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Old 06-23-2008, 01:17 AM #1
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Default Laser related jobs

Hey, I'm a Junior in high school, and its time for me to start looking for a college. But before I can even really choose a college, I need to think about what I want to do for a job...

so does anybody know of any laser related or electrical engineering jobs off the top of their head? I am also going to go look for possible jobs on the internet, too, so don't tell me I'm lazy and I should go look elsewhere. I'm just looking for ideas.

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Old 06-23-2008, 01:28 AM #2
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Why did you post this in the non-laser section? :-?

http://www.laserpointerforums.com/fo...oard=b_general
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Old 06-23-2008, 02:18 AM #3
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Because it is NOT related to lasers


oh, abray, you should consider electronic engineering. there you'll [s]be kicked in the ass by professors because you have to study impossible things[/s] learn A LOT about everything and how everything works. you'll have to build some stuff for projects so you'll get enough practice for your own DIY laser projects.


dont rely on internet jobs. seriously. study something that is rentable and that you like. i myself went for industrial engineering. 1st year and they're already given me enough to suicide
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Old 06-23-2008, 02:36 AM #4
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Quote:
Originally Posted by nikokapo
Because it is NOT related to lasers
You even read the title, lol? It says 'laser related jobs'


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Old 06-23-2008, 02:40 AM #5
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

nikokapo, are you being serious about that electrical engineering? Cause that is one thing I am interested in. And yes, haha, I've heard that any kind of engineering is suicide cause its REALLY hard. But I figure that if I like what I'm studying, it can't be TOO terribly horrible

and I think you guys misunderstood the "looking for jobs on the internet". I meant "looking on the internet" for jobs, not looking for "internet jobs". does that make sense?

And I guess I thought this really had to do more with jobs and college than with lasers, but if cold really wants to move it to the laser section, he could (doubt it). Or later I could post another thread there unless people find this one here.
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Old 06-23-2008, 03:21 AM #6
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Engineering FTW!
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Old 06-23-2008, 03:53 AM #7
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

When I worked at that laser machine shop there were three "classes" of workers there - the laser operators (which is similar to a CNC mill operator) and the laser "mechanics" - guys who did most of the adjustments and repairs to the lasers themselves. (I did neither - the third class of workers were those who did odd jobs or inspected welded parts like I did)

Anyway, it depends on what sort of work you want to do with lasers. The CNC operators basically oversaw the more or less automatic production (cutting, welding, heat treating) of parts. They could do stuff like clean mirrors and make minor adjustments to the lasers, but that's about it. Those jobs didn't pay a whole lot - 10 years ago they made roughly $10 per hour (would be a bit more now).

The "mechanics" - and these guys must have had some background in electronics - they got to take the lasers apart and repair them. I think another term for this occupation is "electro-optical engineer" but I could be wrong.... I'm sure they made more than ten bucks an hour!

As far as getting/looking for a job once you have the education, if you want to tend towards the latter, you might look into working for some industrial laser manufacturer. There was a guy who sometimes came down from the manufacturer's plant to offer on-site technical support. They hated to call this guy in because it was something like 50 bucks an hour for him to be there on site...

Of course that's only the industrial side of lasers...
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Old 06-23-2008, 05:20 AM #8
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

If you really want to get your ass kicked in a field that can lead to lasers you could go into physics and specialize in optics. I have a year left for my bachelors in physics and will be getting a master's maybe a phd in optical science and I'll be specializing in lasers. My physics background and some luck got me a job working with high power lasers which I will probably take up as a full time position for a year or so before grad school. Optical engineering could probably get you into the laser world as well. If you want lasers specifically, find out which professors and groups work with them and see if you can get something going that way.
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Old 06-23-2008, 05:39 AM #9
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Like climbak said, physics physics physics. Preferably a graduate degree. You'll meet many people along the way that can help you get into the field that you want to be in.
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Old 06-24-2008, 09:47 PM #10
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Physics is one way. But i am serious about electronic engineering.

and it IS suicide, and it WILL BE horrible, but you'll learn so much stuff you will become GOD, as climbak.
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Old 06-25-2008, 01:25 AM #11
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Man am I lucky to be only one city away from my college which offers a course in....... wait for it...... photonics engineering. Yeah. Nobody that I have ever spoken to has even the slightest clue what that is. But it boils down to essentially the following in order of importance: laser engineering, optical engineering, thin film engineering, electronics and a bit of fiber optics thrown in for good measure. I am so happy and the job placement rate is insane. One year down, two to go! 8-)
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Old 06-25-2008, 01:38 AM #12
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Quote:
Originally Posted by nikokapo
i myself went for industrial engineering. 1st year and they're already given me enough to suicide
All my college friends were engineers (of various sorts), one being an IE (industrial engineer). Everyone would always call IE "imaginary engineering", since he typically was more involved with the theory of things rather than actually building something. But, he was a super-smart guy, full-ride for undergraduate AND graduate studies at a good school (University of Pittsburgh). I'd probably have gone into engineering if it wasn't for all of the math, which I'm terrible with ;D Instead, I've settled for medicine

