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Is it possible to get a into a Master of Engineering Management, with a BS in Finance

Veteran

Jeffrey Epstein Wayne, PA

Prior to joining the Navy I had a BS in Finance. After 6 years as a NAV ET I gotta position as an instrumentation / automation tech at an oil refinery for 5 years and now have a Test Engineer with the government. In terms of advancing my career, I find myself in a weird place. My education is in the business world which I have been away from for over a decade, and now in the engineering world with out a engineering degree. Any advice, ideas, or thoughts are welcome. Thanks in advance.

26 November 2021 7 replies Career Advancement

Answers

Advisor

Jason Aepli Springfield, VA

Hi Jeff,

To be frank, an Engineering Management degree has little value. It’ll teach you business but not to the level of an MBA. It’ll teach you some tangential engineering concepts like risk management, project management, etc. but won’t give you the technical knowledge an engineering degree will. I suggest going after either an MBA or an engineering degree and not something that tries to blend both. As someone who has both an M.S. in Electrical Engineering and a Master of Engineering Management I can say from personal experience the engineering management degree was a complete waste of money.

Best of luck!

30 November 2021 Helpful answer

Advisor

Joe Engle Indianapolis, IN

Hello Jeffrey. I have a degree in engineering and an MBA after that. I would say there are a few ways to look at your situation. Keep in mind that much of what follows depends on your personal situation and desires...

One view is that they are SEPARATE education and skill levels. Business and Engineering. As you seem to enjoy engineering, and are making a living at it, you could see the business education as a fall back position at some time in the future. That is, sometime if you lose interest in engineering (or it loses you to layoff!!) , you may prefer to go back to the finance or business path. Your business degree would be like an insurance policy or ace up your sleeve for the future.

The other approach you could take is how to utilize both educations and skills TOGETHER. The two sets 'finance' and 'engineering' do not generally come together in one person. That said, 'business' and 'engineering' DO merge at several positions. One is project/product management, where the manager must take into account the needs of the business, as well as the engineering requirements. Another such position is engineering management, i.e. managing an engineering group and related budgets, and reporting to upper management. Finally, at the highest levels, particularly in engineering companies, the upper management (i.e. CEO, COO) may be engineers with MBAs or business degrees. At these high levels, understanding the business AND the company's engineering expertise are highly valued.

I presume your finance degree required quite a few general business courses, maybe management, sales, marketing, etc. Unless you become interested in a pure Finance position, I think you might be better served, by emphasizing your BUSINESS DEGREE...maybe describing it as having a concentration in finance. A general business degree might open more doors, that you are interested in. Whereas saying Finance Degree, might reduce the number of doors for you!

I hope I was able to show you a few paths, and ideas.

Thanks for your service,
Joe

27 November 2021 Helpful answer

Veteran

Michael Del Vecchio Killingworth, CT

Hi Jeff,

My short answer is probably not. Finance and engineering are too diverse subject areas. I finished a BS in mechanical engineering and a AS in computer science (thanks GI bill). My job experience after military service was that engineering positons are subject to job and market vagaries - I saw many engineer layoffs. My career eventually got me to a senior project manager position then chief technical officer at a Fortune 500 company division. The financial basics I needed manage a larger organization came through hard knocks and SME's on staff. My sense is gettting some experience in the civilian world and a project manager certification will be more useful and may get you there. Best of luck.

Advisor

FRANCIS TEPEDINO, ESQ. San Diego, CA

Engineering Management? What is that?

My suggestion: Get a degree in Engineering: that I would understand. Then perhaps an MBA or far better still, a Juris Doctor from an accredited Law School.

Advisor

Jerry Welsh Middleville, MI

Jeffery,
The question really lies with you and where do you want go from a career perspective. Education and experience are always nice to have match, but STEM careers are in very high demand. Keep in mind any employer is looking at you from their gain, you are in charge of your career and focusing on moving in the direction you wish.
Where do you feel qualified in finance at this time? A degree without experience will put you at entry level. From the sounds of your current career, you are not at entry level. You mentioned you are with the government, does this include a potential pension and benefits in retirement. Why do I ask, those two factors are the main foundation of retirement, and I realize you are asking a career question. Are there opportunities for growth with the sector of the govt you are in? What would a degree offer to your career enhancement? These are questions you need to research, discuss with other professionals in your field (Informational Interview) etc.
Keep in mind, your value to an employer is what they feel you bring to the table for them. This should be paramount in your decision making, you have a huge plus and that is you are past transitioning, you are in the non-military sector, not looking to transition. You are in the drivers seat, as long as you are employed. Employers like to hire people who are employed, go figure. With that said, do your research, determine what value you bring to each career you look at and make sure you understand the employers requirement. I have attached a couple of articles, based upon transitioning military, but research is research, networking is networking. God Bless https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/come-prepared-transition-process-gap-between-civilian-jerry-welsh/
https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/when-more-right-jerry-welsh/

Advisor

Richard Byrne Hillsborough, NJ

This describes an online program from NJIT
https://www.njit.edu/academics/degree/ms-engineering-management-online

This describes the purpose ... and has links to admissions
https://www.njit.edu/academics/degree/ms-engineering-management

This person is listed at the bottom of the above web page as an academic advisor,
perhaps you could call or send an email regarding your eligibility. :

Bladikas, Athanassios
Associate Professor, Mechanical and Industrial Engr
athanassios.bladikas@njit.edu
973-596-3653

(American Society for Engineering Management)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Society_for_Engineering_Management

Engineering Management Programs List:
https://www.asem.org/EM-Program-List
You can click on Pennsylvania in the above URL to see Pa programs:
https://www.asem.org/EM-Program-List#PA

You might find useful information on one of my webpages at
http://eehot.com/ee.html#schools

Advisor

Robin Schlinger Atlanta, GA

I am a resume writer and career coach - became one after getting a BSChE in Chemical Engineering from MIT and practicing as a Chemical Engineer for 20 years. My career included 10 years at an oil company (including 4 years as a Senior Planning Analyst - a financial position). I may be able to help you explore various career paths so you can decide whether going back to school for an engineering degree makes sense for you.

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