Victoria Coverstone

Victoria Coverstone

Prof. and Associate Head of Aerospace Engineering
University of Illinois
Victoria Coverstone
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Answers by Dr. Victoria Coverstone

Hello Julia,

Some universities offer an undergraduate degree in Technology and Engineering Management.

These programs tend to be extremely competitive and are typically degrees that are co-taught between engineering and business colleges.

Students that complete these types of degrees have little difficulty receiving job offers upon graduation.

Alternatively, many engineering managers begin their careers with an engineering degree and after working a few years in industry, go back to college to earn a master’s in business administration.

Whichever path you choose to follow to become an engineering manager, remember that possessing a hard work ethic, a positive attitude and being a good team member will make you a valuable graduate!

Best of luck to you!

Learning any profession most likely has frustrating experiences during the training period. I found aerospace engineering to be no different. The math and physic knowledge that one needs to be a good aerospace engineer is broad so start taking these types of classes as soon as you feel prepared. The frustration felt during the learning period eventually leads to understanding and eventually to confidence in your technical skills. Aerospace engineering is an exciting and challenging career that I believe is well worth enduring the frustration along the way.
All my best to you in pursuing your dreams.


Dear Nathalie, Congratulations on doing well in the challenging aerospace engineering curriculum. You should be proud of your accomplishments and have confidence in your abilities. I recommend that you consider an internship during the summer after your sophomore year. This way, you will have completed some technical coursework and this is a good time to begin considering what you would like to do after you complete your BS degree. Start looking into companies this fall, since many of them will hire in the fall for the coming summer. Also, this leaves you the spring to continue to look, if you can not locate the internship in the fall. Not all internships require programming, so explore multiple opportunities in the traditional aerospace companies, NASA and government laboratories. I wish you the best of luck.

Dear Nerissa, The willingness to work hard and to be a team player is every bit as important in the engineering industry as having a mastery of engineering fundamentals. If you want to be an engineer, then I encourage you to go for it! You can always learn outside of the traditional classrooms and catch-up on any background material that you think you might be missing. The skills and talents that you bring to our profession are needed. And yes I had similar feelings as an undergraduate but most of those feelings were unfounded in the long-run because I did land my dream job. Good luck in the coming academic year!