With all the new advances in vehicle technology, there has never been a better time to get a degree in automotive engineering! Washington is home to two schools with this program. Both school's award Bachelor's degrees and Master's degrees, and one school also has a PhD program. The average cost of tuition is $15,500 per year.
If you have no prior education in engineering, you can start with an Associate's degree or Bachelor's degree. However, a Bachelor's degree may be the better choice if you want to go straight into an engineering career after graduation. You'll spend four years in school taking courses like Vehicle Diagnostics, Automotive Electronics, and Aerodynamics. In addition to taking dedicated lab courses, most of your theoretical engineering classes will include a lab portion. You can work with engineering materials, engineering techniques, and vehicle components while in the engineering lab.
Do your future goals include working in the research sector? If so, plan on earning a Master's degree or PhD. A graduate degree takes about two years, while a PhD takes an average of seven years. Advanced courses at this level include Advanced Combustion, Automotive Body Structures, and Power Electronics.
Although there are only two automotive engineering schools in Washington, it is still important to evaluate your tuition and financial aid options. Western Washington University is the less-expensive school in Washington. Tuition is $7,503 per year for residents and $18,392 for non-residents. Washington State University has considerably higher tuition costs. Residents pay $11,396 in tuition each year and non-residents spend $24,478 on tuition each year.
You can look for scholarships and grants to cover many of your educational costs. At Washington State University, you can apply for the Clayton T. Crowe Scholarship, the Servet Duran Scholarship, and the Homer J. Dana Memorial Scholarship.
Upon graduating from your automotive engineering program in Washington, you can apply for your license through the Washington State Department of Licensing. To earn your license, you must pass the Principles & Practice of Engineering exam.
In general, automotive engineering salaries in Washington are higher than the national average. O*Net reports that the average salary is $89,200 per year. You may be able to increase your earning potential by attending networking events and continuing your education. The Washington Society of Professional Engineers allows you to tackle both of these goals.