So You Want to be an Engineer

What to Learn and What to Expect

So You Want to be an Engineer?
What to Learn and What to Expect

Ray Floyd and Richard Spencer


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Using the combined authors’ experience, this title provides students and engineers practical knowledge of what to expect as they enter the engineering field to pursue a career.  Besides students, it will also serve as a practical guide for guidance counselors and recent engineering graduates, and contains topics infrequently found in other introductory engineering texts such as mentoring, interviewing, intellectual property, and how to navigate the variety of career choices.  Every chapter contains a recommended reading list for additional information, and most chapters include problem-solving tasks that help students master the topic.



  • Focuses heavily on the fields of engineering, the career opportunities in each, and the skills needed once  students are on the job.
  • Designed for the introductory high school and college freshman-level course on careers in Engineering.
  • Raymond Floyd spent 26 years as a Senior Engineer at IBM, consulting with NASA on the development of the Saturn 5 Rocket (for trips to the moon ) and for the Department of Defense on the Anti-Ballistic Missile system.
  • Richard Spencer worked as a Senior Engineer and Manager for IBM for 38 years, primarily in the area of Product Testing.
  • There are several appendices, which include sample reports, presentations, test plans, and other examples  of skills employees will use on the job.

Raymond Floyd worked as an engineer and manager at IBM for 30 years, which included programming support for NASA's Apollo Program and the Department of Defense's Anti-Ballistic Missile Program. Prior to IBM, he worked as a Senior Instructor in Philco's Computer Division. He is currently an Adjunct Professor at Northwest College in Powell, Wyoming, developing and teaching courses in engineering, mathematics, computer systems, and programming. His undergraduate and Masters degrees are from Florida Atlantic University, and his Ph.D. is from California Coast University. He is also a graduate of the IBM Systems Research Institute.


Richard Spencer worked as a Senior Human Factors Engineer at IBM for over 30 years, where he focused on product planning, development, and testing, His responsibilities included consultant work for Hughes Traffic Management Systems for the Florida Department of Transportation and the testing of Automatic Vehicle Identification Systems for airports. He was also the project manager for internal courses at IBM and wrote IBM’s guide for product development and testing.


  • Engineering 101
  • Engineering Specialties
  • Product Development
  • Support Team
  • Military Engineering
  • Women in Engineering
  • Professional Engineer
  • Career Path Choices
  • Soft Skill Needs – Communications 101
  • Intellectual Property
  • Engineering Tools
  • Subjects of Interest
  • Sample Report Format
  • Sample Presentation
  • Sample Test Plan
  • Sample Test Script
  • Sample Market Requirements Document
  • Sample Engineering Specification
  • Standards Organizations
  • Sample Resume
  • ABET Program
  • Index