Aerospace engineer

Aerospace Engineer Jobs – Young Jobseeker Info

Did you know?

Do you ever look at aeroplanes or NASA rockets and wonder how they work? Could one-hour flights to America or package holidays to Mars become a real thing in YOUR lifetime? Aerospace engineers ask questions like these. They look to infinity and beyond!

Travel always needs to be faster, cheaper, safer, further. As an aerospace engineer it’s your job to design, repair and test aircraft and spacecraft that help us broaden our horizons. Working with commercial planes, missiles, space vehicles and satellites that do good work like studying the Earth’s climate change from space… there are so many ways to spread your wings. It’s a career choice that’s out of this world…

AMAZING AEROSPACE MAKES DREAMS COME TRUE: Billionaire space genius Elon Musk (who invented PayPal by the way) teased the world with a glimpse of his flying car prototype in November 2017. Imagine passing your driving test in one of those…

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Aerospace Engineer job trends

How much money can you make as an Aerospace Engineer?

£20,000 – £35,000 (UK average)

Recent labour market information says you can earn on average between £20,000 and £35,000 a year as an aerospace engineer in the UK.

Your starting salary can vary because of factors like level of experience, training, or location. Your salary as an Aerospace Engineer will increase over time as you build skills, knowledge and experience.

What entry qualifications and training do you need for this job?

To become an aerospace engineer, you’ll usually need to have 5 GCSEs (grades 9-4 or A*-C) and 3 A-levels including maths and a science related subject. One of the most direct routes is to go to university and study for an aeronautical engineering degree. Many UK universities offer aerospace engineering courses. Most aerospace engineers are usually professionally registered as either Incorporated or Chartered engineers, which is useful to know – it can help you get work all over the world.

Fun Fact: The UK aerospace industry employs over 250,000 people and has an annual turnover of more than £18 billion. That leaves room for you to get in on the action.

Taking the university route?

You can study for a foundation degree or degree in aerospace engineering, avionics or a related subject like:

  • Electrical/electronic engineering
  • Mechanical engineering
  • Manufacturing/product engineering
  • Physics or applied physics
  • Software engineering
  • Mathematics

Check out the Association of Aerospace Universities for more information about courses you can do.

Apprenticeships & training

Not going to uni? You still have alternative routes into this career. You can apply for a training scheme as an aerospace engineering technician.

You can approach companies like airline operators, airline manufacturers or engineering companies. You’ll usually start on their scheme, and working towards an engineering licence (known as a Part 66) which means you can work as a qualified engineer. You can then continue your training up to degree level.

HNC or HND courses in relevant subjects are also available.

Find out more with Careers in Aerospace.

Career progression

With time and experience you can be promoted in both the private and public sector. Skills that you’ve learnt while being an aerospace engineer can be extremely helpful in other areas of engineering, too. You can specialise in fields like:

  • Aerodynamics
  • Fuel efficiency
  • Space technology
  • Investigating air accidents.

Other experienced aerospace engineers go into senior management roles, or academia. There are also opportunities in consultancy.

What experience do you need for aerospace engineering jobs?

Work experience

Examples of relevant work experience include:

  • Work shadowing (even if it’s just for a day)
  • Work placements in a company
  • Year-long industry placements on a sandwich degree course

Click here for apprenticeship options.

Volunteering

If you want to get your first taste of aerospace engineering, your best bet is to volunteer in the field. There are lots of places where you can start picking up skills and understanding of the work, including:

  • Aircraft heritage museums
  • Airfields
  • Flying clubs

You’ll also pick up newfound respect for those brave men and women and their flying machines!

What skills do you need for aerospace engineering jobs?

What life and work skills do you need to be a great aerospace engineer?

Useful skills to highlight in your CV, cover letter and interview include:

  • Having the ability to interpret diagrams and drawings
  • IT skills
  • Great problem solving skills and being able to think logically through challenges
  • Good teamwork skills – you’ll often work on a small part of a huge project and everyone needs to share what they know!
  • Being able to handle high levels of responsibility
  • Strong knowledge of aircraft technology
  • An interest in engineering, construction and design
  • Have normal colour vision
  • Being a team player with good communication skills
  • Being very aware of health and safety (which you’ll pick up through training)

Vocational qualifications and work experience will help you build these skills over time.

Start building these skills right now – sign up for free Young Professional training.

What does an aerospace engineer do?

Aerospace engineers design, research and build all kinds of aircrafts made up of parts that have to make a perfect whole. Just as an example, you could be exploring the wings, hydraulics, the aircraft controls, elevators and flaps, the engine and the fuel storage.

As an aerospace engineer, you’ll consider new materials that could be used to keep things streamlined and reduce weight. Research is also a big part of the role – you’ll often try to innovate and develop materials that are used. From your research, you might come up with a smart new design for an aircraft then get to work on its construction. That’s how the future is built – one bright idea at a time.

Your first steps into aerospace engineering jobs

Aerospace engineer jobs are advertised under different job titles. To find jobs for young people in this role, search on job boards for opportunities with these words in the title:

    • Aerospace engineering technician apprenticeship
    • Aeronautical engineering apprenticeship
    • Aircraft engineering apprenticeship
    • Aircraft technician

Engineering/Manufacturing jobs you might like...

View job descriptions with average UK salary, useful qualifications and a variety of routes into this career. Or see our full list of careers in engineering and manufacturing!


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