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Tip #1: Take good notes, and keep them all after your classes are

over.
Engineering textbooks can be dense, but endure through the tedium. Do your reading – all of it – and keep a
highlighter and page markers handy. After the class is over, keep your most useful and well-written textbooks as
reference. Your notes, annotations, and highlighting will be invaluable later on. You may even want to keep a “Rules
of Thumb” notebook, allowing you quick access to your most-used formulas.

Tip #2: Get to know your professors.
Develop a relationship with your professors so you feel comfortable approaching them and asking for help. Get to
know one or two key professors particularly well, and turn to them for help with your homework, insight into the
industry, and even job or program references.

Tip #3: Ask questions, both in class and out.
Your professors want you to learn. But if the only thing you ever ask is, “Will this be on the test?” then you are not
taking advantage of their knowledge or willingness to help. Ask for additional examples to clarify difficult equations
and concepts. More often than not, your fellow students will thank you for speaking up, and your professor will
appreciate your active investment in the material.

Tip #4: Try to solve a problem before asking for help.
No one wants to do your homework for you. You’ll be more likely to get help if you’ve already begun the effort. Even if
you’re totally lost, make a legitimate, prolonged effort to solve a problem before asking for help. When you do seek
help, be prepared to discuss what you tried already, and bring your scratch paper showing your attempts.

Tip #5: Form a study group.
Working alone can get exasperating if you find yourself stuck on a problem. Working with others will not only
introduce other viewpoints to approaching a problem, it will also provide encouragement and camaraderie in the face
of frustration.

Tip #6: Teach someone else.
One of the most effective ways of ensuring you understand something is by explaining it to someone else. Before you
move past a subject, make sure you not only answered the question but also can replicate and explain the process.
Each new subject and concept will build on the last, so don’t move on until you’ve mastered each new idea.

Tip #7: Diversify your engineering classes.

especially those outside the classroom. and networking events. ask lots of questions. from biomedical to mechanical to chemical to environmental engineering and beyond. and always read your emails through once or twice before sending. which is a form of writing. Understanding not only the subject matter. they demonstrate to potential employers that you can commit to a long-term role and work as part of a team. Increase your worth by becoming proficient in another language. Your practical project experience will also reinforce the “in theory” knowledge you gain in class. but also how other types of engineers approach and solve problems. workshops. And today. Tip #8: Take classes outside engineering. and a well-organized and articulate portfolio will be invaluable during your job search. Tip #9: Hone your communications skills. Internships do more than build your resume. A design class can teach you how to represent information visually and how to talk about an idea from a big picture perspective. Tip #12: Get a summer internship. Tip #10: Learn another language. Engineering knows no political or cultural borders. One of the best portfolio buildings blocks is the summer internship. and don’t be afraid to think of your career on a global level. Want to build bridges in China? You should learn Mandarin. Learn to present an argument simply and without agenda. attend extracurricular lectures. Future employers look for both coursework and relevant experience. Participate in as many hands-on projects as possible. A business class can prepare you for organizational tasks and leadership roles later in your career. and presentation. The most successful engineers are insatiable learners. Do not wait until you need a job to start building professional relationships. Tip #11: Build your portfolio. and get to know as many people working or studying in your field as possible. A writing class can hone your skills for communicating your ideas to others. most technical communication between team members and leadership happens over email. Tip #13: Build your network. even if they are not your concentration. so seek to broaden your skill set generally. In addition to getting to know your professors and peers. The best and most innovative ideas in the world have no hope of growing past the drawing board if you are unable to communicate them effectively. and don’t be afraid to seek guidance or advice from those of advanced experience. Take a genuine interest in the work of others. particularly design classes.Take classes in all sorts of engineering. including conversation. will lend insight into your own field. engineers are in demand everywhere in the world. They were once neophyte engineers too! . writing.

“In the working engineer world.” Adopt the mindset of practicing something until it is perfect. Every future engineer has struggled through seemingly impossible problem sets. Tip #19: Identify your inspiration. Frustration can lead to feeling like an imposter. and push on through the difficult experiences. cranky professors. Engineers often work in teams. recognize that you are challenging yourself like never before. You should feel comfortable in both leading and following the directions of others. Tip #16: Learn when to lead and when to back down. are an invaluable resource for jobs. such as the National Society of Professional Engineers. and every team has one or more leaders. and networking. In the face of inevitable small failures. and replicate their behaviors. Your diploma wont . your GPA matters. advice. Tip #18: Be a perfectionist. In the words of one engineer. The best results occur when a group discusses ideas that have already been fleshed out by individual members. and gut-wrenching exams. Grades are really unimportant. Learn to do your own work and self-motivate. Engineering is a difficult course of study for everyone. When your work is 100%. Professional engineering associations. Tip #20: Take heart and persevere. learn the material thoroughly. Tip #17: Work on the problem before the team meets. it is valuable. take the easier class. as opposed to going as quickly as possible and settling for a B. Always arrive at the team meeting with ideas in mind. If you struggle in calculus. Hone your leadership skills and learn how to effectively influence group decisions. but recognize when your contribution should be to take orders and follow direction. no matter their IQ or test scores. even if it is slower.Tip #14: Scour the resources of professional engineering associations and companies. Identify organizations that share your values and interests. and make as many contacts as possible. Tip #15: Skip the honors class. In the engineering field. If you are doing well enough to be allowed to remain in school then focus on what Roman says about being good at your skill. don’t kill yourself in Honors Calc. What made you decide to study engineering? Who do you look up to in your chosen field? Learn about how individuals and companies have sought and found success. and take the higher grade. a 99% correct product can cost millions of dollars in damages.

and hooking stuff up. If you apply yourself even to the simplest projects and try different component values along the way you will get a chance to reinforce the theory behind the circuit. as a "good electronic engineer" is someone who "can engineer good electronics". You will intuitively know where to start looking for the damaged or fried part and resolve those issues much faster and with much higher efficiency. like actually making stuff. you circuit building skills will come along much more quickly and make better sense to you and your way of understanding the circuit. Theory is becoming less critical over time in a world starting to be dominated by simulators and online calculators.even have your GPA anywhere on it. It is literally amazing that changing the value of one component can cause the device to stop working or to behave erratically. your trouble shooting skills will improve very quickly. . Once you understand how out of spec parts affect a system. and in the future "good engineers" will spend a LOT less time doing formulae but spend more time reading datasheets. Bob Like many degrees it's probably too heavy on theory and too light on real world engineering skills. Not someone "good at doing sums". Hope this helps. testing on the sim. Just the fact that you did graduate and fullfill those requirements. You should get good at making stuff. When your troubleshooting skills improve. The schools are very behind with changing their corriculum to teach people what really matters.