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Mechanical Engineers

What they do?

Mechanical engineers perform some or all of the following duties:

A. Supervise technicians, technologists and other engineers and review and approve designs, calculations and cost estimates.

B. Conduct research into the feasibility, design, operation and performance of mechanisms, components and systems

C. Plan and manage projects, and prepare material, cost and timing estimates, reports and design specifications for machinery and systems

D. Design power plants, machines, components, tools, fixtures and equipment

E. Analyze dynamics and vibrations of mechanical systems and structures

F. Supervise and inspect the installation, modification and commissioning of mechanical systems at construction sites or in industrial facilities

G. Develop maintenance standards, schedules and programs and provide guidance to industrial maintenance crews

Where they find work?

Consulting firms
Power-generating utilities
Manufacturing, processing, and transportation industries

What education do I need?

1. You usually need a university degree in mechanical engineering or in a related field of engineering.

2. You may also need a master's degree or doctorate in a related engineering field.

3. You need a licence from a provincial/territorial association of professional engineers to approve engineering drawings/reports and to practise as a professional engineer (P. Eng.).

4. As an engineer, you are eligible for registration following graduation from an accredited educational program, after three or four years of supervised work experience in engineering, and after passing a professional practice examination.

5. With experience, you can move up the ranks to become a supervisor.

6. Most recent entrants have an undergraduate university degree.

High School Subject that will help:

1. Math
2. English
3. Physics
4. Chemistry

What can you expect to make:

The average hourly wages for Mechanical Engineers is $29.83/HR, which is close to the average for occupations in the natural and applied sciences and related occupations and close to the average for all professional occupations. These wages grew at an average rate from 2002 to 2004.

Average Wage

Mechanical Engineers wages

Expected Wage by Age

Mechanical Engineers Wage By Age


4% of Mechanical Engineers are unemployed. This rate is close to the average for professionnal occupations.


Mechanical Engineers Unemployment

Trends in Unemployment

Mechanical Engineers Trends in Unemployment

Current Job Outlook:

The job outlook for Mechanical Engineers is considered Above Average because:

1. Employment grew at an above-average rate.

2. Hourly wages ($29.83) are above the average ($18.07), and the rate of wage growth is close to the average.

3. The unemployment rate (4%) is close to the 2004 average (7%).

Future Job Prospects:

Your job outlook will continue to be Above Average because:

1. The employment growth rate will likely be above average. The rise in the Canadian dollar and the increase in international competitiveness are pushing manufacturers to adopt new technologies.

2. Although the retirement rate will likely be average, the number of retiring workers should contribute to job openings.

3. The number of job seekers will likely exceed the number of job openings. This will not be significant enough to have an impact on the work prospects.

Highest Concetration:

The highest concentrations (per 10,000 people) of Mechanical Engineers are found in Alberta and Ontario while the lowest concentrations are in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.

Unionization Rate:

The unionization rate (19%) is below the average (32%) for all occupations.

Useful Experience:

1. Project management

2. Team project work

3. Proposal writing

Part Time Workers

Mechanical Engineers Part Time Workers

Part time workers:

3% of Mechanical Engineers are employed only on a part-time basis. There were 36,100 workers employed in these occupations in 2004, an increase of 60% since 1997.

Age Demographics

Mechanical Engineers Age Demographics

Age Demographics:

The relatively low percentage of younger workers suggests few entry-level job openings, and could point to a greater need for workers with experience or a number of years of training. The retirement rate to 2009 will likely be average reflecting the age/retirement structure of the occupation.

Self Employed

Mechanical Engineers Self Employed

Self Employed:

Roughly 12% of Mechanical Engineers are self-employed. This is considered Average for the industry as a whole.

Men vs Women

Mechanical Engineers Men vs Women

Men vs Women:

6% of the individuals employed as Mechanical Engineers are women. Compared to other industries, this is Below average.