I'd certainly agree that, for your interests, engineering would be the way to go. Probably almost any area would do, just so you find a researcher doing something in your area of interest and get to know him/her well You can almost always take advanced courses in whatever field of interest you have, as long as you have pre-requitsites completed.
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Old 06-25-2008, 02:38 AM #13
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Quote:
Originally Posted by Event Horizon
Man am I lucky to be only one city away from my college which offers a course in....... wait for it...... photonics engineering. Yeah. Nobody that I have ever spoken to has even the slightest clue what that is. But it boils down to essentially the following in order of importance: laser engineering, optical engineering, thin film engineering, electronics and a bit of fiber optics thrown in for good measure. I am so happy and the job placement rate is insane. One year down, two to go! *8-)
THAT IS SO COOL, i wish i had that kind of engineering here in argentina!!

NEVER, EVER heard of it....damn dude you're so lucky. please go for it, for me




Quote:
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[quote author=nikokapo link=1214183847/0#2 date=1214187501] i myself went for industrial engineering. 1st year and they're already given me enough to suicide
All my college friends were engineers (of various sorts), one being an IE (industrial engineer). Everyone would always call IE "imaginary engineering", since he typically was more involved with the theory of things rather than actually building something. But, he was a super-smart guy, full-ride for undergraduate AND graduate studies at a good school (University of Pittsburgh). I'd probably have gone into engineering if it wasn't for all of the math, which I'm terrible with ;D Instead, I've settled for medicine

I'd certainly agree that, for your interests, engineering would be the way to go. Probably almost any area would do, just so you find a researcher doing something in your area of interest and get to know him/her well You can almost always take advanced courses in whatever field of interest you have, as long as you have pre-requitsites completed.[/quote]


yeah, it is sometimes referred as "the least of the enigneering-s" because some focus more on economical & administrative stuff, but i was told that i would learn a bit about everything, and that's what i wanted. to know at least something about everything. what i am interested in i will and am developing/asking/learning by myself, like i do here


i am also not very FAST with math, so i also went into engineering because it was a challenge for me, i'd have gone to abogacy (law school) or design or something else but i'd kick ass in those fields :P, and i learn that by myself, so i wanted something DIFFICULT [s]to give me 5 or 6 years of pain[/s] so i can feel good when i finish it =)
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Old 06-25-2008, 03:39 AM #14
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

I think Sam Goldwasser, yes the Sam of Sam's FAQ is an EE. Can someone confirm that?

EE, and physics can fast track you to lasers. Double E's not only design the power systems but can end up doing resonator work. Many of them find themselves as Sales Engineers for industrial and medical laser systems. Sales Engineering is a very lucrative job as you are often paired with a salesman. You are the one who goes with the salesman to a customer location and determines what they need based on their specifications. The salesman then makes the sale and you engineer the customer's solution and oversee the installation at each site. Plus many of the SE's as they are called not only get a salary but also a part of the commission for the sale. I did that for many years. Lots of travel, all kinds of problems to solve, and of course the paid lunches for the potential clients were always tasty.

Physics tends to get you in the university end of things but you can still do field work with a physics degree. If you get the Ph.D. dont expect field work. You'll be in the lab most of the time.
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Old 06-25-2008, 05:13 AM #15
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

I think most of the answers above are correct. I have a BS in physics and a MS in EE and Im working on a PhD. In general the people who work in depth with lasers are physics and EE people. In my experience those who are working on building lasers and related optical stuff tend to be EE and those who are using lasers for stuff tend to be physics. That is certainly not a blanket statement but just who the majority of people working on things tend to be in my experience. With my background I have many job possibilities that could be from basic research to industry/military etc. If you are interested in a laser job where you are building/designing laser related things check out EE. If you are interested in using lasers for things no one has ever done before (and usually building the lasers that you use) check out physics. If it is somewhere in between do physics because it sounds more badass than EE. Also physics undergrad lets you get into any engineering grad program, not necessarily the other way around. For grad school (although you are a far cry from needing to worry about that) a physics PhD in necessary if you ever want to be a physics professor. If not get an engineering PhD because it is easier to get jobs and they seem to pay more than if you have a physics PhD (also, you can get the same jobs).


And as far as the suicide talk goes it is total crap. Every class in challenging or you wouldnt need to take it. Some are hard, not just challenging. But you always will have taken the class before the class you are taking now before you take it so it isnt like it gets harder, it is always just challenging. If you are interested in doing it eventually you just know how and it is really easy. Dont let talk of things being hard influence you too much. If I can do it, anyone can (I sucked at math when I started).
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Default Re: Laser related jobs

Thanks for the answers everybody!

and since I enjoy math and physics right now, I think it will be fairly easy for me to deal with any "hard" classes and all. I'm also willing to put forth effort to make sure I like my job when I'm older (meaning it will be in one of those tough fields). Now I just need to start looking for colleges that offer some EE and physics programs.

Also, Event Horizon, what school do you go to?
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