Friday, 23 December 2011

The Journal of An Engineer So, you have graduated from the prestigious (or not so prestigious, depending on your view) University of (insert here) with a Bachelor's Degree in (insert here) Engineering. Maybe you graduated with magna cum laude (or First Class Honors as the locals called it) and you expected a bright future ahead of you. You wanted to invent like Thomas Edison, or to build skyscrapers like the Petronas Twin Towers, or even to be worshiped like Steve Jobs even though he was not an engineer. The prospect seemed endless.

You are very sure that scores of companies will headhunt you and you have prepared your answers, but alas it is your coursemates who could not even spell the word 'engineer' who got a job first instead. Oh well, must be the financial crisis screwing things up, you thought, and so you began to look for jobs through classifieds and career fairs while being a little bitter that your coursemates got ahead of you.

Finally, after going through tough interviews and anxious moments, you get the offer from (insert here) Sdn Bhd., one of the multinational companies designing (insert a product here). Congratulations! Time for a well-deserved celebration! Gossips and news from friends telling you that your classmates who almost flunked their degree are being sent for business trips overseas diminished your celebratory mood a little, but you assure yourself that all is well. This is nothing but a streak of luck of theirs, and you certainly will outshine them all by showing your potential.

And so, you prepare for your first day at your job, dreaming of being Steve Jobs one day, or on your path to benefit the society through ingenious inventions, with your name on its patent. You even think of what Mr Jobs or Mr Edison would have done on his first working day, only to realize that they did not went to work in an office.

2 months into the job, you notice something amiss: your manager is not asking you to do anything that remotely resemble engineering job. He could not even understand the theories which you explain to support your view on why the problem arises in the first place. All he wants is for you to do exactly as he asked, no questions asked. The first thing that comes to mind is: how am I going to be an engineer if this is the way I worked? Although you are sincerely worried about your future, you continue to toil away in silence.

This opening piece for my blog is inspired by another article from Free Malaysia Today. Click here for the article.

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