Metallurgical Engineering (BS)
What is A Metallurgical Engineering (BS) Degree?
Metallurgical Engineers use science and math to solve problems, problems involving metals—finding them, extracting them, and then designing useful products based on the properties of each. Alloys are made by combining two or more metals for greater strength, temperature resistance, flexibility, durability, etc. needed for the intended use. Most metallurgical engineers focus on one stage of this overall process, things like the mining process–specializing in finding the metal ore along with ways to mine the ore economically and effectively. Or they might specialize in the extraction process, that is, finding ways to separate-out (extract) the metals that are needed from the ore produced in mining. Or they could specialize in physical metallurgy which involves creating alloys for new uses by combining various metals.
To prepare to be a metallurgical engineer you will need to earn at least a Bachelor’s degree in Metallurgical Engineering (BS). In the program, you’ll get a good grounding in math and the physical sciences, and then move on to develop basic skills in each of the specialty areas of mining, extraction, and alloys. You’ll learn research techniques and have involvement in laboratory work. You may be able to then focus one of the processes, especially if your school is associated with a particular industry in which you would have hands-on experiences. Most programs require four years of study, but may be a year or more longer, depending upon how much experience you have in the field. Since many employers are looking for experienced engineers, a cooperative education program is a real plus. With the BS degree you’ll be prepared for positions such as Metallurgical Engineer, Metallurgist, Welding Engineer, Process Engineer, and Quality Materials Engineer and should earn a substantial salary.