Aerospace Engineer Career

Jose Maldonado

What aerospace engineers do

Aerospace engineers design aircraft, spacecraft, satellites, and missiles. In addition, they test prototypes to make sure that they function according to design.

What they are responsible for

  • Direct and coordinate the design, manufacture, and testing of aircraft and aerospace products
  • Determine if proposed projects will result in safe aircraft and parts
  • Evaluate designs to see that the products meet engineering principles, customer requirements, and environmental challenges
  • Ensure that projects meet quality standards
  • Inspect malfunctioning or damaged products to identify sources of problems and possible solutions

Requirements for an aerospace engineer

Aerospace engineers must have a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering or some other field of engineering or science related to aerospace systems. However, on occasion, some employers hire college graduates with mathematics or natural science degree. A masters degree is usually required for faculty positions and research and development programs.

Pay Rate

The median annual salaries for aerospace engineers are $94,780. The highest 10 percent earned above $137,730, the lowest 10 percent earned under $59,500. Aerospace engineers earn average stating salaries of $56,311, which is one of the highest starting salaries among those holding bachelor’s degrees.


"Summary." U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 29 Mar. 2012. Web. 04 Jan. 2014.

"Aerospace Engineers." Career Information:. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Jan. 2014