AddedTuesday, September 26, 2017 at 10:02 PM

Choosing between chemical or mechanical

Hello, I'm stuck on choosing between Chemical and Mechanical Engineering and I need some help deciding. I am a senior in High school and college applications will begin in October so I need advice fast. I love chemistry and I think this will be a good career choice but I also heard it is the hardest Engineering and only have two universities that offer it that I will most likely get accepted to. I want to do mechanical because it is one of the more broad types so I'm not sure which one to chose. I also have more options for mechanical because there are more universities that offer this major. I want something that I can work in the medical field with medicine, healthcare products or just anything in the medical field because that is what I want to work with. Which one is better for medical work between chemical or mechanical because I don't want to do Biomedical. Thank you and please reply fast.
Related to Chemical, Choosing a Degree, Difficult Classes, Engineering Branches, Machines, Materials, Mechanical, Medicine, Merging Fields, Work Environment
  • Tricia Berry , The University of Texas at Austin
    Answered Monday, October 30, 2017 at 5:28 PM
    Carolina: First off, you have narrowed to two types of engineering that are broad and have many applications and career pathways in the areas of medicine, healthcare products, etc. Usually those with more of an interest in chemistry head towards the Chemical Engineering path and those with more of an interest in physics head towards the Mechanical Engineering path. So my first question would be do you enjoy chemistry more or physics more...or both equally. If you enjoy one over the other, that might help in your decision. If you like both equally, let's look at other aspects to help you in your decision. 
    The "hardness of a major" varies by person - if you enjoy chemistry and are good at chemistry, you may find Mechanical Engineering more challenging. But if you're better at physics, you might find Chemical Engineering more challenging. All engineering majors are challenging...but all engineering is all about problem solving, sticking with it, figuring things out, and moving forward. You'll have hard classes in any major - it's about finding resources to help you, tutoring, professors, etc. 
    To further help with the choice, I'd suggest looking at the electives and classes you'd take with each major at the universities you are considering. Chemical Engineering at one university may look super different from Chemical Engineering at another university. Same for Mechanical Engineering. See what classes you would take and which majors may have electives related to healthcare or medicine at the universities you are exploring.
    In the end, either major you choose can lead to a pathway into the medical field. Both majors are needed!