Drafting and Design Engineer Employment Opportunities
Employment opportunities are available for drafting and design engineers in fields such as the following:
Examples of specific industries requiring the expertise of drafting and design engineers include the following:
- Computer Hardware
- Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration
- Information Technology
- Medical Equipment
Salaries and Outlook for Drafting and Design Engineering Careers
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), simple drafters earn a median salary of $47, 880 per year or a median hourly wage of $23.02 per hour. Most who earn this level of compensation will hold an Associates degree. However, because this compensation represents the more moderate pay scale of drafters in general, those who specialize in both drafting and design or who qualify as a drafting and design engineer can expect to earn more. When drafting and design professionals bring these two valuable skills into the engineering field, they can expect to command more lucrative compensation — possibly 50 percent more.
Mechanical and civil engineering are two areas in which a drafting and design engineer can specialize. The BLS lists mechanical engineering median salaries/wages at $71, 160 per year or $37.58 per hour and civil engineering median salaries/wages at $77, 560 per year or $37.29 per hour. While the BLS predicts that job growth in drafting technology will reach 6 percent between 2010 and 2020, it expects mechanical engineering growth to hit 9 percent and civil engineering growth to hit 19 percent during the same period.
Is Drafting and Design Engineering for You?
If you are technically oriented, mechanically inclined, good at mathematics and talented at translating intangible concepts into hands-on project plans, and you enjoy being involved in the practical application of complex theoretical principles, you may be well-suited to the drafting and design engineering field.