7 Misconceptions People Have About Engineers

I’ve heard it a thousand times. “Oh wow, you’re an engineer? That must mean you’re smart!” It’s an annoying misconception, yet one that tends to grow on you due to the fact that, yes, being an engineer comes with the prestige, the title, and the stigma of being one. As such, I bring you the top 6 misconceptions of an engineer (from my own personal point of view of course). Note: this isn’t in any particular order.

1. All engineers knew what they wanted to do from the start

That, I can say loud and proud, is a lie. I didn’t know I wanted to become an engineer. In fact, my first choice was honestly to become a doctor. But I thought that 8+ years in medicine would get extremely boring, so throughout high school, I wanted to go to into law. As such, most of my credits went to that instead of math. It wasn’t until my senior year that I decided that law school would be too tedious and boring. Not to mention that as an engineer, you get to change how people view things by making things better (most of the time).

2. All engineers are smart (usually in math)

At this point I ask myself, “What is considered smart?” Is it the way one speaks? The way one acts? The way one learns? Smart, according to Google is, “Having or showing a quick-witted intelligence.” Okay, I understand that. I like to think of myself as witty, but intelligent? No way. Especially when it comes to math. Math has always been the bane of my existence. I know people who are masters in their fields of study and can tell me everything there is to know about it. When I’m asked to explain what X is in a problem, I can’t even tell when we included the X. It’s not that math is intrinsically hard, but it’s that it never seems to makes sense. If anything, I’m just happy being considered somewhat smart because I passed calculus and understand basic math.

3. Engineers are nerds and geeks

While the majority does represent us as that (myself included), there’s more than meets the eye. Yes, I’ve witnessed people playing Dungeons And Dragons in their spare time and even seen some friends go cosplay at conventions. Yet, it’s these people that also go to rock shows and go out dancing and drinking. I see myself and I’m the one that’s typing and doing homework. I am not that exception! Unless there’s a good concert in town in which case, peace!

4. There are no girl engineers

Okay, this seems to be one of the bigger ones on the list. I can say that this is a lie. There are women engineers and I’m willing to bet that some of them are way smarter than I am. It seems like guys outnumber girls 10:1 and seeing a girl engineer is like spotting a unicorn! Even more so If she’s in your class! Regardless, they exist and are a thing. Now if only they were easier to find…

5. Dating an engineer is a terrible idea

I never understood this stigma very much. I mean, most of the time we’re going to be busy doing homework sets for hours on end, but if you land an engineer, especially a male one, you’re set for life! Think about it. We’re somewhat smart and will have a stable job with a stable income by the time we’re 25! Not to mention there is little to no chance for cheating. Seriously! We have little to no time to go out, so less chance of cheating. Instead, we will give you any spare time we have and most likely do whatever you tell us just to keep you happy. The only downfall I can actually see is we will talk mostly about what we’re doing at the time (which is mostly math or how something works) and you will probably just nod and smile, but we’re okay with that!

6. Engineers have a dry sense of humor

We are some of the most sarcastic people you will ever meet. Plus, we have the advantage of having nerd humor. We can be the life of a party! We just choose to not go to them or we just don’t have the time!

7. The majority of engineers are socially awkward

While I believe this to be somewhat of a coin flip, I still count it as a misconception. The reason being, while we may not talk to people outside of our regular groups, it doesn’t mean we’re socially awkward. If anything, it’s a trust thing. It takes time for us to actually open up and be fun around you. It’s not because we don’t like people — most of us are just afraid and at times too overbearing or over-confident in our abilities. Keep in mind some of the things we work with often gives us a feeling of euphoria and when we try to tell people, it usually goes over their heads. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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