Approximately 11,700 marine engineers and naval architects are employed in the United States. Marine engineers work for government agencies and departments (such as the U.S. Navy; U.S. Coast Guard; U.S. Marine Corps; U.S. Merchant Marine, and U.S. Army), defense contractors, private contractors that build water vessels and infrastructure, petroleum companies, firms that do oceanography research, and consulting firms. Some marine engineers work as private consultants and college professors. Many employers are located near coastal areas, although opportunities can be found throughout the country. States with the highest number of marine engineers (in descending order) are Virginia, Texas, Maryland, Washington, and Massachusetts.
Many marine engineers obtain their first jobs as a result of contacts made through college internships. Others find job leads from networking events, college career services offices, employment Web sites, and newspaper want ads. Additionally, professional associations, such as the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers provide job listings on their Web sites. Those who want to work for the federal government should visit the U.S. Office of Personnel Management’s Web site, https://www.usajobs.gov.
As marine engineers obtain more experience they are given greater responsibilities and tougher problems to solve. Some engineers advance to become engineering project managers, or they advance to the position of chief engineer, who has responsibility for the entire project. Others become business executives, private consultants, or college professors.
Tips for Entry
Check out the Web site for the American Society for Engineering Education, http://www.asee.org, and the Marine Technology Society, https://www.mtsociety.org to learn more about marine engineering.
Work with your college career counselor to find internships and job openings in marine engineering.
Visit the following Web sites for job listings:
Attend industry conferences to network and to interview for jobs.