Am I Too Old to Get An Engineering Degree?

I am 38 y/o female thinking about returning to school and possibly getting a degree in engineering. I do not know much about the field and wondering if I'm too old to get a degree and returning to work. Furthermore, I was never good at math I loved science in high school. Please I need
some advise.

Latoya
posted by Latoya, Oakdale on April 27, 2014

Answer by Lauren Helland

Hi Latoya -

So glad to hear from you! Though it is my personal opinion, I do not believe you are ever too old to get a new degree or start a new career. Though I was considered a "traditional student", starting college right after I graduated from high school, I had several college peers that were over the age of 35 starting or continuing their degree in engineering. Most of which had backgrounds that had nothing to do with engineering. And they now have very successful careers in engineering! 

A very basic description of engineering is problem solving. Be it environmental, structural, civil or whatever problem solving, that is (very basically) what engineers do. I found math associated with engineering was much more practical and "visually oriented" once you start getting into calculus and differential equations. Being that you love science, I believe the understanding of math will come with time as they tend to go hand in hand. 

Engineering is a very broad field, so the best thing to do now is to just get familiar with what your options are and potentially narrow down what aspect of engineering you are most interested in (for example, environmental, civil, structural, chemical, geological, petroleum, etc). Talking with people that are working engineers, or connecting with professors/teachers at local universities and colleges is a great way to become more familiar with your options. There is a lot of information on the internet as well. 

When you get to a point where you think you might know what you want to do, start researching schools. I used College Board to research schools based on degree, cost, and location: https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/college-search?navid=gh-cs. Contacting the faculty of the department you are interested in, is also a great way to become more familiar with the area of study you are interested in pursuing.

I hope this helps! I know once you decide what you want to do, everything will fall into place! Best of luck!