Myth #6: Engineers don’t care about people

13 August

Last post I talked about how engineering is collaborative.

This week I take things even further and debunk the myth that:

Myth #6:  Engineers don’t care about people.

If you remember, last time I quoted one of my undergraduate students as saying:

“Why do we have to do lab in groups?  I don’t like people, that’s why I became an engineer.”


In my experience, not only do engineers work in groups, they actually CARE about people.

No really, it’s true.

I see this all the time with my family.  I’m a fourth generation mechanical engineer, and both my father and brother are engineers (poor mom the German/English teacher is frequently left out).

It is very common that we sit around the dinner table discussing a problem with the world.  We’ll immediately brainstorm solutions, ways to engineer the world so that human suffering is lessened.

The only difference between how we respond to human suffering and a doctor is this:

Engineers focus on changing the inanimate world to fit the people, whereas doctors focus on fixing the people.

This is true of in engineering in general, not only my weirdo family.

Often the inspiration for a product is because someone is struggling.  The terminology for this is the “customer pain point”.

We engineers don’t want to see customer suffer, so we come up with solutions, different machines that could help them out.  Understanding the customer’s suffering, empathy, is key to finding these solutions.

I have an engineering friend that, in his spare time, is helping adapt a computer so people with dexterity issues can write software code.  He isn’t motivated by greed (making money off it) he simply wants to help.  He cares.

Engineering is a caring profession.

Sorry guys, the secret is out.  HUGS FOR ALL!!!


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