Career and Education Opportunities for Materials Engineers in Aurora, Illinois
There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for materials engineers in the Aurora, Illinois area. About 840 people are currently employed as materials engineers in Illinois. By 2016, this is expected to grow 7% to 900 people employed. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for materials engineers are expected to grow by about 9.3%. In general, materials engineers evaluate materials and develop machinery and processes to manufacture materials for use in products that must meet specialized design and performance specifications.
The income of a materials engineer is about $36 hourly or $76,920 per year on average in Illinois. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $39 hourly or $81,820 per year on average. Incomes for materials engineers are not quite as good as in the overall category of Engineering in Illinois, and not quite as good as the overall Engineering category nationally. People working as materials engineers can fill a number of jobs, such as: manufacturing engineer, research engineer, and process engineer.
There are 175 schools of higher education in the Aurora area, including two within twenty-five miles of Aurora where you can get a degree to start your career as a materials engineer. The most common level of education for materials engineers is a Bachelor's degree. It will take about four years to learn to be a materials engineer if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Materials Engineer
In general, materials engineers evaluate materials and develop machinery and processes to manufacture materials for use in products that must meet specialized design and performance specifications. They also develop new uses for known materials.
Materials engineers monitor material performance and evaluate material deterioration. They also analyze product failure data and laboratory test results to establish causes of problems and design solutions. Equally important, materials engineers have to supervise the work of technologists as well as other engineers and scientists. They are often called upon to formulate and evaluate new projects, consulting with other engineers and corporate executives as needed. Finally, materials engineers evaluate technical specifications and economic factors relating to process or product layout objectives.
Every day, materials engineers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they think through problems and come up with general rules.
It is important for materials engineers to conduct or supervise tests on raw materials or finished products to insure their quality. They are often called upon to perform managerial functions, such as preparing proposals and budgets, analyzing labor costs, and writing reports. They also layout and direct the testing or control of processing procedures. They are sometimes expected to solve problems in variety of engineering fields, such as mechanical and aerospace. Somewhat less frequently, materials engineers are also expected to supervise production and testing processes in industrial settings, such as metal refining facilities, smelting or foundry operations, or nonmetallic materials production operations.
Materials engineers sometimes are asked to write for technical magazines and trade association publications. They also have to be able to supervise production and testing processes in industrial settings, such as metal refining facilities, smelting or foundry operations, or nonmetallic materials production operations and modify properties of metal alloys, using thermal and mechanical treatments. And finally, they sometimes have to layout and direct the testing or control of processing procedures.
Like many other jobs, materials engineers must be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution and be reliable.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Aurora include:
- Aerodynamics Engineer. Perform a variety of engineering work in designing, constructing, and testing aircraft, missiles, and spacecraft. May conduct basic and applied research to evaluate adaptability of materials and equipment to aircraft design and manufacture. May recommend improvements in testing equipment and techniques.
- Agricultural Engineer. Apply knowledge of engineering technology and biological science to agricultural problems concerned with power and machinery, electrification, structures, soil and water conservation, and processing of agricultural products.
- Biomedical Engineer. Apply knowledge of engineering, biology, and biomechanical principles to the design, development, and evaluation of biological and health systems and products, such as artificial organs, prostheses, instrumentation, medical information systems, and health management and care delivery systems.
- Chemical Engineer. Design chemical plant equipment and devise processes for manufacturing chemicals and products, such as gasoline, synthetic rubber, and pulp, by applying principles and technology of chemistry, physics, and engineering.
- Civil Engineer. Perform engineering duties in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of building structures, and facilities, such as roads, railroads, airports, bridges, harbors, channels, dams, irrigation projects, pipelines, power plants, water and sewage systems, and waste disposal units. Includes architectural, structural, and geo-technical engineers.
- Civil Engineering Technician. Apply theory and principles of civil engineering in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of structures and facilities under the direction of engineering staff or physical scientists.
- Computer Engineer. Research, design, and test computer or computer-related equipment for commercial, industrial, or scientific use. May supervise the manufacturing and installation of computer or computer-related equipment and components.
- Electrical Engineer. Design, develop, or supervise the manufacturing and installation of electrical equipment, components, or systems for commercial, industrial, or scientific use.
- Electronics Engineer. Research, design, and test electronic components and systems for commercial, industrial, or scientific use utilizing knowledge of electronic theory and materials properties. Design electronic circuits and components for use in fields such as telecommunications, aerospace guidance and propulsion control, acoustics, or instruments and controls.
- Equipment Engineering Technician. Apply electrical theory and related knowledge to test and modify developmental or operational electrical machinery and electrical control equipment and circuitry in industrial or commercial plants and laboratories. Usually work under direction of engineering staff.
