I have an engineering degree, and I can tell that almost all
engineers, myself included, are just running on conditioned responses,
and cannot think.
My father had an EE degree and got dozens of patents doing ME. He said
having no education was a big advantage. He did use the math.
Still, for complicated 3 dimensional hydraulic inventions, he had a
non degree guy that was backing him up.
The best engineers I have seen are the ones that get lots of patents,
but never spent a day in college.
I work with them whenever I can, doing the math for them.
They can actually think.
They always surprise me.
An engineering degree means that a guy can do hellish technical paper
work [I am available].
To find someone who can really think, they need to rise up through the
ranks from the hobby world.
Maybe I have a different perspective as I worked with a lot of great
engineers and got my EE degree in Electro-mechanical design while working my
way through college as a mainframe Field Engineer. And grew up in one of
the better machine shops in the San Francisco Bay area. Major problem with
engineers and we could learn from the trades. Assign a new engineer from
university to work with an experience engineer. Most have not worked on
cars or other mechanical devices, especially the EE's. Mechanical
experience seems to lend itself to better engineering as you reason out how
something is going to function. My expertise was in controlling mechanical
devices. Disk Drives and some biomed stuff. I had some brilliant graduate
school engineers work for me over the years. Most could not find an error
in the design after it was built. No troubleshooting skills. And that is
where we lose a lot. Neighbor worked on the Apollo program. He said they
broke a lot of rules to keep on schedule. Pull a board and fix it with a
soldering iron, etc. But most of those engineers had a practical
background. As to our education system, SUCKS. We have dumbed it down big
time. To keep the marginal student in school. I have a high IQ, and was a
bored high school student in the late 1950's. It has to be even worse now
for the smart kid. Bad enough for me, who loved mechanical stuff and they
tried to get the smart kids in to the programs that lead you to a job with
the State Department, or other Liberal Arts type job. There was not gifted
program. And then we killed all the shop classes. At least in California.
The Community and State Colleges campaigned to teach any trades after high
school. Wow, that has really added to the graduation rate of high school.
And we are not teaching much math.