Aviation for Girls


Aviation for Girls is a special annual member publication of Women in Aviation International for Girls in Aviation Day. Articles feature young girls living their aviation dreams, career ideas, and education resources.

Issue link: https://afgdigital.epubxp.com/i/742227

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Page 9 of 35

8 AVIATION FOR Girls 2016 big thing, and as America embarks on the next "race to space" it will certainly see a rise in aerospace engineering jobs, specifically in the astronautics realm. But aerospace engineering in and of it- self is still a solid career. Airlines are continuously look ing to operate the most efficient, safe, environmentally friendly aircraft possible, and someone needs to design them. The engineer- ing industry is certainly one in which women are underrepresented, but it's also an industry with growing support for women, and where the potential for women to succeed is limitless. A s a n aerospace eng i neer, you'l l work for companies like Boeing, Air- bus, Cessna, Cirrus, or for the defense industry, as well as a number of other aircraft manufacturers. And in recent years, companies like SpaceX and Vir- gin Galactic have been creating jobs in the aerospace sector. An aerospace en- gineer will often start out in a position designated for entry-level engineers, where they'll be mentored by experi- enced engineers in their specialization and move up from there. As you might expect, experience in management is helpful for engineers who want to move into management positions. Education required: A bachelor's degree in aerospace engineering Median Annual Salary: $110,000 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics) Employers: Boeing, SpaceX, NASA, Virgin Galactic, and many more commercial spacecraft startups NASA /DAVID C . BOWMAN Computer and Systems Engineering "Everything that we fly has to have a brain, along with the hardware and soft- ware, and the associated systems. Sys- tem engineering is a growing field." —Melissa Mena, Director, Career Services and Employer Programs, College of Engineering, ERAU T he computer engineering indus- try is certainly not showing any signs of slowing down. In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in the comput- er and information technology industry as a whole is projected to grow 12 per- cent from 2014 to 2024, adding almost 500,000 new jobs. And as the aviation industr y pro- gresses with fast-growing segments like UAS operations, 3-D printing, and NextGen avionics, it's inevitable that computer engineers will continue to be in high demand in the aviation indus- try. Vince Pujalt, UAS program chair at ERAU, says that that this type of engi- neering isn't even in its prime yet, but is expanding rapidly in part to the UAS industry. "This is just the tip of the ice- berg," Vince says. "The creation of the UAS industry and its different aircraft is feeding the systems engineering indus- try right now." We are already reading about autono- mous automobiles. For years, the idea of autonomous aircraft has been a running joke in the pilot world. That day is not yet here, but is no longer inconceivable. It will be software developers who make it happen. The aviation industry is driven by 3 4 computers. If you're looking for job se- curity and a good salary, this is the ca- reer for you. Entry-level jobs in com- puter or systems engineering include engineering, research, and development for major aviation and aerospace com- panies, but as a computer or systems engineer, your skills and experience are pretty universal and can be used out- side of the aviation industry as well. Education required: A bachelor's degree in computer engineering or systems engineering Median Annual Wage: $114,000 (Bureau of Labor Statistics) Employers: Boeing, Rockwell Collins, L-3 Communications, Titan Aerospace, Lockheed Martin, NASA Aerospace Engineering/ Astronautics "Aerospace engineering has been the fastest growing program over the past seven years at ERAU. And with commer- cial space flight on the horizon, the astro- nautics track is the hottest degree within our aerospace engineering program now." —Melissa Mena, Director, Career Services and Employer Programs, College of Engineering, ERAU S paceflight is undergoing a revival. The spectacular and heartwarm- ing days of manned space travel may be over, or at least paused for the time being, but spaceflight remains the next great frontier. But this time, the in- novation is created by private enterprise. Commercial spaceflight is the next

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