- Fire Prevention Research Engineer. Research causes of fires, determine fire protection methods, and design or recommend materials or equipment such as structural components or fire-detection equipment to assist organizations in safeguarding life and property against fire, explosion, and related hazards.
- Health, Safety, and Environment Manager. Plan, implement, and coordinate safety programs, requiring application of engineering principles and technology, to prevent or correct unsafe environmental working conditions.
- Industrial Engineer. Design, develop, and evaluate integrated systems for managing industrial production processes including human work factors, quality control, inventory control, logistics and material flow, cost analysis, and production coordination.
- Industrial Engineering Technician. Apply engineering theory and principles to problems of industrial layout or manufacturing production, usually under the direction of engineering staff. May study and record time, motion, and speed involved in performance of production, maintenance, and other worker operations for such purposes as establishing standard production rates or improving efficiency.
- Landscape Architect. Plan and design land areas for such projects as parks and other recreational facilities, airports, and commercial, industrial, and residential sites.
- Manufacturing Engineer. Apply knowledge of materials and engineering theory and methods to design, integrate, and improve manufacturing systems or related processes. May work with commercial or industrial designers to refine product designs to increase producibility and decrease costs.
- Mechanical Engineer. Perform engineering duties in planning and designing tools, engines, and other mechanically functioning equipment. Oversee installation, operation, and repair of such equipment as centralized heat, gas, and steam systems.
- Petroleum Engineer. Devise methods to improve oil and gas well production and determine the need for new or modified tool designs. Oversee drilling and offer technical advice to achieve economical and satisfactory progress.
- Product Safety Engineer. Develop and conduct tests to evaluate product safety levels and recommend measures to reduce or eliminate hazards.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Materials Engineer Training
Illinois Institute of Technology - Chicago, IL
Illinois Institute of Technology, 3300 S Federal St, Chicago, IL 60616. Illinois Institute of Technology is a medium sized school located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 7,404 students and an admission rate of 57%. Illinois Institute of Technology has bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree programs in Materials Engineering which graduated five, five, and zero students respectively in 2008.
Northwestern University - Evanston, IL
Northwestern University, 633 Clark St, Evanston, IL 60208. Northwestern University is a large university located in Evanston, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 20,128 students and an admission rate of 27%. Northwestern University has bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree programs in Materials Engineering.
Planning and Scheduling Professional: The PSP certification is to recognize specialists who meet a demanding set of planning and scheduling criteria by a rigorous examination, experience, education and ethical qualificaion.
For more information, see the AACE International (Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering through total cost management) website.
API 571 Supplemental Inspection Certification : API 571 Supplemental Inspection Certification program tests Inspectors' knowledge and expertise in the field of Corrosion and Materials.
For more information, see the American Petroleum Institute website.
Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing Professional - Technologist: ASME GDTP Certification provides the means to recognize proficiency in the understanding and application of the geometric dimensioning and tolerancing (GD&T) principles expressed in the ASME Y14.
For more information, see the American Society of Mechanical Engineers International website.
Protective Coatings Specialist: This certification is geared toward individuals who are experienced, knowledgeable and capable of performing work at an advanced level in both the theory and practice of corrosion prevention and control, and who are capable of performing work at an advanced level in the protective coatings field.
For more information, see the NACE International website.
Highway Materials: This certification program is for highway engineering technicians involved in laboratory and field testing of highway materials such as aggregates, asphalts, concrete, soils, paints, and metals.
For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.
Licensing agency: Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
Address: 320 West Washington, Springfield, IL 62786
Phone: (217) 782-8556
Website: Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
LOCATION INFORMATION: Aurora, Illinois
Aurora is situated in Kane County, Illinois. It has a population of over 171,782, which has grown by 20.1% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Aurora, 103, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Aurora are valued at $143,000 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, one hundred twenty-seven new homes were constructed in Aurora, down from three hundred thirty-eight the previous year.
The three big industries for women in Aurora are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and finance and insurance. The average travel time to work is about 29 minutes. More than 29.9% of Aurora residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 9.3%, is lower than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Aurora is 10.9%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.
The percentage of Aurora residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 56.0%, is more than both the national and state average. Holy Angels Roman Catholic Church, Saint Therese Roman Catholic Church and Bethany of Fox Valley United Methodist Church are all churches located in Aurora. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Aurora is home to the Watkins Hall and the Landmark Industrial Park as well as North River Street Park and O'Donnell Park. Shopping centers in the area include Yorkshire Shopping Center, Village Mart Shopping Center and Fox Valley Mall. Visitors to Aurora can choose from Comfort Suites Aurora, Galena Hotel and Comfort Inn for temporary stays in the area.