Online Engineering Degree Programs in Arizona
Engineering is not only one of the top-paying career fields in Arizona, but also one of the fastest growing. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS May 2016) reported that engineering and architecture professionals make up nearly 1.8 percent of the state workforce, occupying a total of 47,570 positions.
There’s evidence that the number of engineers across many subfields will continue to grow in the future, both nationwide and in Arizona. By illustration, the BLS (October 2016) predicted that the following specializations would be among the top-growing in the nation between 2014 and 2024: civil engineering (305,000 new positions added nationally, 2014-24); mechanical (292,100 new positions), industrial (243,200 new positions), and electrical (180,200 new positions). In percentage terms, the nation’s top-growing engineering subfields included biomedical (23.1 percent increase in positions, 2014-24), environmental (12.4 percent), and civil (8.4 percent). And within AZ, these projected percentages were even more robust. In fact, Projections Central (2017) found that the following specializations were expected to explode in Arizona during that same decade: biomedical engineers (40.2 percent increase in AZ positions, 2014-24), civil (29.4 percent), environmental (25 percent), mechanical (16.3 percent), and chemical (14.1 percent). And all of these national and state-based figures were significantly higher than the average expected growth across all occupations during those ten years (6.5 years). In short, opportunities for engineers look bright into the future.
Engineers in AZ also enjoy other benefits, including the support from local engineering organizations and societies and a relatively high salary compared to the rest of the workforce. In terms of support, engineering professionals in Arizona can join any of the following societies to network, find job opportunities, pursue additional education, and even obtain legal advocacy:
In terms of compensation, engineers earn on average significantly more than many other occupations. Here are some of the top-paying engineering specializations in AZ (BLS May 2016):
- Chemical engineers – $113,650 (average annual salary)
- Electrical engineers – $104,680
- Computer hardware engineers – $103,260
- Aerospace engineers – $99,590
- Electronics engineers – $98,410
In sum, Arizona’s expected job growth, array of professional associations, and relatively high salaries in engineering make this an especially attractive career field. Prior to becoming an engineer, however, it’s necessary to attain the appropriate education and training. While some prospective engineers seek out traditional, on-campus degree programs, others choose online engineering programs at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or certificate level. These may allow students and working professionals a greater degree of flexibility while completing their studies.
This article explores the wealth of online engineering schools in AZ, as well as some outstanding professors, expected coursework, and accreditation information.