Engineering is a large field that encompasses a massive number of different disciplines including civil, chemical, environmental and aerospace engineering. These disciplines are unified by a common way of thinking and problem solving. A key trait of engineering is simplifying complex systems to smaller fundamental component, eliminating irrelevant components and condensing the important parts into problems that can be solved through mathematical simulation models. Unlike scientist who rely on experiments for their data, an engineer defaults to a model, which while less accurate in exceptional cases, they are useful for designing products and understanding systems.
Engineers work in a wide variety of field depending on their disciplines. They can be employed as hands on workers, associating closely with laborers and technicians to provide professional expertise on a project, or they can remain in a lab designing and refining models.
To succeed as an engineer you must enjoy being challenged by complex problems to which the solution is not immediately apparent. As noted earlier in the paper, an important skill is the ability to dissect and conceptualize multifaceted systems. Without this, an engineer will fail. Once that task is accomplished, it is generally a matter of applying an existing model or mathematical theory to understand the motion or action of each component.
Clearly perseverance and dedication are key attributes as a problem of this nature can often be very difficult to understand and long hours may be spent without any progress. In addition, a strong mathematical and analytic background is crucial.
Finally, teamwork and communication skills are important for an engineer. Even in the case where an engineer is working alone, his conclusions and results are essentially useless unless he can transmit them in an intelligible manner to his manager or superiors.