Beginning your mechanical engineering career starts with attending one of the 10 engineering schools in South Carolina. Eight of these schools offer Associate’s degrees in mechanical engineering and three of the schools offer Bachelor’s degrees in mechanical engineering. Three schools offer Master’s and doctoral degrees in this field.
If you want to start out with an Associate’s degree in mechanical engineering, you should plan on spending two years in school. This degree includes 60 credits in mechanical engineering and general education courses.
A Bachelor’s degree takes most people between four and five years to complete, as it encompasses 120 to 130 credits. Some of the courses you may take at this level include Engineering and Technology, Introduction to Mechanical Engineering, and Component Design.
If you already have a Bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, you may be considering a Master’s degree or PhD. Master’s degrees typically take two years of full-time study or three years of part-time study. PhD programs require full-time study; you may be able to complete this degree in five to seven years.
The average cost of tuition in South Carolina is $12,100. However, your cost of tuition may be lower if you attend a two-year institution or public college.
You can also lower your tuition costs by applying for scholarships. ASME awards multiple scholarships, some of which are worth over $10,000, to engineering students across the country.
Another opportunity is the South Carolina Society of Professional Engineers. This society awards to scholarships of $1000 each year.
After you have graduated from your mechanical engineering program, the next step is applying to take the Fundamentals of Engineering exam. Passing this exam allows you to apply for licensure through the South Carolina State Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Surveyors. Once you have filled out your application and submitted your transcript, the board may award you your license.