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Career decisions

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by ryan22re, Apr 15, 2007.

  1. ryan22re

    ryan22re 1/2 ton status

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    Need some advice.

    I've been contemplating going back to school and finishing my engineering degree. I've basically got three options. One is more risky than the other two. I'm pretty happy where I am now. I make good money (getting close to 50k a year) and have excellent benefits. My work will pay for tuition/books if I pass.

    Option 1: finish my degree in mechanical engineering. Could continue working where I work (probably). I'm already two years into a degree in ME. Dunno what will transfer to my prospective school, but I'd imagine that I would have 4-5 years of school left if i go part time (only option right now).

    Option 2: get a degree in electrical engineering. I've already got a very strong mechanical background, so that would make me more marketable as an EE. I could continue working where I work (probably). It would take me 5-6 years of part time work to accomplish this.

    Option 3: forget school and open up my own auto repair shop. I could continue working where I work until things take off (maybe 2-3 years). My wife has very good benefits at work, so health insurance would be covered. I've got a pretty decent selection of tools, and some decent connections for acquiring some shop equipment.

    Basically, the time invested in all three ventures would be the same. The only plus to the degree is that work pays for it. But, that is also contingent on me working for my company until I finish my degree, plus 12 months after that or I will have to give some money back. I guess it also depends on me getting accepted to the university also, but I'm pretty confident that I could get in. I sent an info request last week, but still haven't heard anything.

    I'd probably be more happy about working on cars, than sitting behind a desk all day. But would definitly be more work (or less), running my own shop. I could probably start working on my shop right now, instead of waiting till the fall for school. So if it works, I'd be much closer to where I want to be finacially in the next 5-6 years. Suggestions?
     
  2. readymix

    readymix 3/4 ton status

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    Personally I would do #3.

    That is kind of what I am planning upon retirement.
     
  3. cbbr

    cbbr 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    If someone else will pay for it, get the degree. You can always open a shop if you have a degree. Get hurt so that you need a job though, and that degree may come in useful...
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2007
  4. dogdaysunrise

    dogdaysunrise 1/2 ton status

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    I agree man. Get someone else to pay for the degree? That almost doesnt seem like an option to me. See if you can get both out of work. Get either of the 2 but get one. The oppurtunity to start your own buisness will always be there.
     
  5. roadnotca

    roadnotca 3/4 ton status

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    Ask yourself, is anybody asking "When are you going to open your own shop?" You'll need to be harder on yourself than the street will be.:bow:
     
  6. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

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    get the degree. I'd absolutely do that if it were me. Time of course sucks, but a bad back and knees sucks too.
     
  7. newyorkin

    newyorkin 1 ton status

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    I'd go with Option 2. A shop can come and go, but if you have a degree you'll be more versatile. Besides, you'll wish you had the desk job after doing bloody knuckle work starts taking a toll on your body. Young and indestructible doesn't last forever!
     
  8. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

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    I'm 21 and feel like crap, hate to think what I will feel like when I'm my Dad's age. Probably make the same growns getting in and out of chairs that he does...
     
  9. 1-tonmudder

    1-tonmudder 1/2 ton status

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    I don't know the vocation of the other posters,but I myself am self employed.I worked in and managed a garage for a while and you will have to deal with every kind of person imaginable.The hard part is and will be surviving until you get a steady clientel.When I went out on my own I hustled like my ass was on fire,but nearly four years later it's hard for me to maintain that kind of hustle/self motivation.

    On the upside I can set my own schedule,if my son has a field trip I am able to go or if I want to go eat lunch with him I can.BUT if you get lazy and slack it won't take long before it catches up with you.Self employment has 0 security,and alot of times 0 retirement.

    In the 5-6 years it's going to take get thru school you could have an established/profitable buisness,or you could have gone broke and be back working a public job for less money.
     
  10. 1979jimmy350

    1979jimmy350 1/2 ton status

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    get the ME degree, it is one of the hardest undergrad degrees there is but it is well woth it. Are you wanting to work in the auto industry?
     
  11. After Ours

    After Ours 1/2 ton status

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    I worked for the phone company for 8yrs before I started my own shop.
    Regrets...every now and then I find an old paycheck and cry. I wish I had put a little more $ away, but I had to jump ship quick.
    Advantages...I work and make money, I work harder and make more money..I am happy,
    The security thing is an issue, but I look at it like this, if an oppurtunity comes up I can jump at it, be it a road trip or an odd business opp. I made $30 hr at the phone company, it was secure and I would never starve, but thats it....I new what tommorow brought. Now I have no clue and its kind off cool.
    So get the degree, save a little and go for your own thing, just be prepared to eat PB n J for 3-5 years. Way to many people waste away at secure jobs. Nothing is secure nowadays. Live life...I sound like a F@#@in after school special....I know my name is steven.
     
  12. AZ79K5Project

    AZ79K5Project 1/2 ton status

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    What's your drive? What gets you up in the day with the attitude "I get to do... today."

    Not many people get to do what they really want and they sacrifice one thing for another. My dad had health problems most of my life until he passed away 11 years ago. He enjoyed life when he could. He found a job that he enjoyed. The job was OK, but the people and freedom made up for the shortfalls. More importantly, he had a job that gave him time away, which he lived for. Boating, short vacations, trips to Vegas, Laughlin, etc.

    I have a job that most of the time, I look forward going to. Not always. My job kept me from going on the last two local meet and greets and takes me away from family events all too often.

    I started on a 2nd degree a few years ago. Employer paid. I was going towards ME or EE as well. Had to stop because of kids. I'm starting in a master's program this fall.

    Find out what drives you and what you really want to do and go for it. Markets change everyday. A good market today can really suck in 5 years.

    just my $0.02 (more like $2.00) Good luck
     
  13. ryan22re

    ryan22re 1/2 ton status

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    A guy at work came to me last night and asked me if I could do some side work for him. I couldn't do it. I don't have a place to do it. Tune up, water pump, some suspension work on an LT1 camaro. He's the kind of guy that would give me plenty of work if I could do a good job for him.

    I have pretty much decided to go back to school, and just piddle on the side (busted knuckles, sore back) just to keep me happy. I'm leaning very much towards the degree in EE. I still haven't heard from the univerisity yet.

    Thanks for the input fellas.
     
  14. cbbr

    cbbr 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Getting a degree opens new doors, but does not close any. Failing to get the degree keeps them closed.
     
  15. roadnotca

    roadnotca 3/4 ton status

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    It would be really trick if you could cover both EE and ME. :D
     
  16. ryan22re

    ryan22re 1/2 ton status

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    Looks like I may lose my chance at a free education. Looks like they are planning on selling off our division.

    http://money.cnn.com/news/newsfeeds/articles/newstex/AFX-0013-15921493.htm

    I read in another article it was a group of investors that would just hack up the company and sell off the pieces, but read that others would be interested in keeping us whole. Guess I'll find out soon enough. Board meeting in Germany on the 25th.

    Maybe I'm jumping the gun on this one, but we'll see.
     

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