Ocean Engineering Career Outlook

You are just in time to pursue an ocean engineering career! Listen to Dr. Wood's perspective on the demand for ocean engineering.

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Prepare yourself for exciting Ocean Engineering Careers

Learn how to become a naval architect or marine engineer

Students who graduate with a degree in ocean engineering are likely to find ocean engineering jobs such as designing structures and vehicles for marine environments, from aircraft carriers and submarines to sailboats and tankers.

Ocean engineering jobs involve everything from preventing coastal erosion, designing jetties and seawalls to working as a naval architect. Success in this profession requires a strong background in engineering, combining it with in-depth experience in experimentation and hands-on design.

Career Outlook

Ocean engineering jobs are organized among five areas of concentration:

  • Coastal Engineering
  • Hydrographic Engineering
  • Marine Vehicles (Naval architecture)
  • Marine Materials and Corrosion
  • Underwater Technology

Information about ocean engineering jobs can be found in the Occupational Outlook Handbook, published by the United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The handbook provides information about specific jobs including median annual pay, working conditions and job outlook, among other things.

According to the Department of Labor, employment of ocean engineers and naval architects is expected to grow 17 percent through 2020. The need to design ships that can transport goods and energy across the globe will help spur employment growth for ocean engineering jobs.

Additionally, marine engineers are in demand for such occupations as maintaining offshore oil rigs, updating fleets to meet new federal requirements in transporting oil and gas, and designing cargo ships that better protect the environment through less pollution.

Check the handbook for ocean engineering jobs and other related careers.

Career Options

Ocean engineering careers can include the following:

  • Ocean Engineer
  • Marine Engineer
  • Naval Architect
  • Mechanical Engineer
  • Petroleum Engineer
  • Environmental Engineer

Although fairly specialized, ocean engineering offers an exciting, challenging and ultimately rewarding career path for graduates of Florida Tech.

Entry-Level Salary Expectations

Because ocean engineering jobs are very specialized, entry-level salary expectations are not reported by PayScale.com -- an online salary information company that helps people obtain accurate real-time information on job market compensation

However, the website does provide information on similar careers and can give you some insight on what you might expect in for a career in ocean engineering:

Mechanical Engineer: $60,100 – $91,900
Environmental Engineer: $47,900 – $89,700

Check PayScale.com for the most recent information on these and environmental science careers.

Potential Employers

Ocean engineering jobs are available with such organizations as:

  • Rockwell Aviation
  • Northrop Grumman
  • Boeing
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
  • National Science Foundation
  • Florida Department of Environmental Protection

Graduate Degree

Rather than starting employment immediately after graduation, 20 percent of Florida Tech Ocean Engineering grads go directly to graduate school, either at Florida Tech or at several other prestigious institutions including:

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • University of Alaska
  • University of Rhode Island
  • University of North Carolina
  • Cambridge University (UK)