Engineers build things, and those with a computer engineering degree are no exception. Computer engineers build computers of all sizes and specifications as well as workstations for businesses and organizations. They also build computer-based systems for cars, planes, appliances, phones, and many other products.
There are many areas of specialty within computer engineering degree programs, and these can lead to a variety of different career paths.
Hardware or Software?
Some computer engineers work mainly on building the systems and infrastructure of computer networks (hardware) while others work on the software that is used within the system to complete tasks. While there are jobs for both hardware engineers and software developers within the computer engineering field, many computer engineers work with both hardware and software together to create comprehensive systems that will meet an organization’s needs.
Currently, software engineers are in greater demand (17% predicted growth) than their hardware engineer counterparts (3% predicted growth). This is likely because software is updated more often than hardware. Several versions of a software program may be released to work on basically the same hardware, so there’s less motivation for companies to upgrade their hardware if it is still functioning well.
Product Development and Advancement
More and more products now have electronic components that are run by an internal processor, or computer. Computer engineers are needed to develop and create computer systems in products like smart appliances, video game consoles, and cars. Companies who make these products are always working toward coming up with better designs that have more capabilities than the ones that came before them, which means they will need computer engineers to keep coming up with newer and better designs for the computers inside those products.
Data collection, storage, and management is now done by most organizations for a variety of reasons. Database engineers build the systems that store this data and make it easy to retrieve and use when needed. New storage technologies have given database engineers plenty to work with when designing data management solutions, and the field is expected to grow 11 percent by 2024 to accommodate these needs.
Advanced Degrees and Teaching
Another path available to those with a computer engineering degree is to continue your education to receive an advanced degree and to teach at the college level. Advanced degrees allow graduates to specialize in more specific areas of computer engineering like fiber-optics, machine learning, or aerospace engineering, among others.
Earning an advanced degree may qualify you for supervisory positions within an organization, or you can use your advanced knowledge to become an educator at a college and teach computer engineering to the next generation. In some cases, a combination of the two is possible as well.
Florida Tech offers a bachelor of science in computer engineering with opportunities for internships, research opportunities, and hands-on learning in small classes for a personal touch. Click to learn more about our computer engineering program today!