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Advait Khedkar
Advait Khedkar • Sep 13, 2018

What should I do after Engineering?

I am currently in my 3rd year of IT Engg, and I cannot decide, whether to do MS through GRE,MTECH through GATE,MBA through CAT or a Job through college placements.

My concerns are as follows

GRE:-Financial factors and Culture shock

GATE:-Competition and chances of success

MBA:-Similar to gate, competition. And the "everyone does this" problem

Job:-I fear if me not doing masters will affect and hamper my career in job life too.

I am financially mediocre, and I have no personal inclination towards any option! 

And I study in MITCOE,Pune

Kaustubh Katdare
Kaustubh Katdare • Sep 13, 2018

You've asked a very important question, @Advait . I think a lot of engineering students face this question but never bother to ask. Thank you for describing your confusion because it helps others understand what you've been thinking. Let's look at the options that you mentioned. 

GRE / MS

In my opinion, GRE is beginning to lose its shine in the recent years. The Trump administration in US has instilled a fear of uncertainty among the foreign national students about job prospects after GRE.

There were times when GRE would more or less guarantee a job in the US and followed by citizenship. However, the times seem to be changing these days. 

I'm not sure what are you referring to by 'Culture Shock', but finance continues to be a major challenge for most middle-class families. There are ways to fix this problem using educational loans, but I personally am against recommending them. The reason is the job future of jobs for foreign nationals in the US is uncertain. 

If you wish to opt for GRE, I'd strongly recommend taking a mock GRE test and see your score. If you 'believe' that it's something you can crack and get into a good University, go for it. It'd still be worth it. 

GATE / M.Tech

My opinion is that GATE is only for those who've been scoring at least 60% throughout their engineering years. Otherwise, there is no point in pursuing an advanced degree in engineering; when there was 'struggle' scoring in the basic engineering degree. Makes sense, right?

You'll have to carefully examine the career prospects after getting M.Tech degree. Most of my friends who went through this career option either got into teaching career OR got placed into highly specialised jobs. 

I must mention that they all got into top 15 engineering colleges in India famous for M.Tech and had a proven track record of placements. 

If you are willing to try your luck at GATE, take the mock GATE exam and see your national score. If you believe you've a chance of cracking into the top 1500, GATE is something you might want to consider.

A word of caution: You need to decide on this option only when you are convinced that the career prospects after GATE are something you are genuinely interested in. 

MBA 

One of the most popular career avenues after engineering that most students have been preferring these days. Here's a thing about MBA that most students don't understand - you've to get into a very good college (again, top 15) in order to get a decent job. 

I've a strong bias over opting for MBA only after 2-4 years of professional work experience. It not only enhances your placement opportunities after getting the diploma or degree in management, but also gives you a clearer idea of the industry. 

You are in 3rd year of engineering and have ample time at your disposal. Try taking a mock entrance test and see if you feel confident of cracking it. 

Recommended Reading: https://www.crazyengineers.com/threads/the-great-mba-ms-mtech-dilemma.3057/

Post Graduation / Masters & Job Prospects : A Myth!

Let me make it really short and sweet for everyone reading this: Post graduation does *not* mean you'll get a better job prospect. The kind of job you will get totally depends upon -

  • Your engineering score
  • Overall skills-set
  • Industry opportunities
  • Hiring company
  • Your overall performance with the employer

A lot of students believe that getting a masters degree will put them ahead of their peers. It doesn't work like that. Only if you are qualified enough to get into a top college; you can expect a big shift in role, salary and designation. 

You've to evaluate the 'Opportunity Cost'. That is, what exactly are you getting for your investment. The investment for post-graduation or masters degree should be calculated in terms of -

  • Time: You'll invest at least 1 year into getting PG. Can this time be invested somewhere else?
  • Money: Most PG courses costs upwards of 10 - 20 Lakh in Indian rupees. Can you afford it? Evaluate the burden of EMI way before you consider investing large sum into getting a PG degree.
  • Efforts: Entry into top college is not easy. Often requires at least 6 months to 1 year of hard work and dedication. Is this something you are mentally prepared to invest?

The return on investment has to be promising in order to go for PG. 

Job:- I fear if me not doing masters will affect and hamper my career in job life too.

I repeat - the best way to go for masters is after 2 years of professional experience. It will actually make your career prospects better. 

JOB

This is the end goal of all of the above, right? I mean, I'd guess that there would only be 0.03% of all engineers (I just made up that stat!) who are actually interested in further learning for the sake of gaining knowledge. 

For rest of the engineering clan out there, Job is what they're looking to get by any means. 

Logically thinking, if Job is the ultimate goal and all the other options lead the way to getting a job - why not focus on getting a job? 

Plus, there is no guarantee that opting for other options after engineering like MS, M.Tech, GRE, GATE, MBA will ensure a better job. 

So, how do you get a good job after engineering? 

Just look at the number of jobs available for engineers in our own Jobs Finder web app: https://www.crazyengineers.com/jobs/all . We're adding close to 300 - 400 new jobs on daily basis. None of these (or very few) actually demand getting a PG degree. 

Yet, engineers struggle to get a job right after engineering!

The main reason is, no engineering college actually prepares the engineering students for the industry. Even the internships don't work! 

Industry demands a different skills-set which only <1% of the graduating engineers possess. Those who are picked up from campus placements directly are actually trained for approximately 6 months before they are put on the right job. 

Such is the poor condition of engineering in India. 

When I went to a leading engineering college in Maharashtra for recruiting engineers  - I was shocked at the general lack of awareness about technologies and tools that the industry demands. Most couldn't even program beyond 'bubble sort' (WTF!) and thought most employees write sorting algorithms in industries. 

Something is terribly wrong!

My Recommendation:

I strongly recommend investing in developing skills! If you want to get into IT, start learning programming languages and tools. If you want to make sure that employers are beelining with job offers for you - make sure that you excel in complementary skills. 

That's what the industry demands. 

Invest in learning. You have the time and there are plenty of free and paid resources. Don't shy away from investing in online courses - because it's a small investment and you can reap benefits life-long. 

I hope this helps you a bit. If you have questions, ask them away. All the best!

PS: Share this on WhatsApp, Facebook and on other social media so that our engineering fellas get an eye opener!

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