What Do Aerospace Engineers Do?


Aerospace engineers specialize in the design and testing of high-performance vehicles.

Unique know-how in aerodynamics, structures, propulsion, and flight mechanics are most often applied to improve or develop aircraft and spacecraft.

Employment opportunities - doing analysis, design, testing, simulation, and research - exist in the defense, government, commercial, and private sectors.

Spin-off employment opportunities exist in industries that demand lightweight and optimized performance products. As a result, aerospace engineers also work in the automotive (including racing), energy, and medical fields.

Information from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics web site reveals there are just around 79,000 aerospace engineers in the US, earning a median income of about $104,000/year. Many of these professionals are nearing retirement!

WSU is a great place to learn about aerospace engineering. We have an outstanding academic program, with great labs and many opportunities to learn by doing. You can expect a good mix of theory, experiment, computation, and design.

The city is full of airplane companies and opportunities. WSU has many extremely successful graduates (including a Boeing vice president, test pilots, a Space Ship One/Two engineer, a White House advisor, UAV designers, NASA researchers, and industry engineers).

If you like the idea of designing and testing exciting things – like airplanes, helicopters, rockets, missiles, spacecraft, racecars, and wind turbines - then aerospace engineering is for you!  It is a challenging, innovative, and rewarding career.