There are often many different paths that you can take to reach a certain career destination. For example, if you want to design prosthetics, you most likely have a number of options for how to get there. However, there are certain considerations that you can keep in mind to give yourself the best chances.
So my short answer is that yes, you could probably get a job designing prosthetics with a degree in materials engineering. But here are a few things to keep in mind:
- If you can, try to find a materials engineering program that offers a certification or specialization in biomedical, or that offers coursework focused on that area. At the very least, if you pick a school with a strong biomedical program, even if your degree is in materials, you would probably have some good resources at your disposal to gain experience in that area.
- Alternatively, some schools have biomedical engineering programs where you can specialize in materials science (even though your degree would be in biomedical).
- In whatever program you end up in, try to meet people who specialize in prosthetics if you can. See if you can work in their lab, or talk to them about coursework options, etc. It's often just as (or even more) important that you make the right connections to help lead you on the right path than pick the right major.
Hope this helps, and best of luck to you!
PhD, Materials Science and Engineering