. However generally speaking, salaries are always much higher in the oil and gas irrespective of degree studied.What I have noticed and would throw caution to the wind, is that the IChemE is pushing more and more graduates into studying chemical engineering without assessing the impact on its members already. Eventually it will be a matter of supply and demand, were there will be a surplus of chemical engineers, ultimately impact salaries. Do whatever you are really interested in and makes you happy, the salary will follow. I know process engineers whom studied mechanical engineering and with aerospace opening up more, biomechanics a future area and with more ability to transfer skills and industry later on in one's career, mechanical engineering seems to allow a greater degree of flexibility in terms of careers and progression.
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zoltanbig88
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I studied chemical engineering and graduated with MEng in 2009. The final project was the only really interesting aspect. The rest is quite dull and boring. Regarding salary, unless you make it into Oil and Gas down the traditional route as a process engineer the salary won't be higher than in any of the other industries mentioned. However generally speaking, salaries are always much higher in the oil and gas irrespective of degree studied.

What I have noticed and would throw caution to the wind, is that the IChemE is pushing more and more graduates into studying chemical engineering without assessing the impact on its members already. Eventually it will be a matter of supply and demand, were there will be a surplus of chemical engineers, ultimately impact salaries. Do whatever you are really interested in and makes you happy, the salary will follow. I know process engineers whom studied mechanical engineering and with aerospace opening up more, biomechanics a future area and with more ability to transfer skills and industry later on in one's career, mechanical engineering seems to allow a greater degree of flexibility in terms of career progression.
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joseph9299
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Hi I am planning on studying chemical engineering or mechanical engineering but I just want to make sure if the subjects I am studying at A levels right now will get me to the top universities (e.g. Warwick,kings):. Yes i do soft subject in business studies, will i be disadvantaged - would you say is best for me to change the subject and do something like psychology a level in year 13 -

Maths
Business
Chemistry


What would be the ideal grades I need to achieve at AS and be predicted for A2 to get an offer from either Warwick, St Andrews, Durham, UCL, Nottingham, Queen mary, sheffield, Kings

Thanks!
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zoltanbig88
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Hi Joseph,

I feel the three you listed, Maths, Business and Chemistry are good enough for both Chemical and Mechanical but check the entry requirements as some universities might differ. You will no doubt have optional modules in your first year aand second year that will involve chemistry, biology, business, finance, operations management, earth sciences, etc that will complement your business A-level.

I would say you would be more disadvantaged taking psychology than business. Whilst human factors in engineering is playing a more important role, I feel marrying the two is not favoured upon just yet by mainstream companies. Maybe as processes with human involvment become more complex such as in space and in our oceans, then that would be a great asset to have under your belt. Until then, business, will not doubt always be favoured upon.

I couldn't tell you the ideal grades im afraid. I would say aim as high as you can and don't settle for less. If the demand for a particular course at university is big, then no doubt the entry requirements will be too. Aim high and give yourself the best chance of studying either course. If you are unsure of what course to enroll in, take a look at the respective institution's membership uptake verus the number of jobs and career prospectives. From my personal perspective, there are alone so many process plants that can be designed and modified in each country and around the world irrespective of industry, such as phara, cosmetics, food, chemicals, oil, gas, etc.

I hope this is of help.
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Doones
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(Original post by joseph9299)
Hi I am planning on studying chemical engineering or mechanical engineering but I just want to make sure if the subjects I am studying at A levels right now will get me to the top universities (e.g. Warwick,kings):. Yes i do soft subject in business studies, will i be disadvantaged - would you say is best for me to change the subject and do something like psychology a level in year 13 -

Maths
Business
Chemistry


What would be the ideal grades I need to achieve at AS and be predicted for A2 to get an offer from either Warwick, St Andrews, Durham, UCL, Nottingham, Queen mary, sheffield, Kings

Thanks!
Did you check the Entry Requirements for those universities? If you have the subjects they require for the course(s) and are on target for the grades they specify then an offer is likely. If you don't then....

For example:

Warwick asks for AAB including Maths and Physics for MechEng. And most (if not all) your potential choices require Physics for MechEng.

Warwick doesn't offer ChemEng.

KCL doesn't offer either ChemEng or MechEng...



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