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Mechanical Engineer

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Bachelor's degree

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What They Do

Mechanical Engineers Career Video

About This Career

Performs engineering duties in planning and designing tools, engines, machines, and other mechanically functioning equipment. Oversees installation, operation, maintenance, and repair of equipment such as centralized heat, gas, water, and steam systems.

This career is part of the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics cluster Engineering and Technology pathway.

A person in this career:

  • Reads and interprets blueprints, technical drawings, schematics, or computer-generated reports.
  • Researches, designs, evaluates, installs, operates, or maintains mechanical products, equipment, systems or processes to meet requirements.
  • Confers with engineers or other personnel to implement operating procedures, resolve system malfunctions, or provide technical information.
  • Investigates equipment failures or difficulties to diagnose faulty operation and recommend remedial actions.
  • Develops, coordinates, or monitors all aspects of production, including selection of manufacturing methods, fabrication, or operation of product designs.
  • Develops or tests models of alternate designs or processing methods to assess feasibility, sustainability, operating condition effects, potential new applications, or necessity of modification.
  • Specifies system components or directs modification of products to ensure conformance with engineering design, performance specifications, or environmental regulations.
  • Recommends design modifications to eliminate machine or system malfunctions.
  • Assists drafters in developing the structural design of products, using drafting tools or computer-assisted drafting equipment or software.
  • Oversees installation, operation, maintenance, or repair to ensure that machines or equipment are installed and functioning according to specifications.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Application Engineer
  • Design Engineer — Researches and develops ideas for new products and production systems.
  • Design Maintenance Engineer
  • Equipment Engineer
  • Mechanical Design Engineer
  • Process Engineer — Develops and optimizes economical industrial processes to make the huge range of products on which modern society depends.
  • Product Engineer
  • Project Engineer
  • Test Engineer


  • Email Support
  • 1-800-GO-TO-XAP (1-800-468-6927)
    From outside the U.S., please call +1 (424) 750-3900
  • North Dakota Career Resource Network
    ndcrn@nd.gov | (701) 328-9733