Engineering: Making things happen

We have written a couple of well-received posts in the past about combating engineering’s image problem, engineering; a profession or a trade and also addressed why there are so few women in engineering – all subjects that are close to my heart.

I recently read a wonderfully simple explanation that to ‘engineer’ literally means to “make things happen” (source: Why Choose Engineering).  What a perfect, all-encompassing description!  One that would surely do more to attract bright young minds to the profession than much of the rather dry and uninspiring pro-STEM propaganda that we see.

I am a passionate and vocal advocate for engineering as a career, not least for the “cool stuff” that engineers (sometimes) get to do… like when engineers from Mattel and RS Components teamed up to send a Superman toy into space.

Imagine what an inspiring school project this would make as part of a technology course, and what a great way to touch upon some of the many diverse facets of engineering, such as:

– Project management, including planning, resourcing specifications and budgeting

– Design, taking into account climatic and environmental considerations, structures, physics, buoyancy, mass management, electronics hardware, software and materials technology.

– Manufacture, assembly and testing

– Execution – the fun bit

– Analysis and examination of performance data

My message for the traditional engineering establishment – sure, engineering is a serious discipline, one upon which millions of lives are entrusted every day.  However, it can be fun too, and I believe engineers should be given the freedom to have fun every once in a while, because fun inspires creativity, creativity inspires innovation… and innovation inspires people.


Warley Design offers mechanical design, engineering and product development services to a broad range of industries. If you’ve got a project we can help you with please contact us.


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