Tags:

MECHANICAL ENGINEER - ENERGY: Professional Problem Solver

About this video 

Michaeline, a mechanical engineer specializing in energy, thinks of herself as a professional problem solver - she creates products that help solve energy access issues. Here, she gives some advice for people who hate math - look at it from a practical perspective. Math is just another tool you can use.

Degree: Environmental Science - Mechanical Engineering
Job Title: Mechnical Engineer - Energy Speciality

Job Summary: Mechanical Engineers

Job Description

Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

On-the-Job Training

None

Quick Facts

Average salary
Average salary
National Statistic Change Location
Confirm
$50,000 - $120,000
Projected job growth
Projected Job Growth
0 to 10 percent
Typical schedule
Typical schedule
Full-time
Typical workplace
Typical workplace
Indoor, Office
Personal qualities
Personal Qualities
Creativity, Mathematical skills, Problem solving skills, Detail oriented, Technical skills, Verbal communication skills, Written communication skills
P3.instances[0].transcript.parse_transcript_data({"transcript":"<p><span m='430'>Hi,</span> <span m='730'>I'm</span> <span m='1370'>Michaeline</span> <span m='1800'>Sheehy.</span> <span m='2440'>And</span> <span m='2730'>I'm</span> <span m='2880'>from</span> <span m='3100'>St. Paul,</span> <span m='3370'>Minnesota.</span> <span m='4860'>And</span> <span m='5140'>I'm</span> <span m='5460'>a</span> <span m='5550'>mechanical</span> <span m='6290'>engineer.</span> </p><p><span m='7490'>I</span> <span m='7760'>always</span> <span m='8050'>introduce</span> <span m='8510'>myself</span> <span m='9320'>as</span> <span m='9470'>a</span> <span m='9530'>professional</span> <span m='10560'>problem</span> <span m='11050'>solver,</span> <span m='12210'>and</span> <span m='12500'>people</span> <span m='12880'>understand</span> <span m='13450'>what</span> <span m='13590'>that</span> <span m='13850'>is.</span> <span m='14240'>Sometimes</span> <span m='14800'>when I</span> <span m='14910'>say</span> <span m='15450'>mechanical</span> <span m='16140'>engineer,</span> <span m='17210'>nobody's</span> <span m='17620'>heard</span> <span m='17850'>of</span> <span m='17930'>that,</span> <span m='18300'>and</span> <span m='18460'>they</span> <span m='18600'>think</span> <span m='18930'>of</span> <span m='19290'>a</span> <span m='19410'>car</span> <span m='19760'>mechanic.</span> <span m='20300'>But</span> <span m='20420'>that's</span> <span m='20690'>not</span> <span m='21160'>what</span> <span m='21340'>I</span> <span m='21540'>do.</span> <span m='22130'>What</span> <span m='22590'>I</span> <span m='22840'>do</span> <span m='23790'>is</span> <span m='23990'>very,</span> <span m='24740'>very</span> <span m='25060'>different.</span> <span m='26510'>So,</span> <span m='27360'>mechanical</span> <span m='28040'>engineer</span> <span m='28730'>is</span> <span m='29300'>one</span> <span m='30310'>discipline</span> <span m='30830'>of</span> <span m='31010'>engineering.</span> </p><p><span m='31790'>There's</span> <span m='32020'>actually</span> <span m='32409'>chemical</span> <span m='32950'>engineers,</span> <span m='33650'>industrial</span> <span m='34280'>engineers,</span> <span m='35410'>electrical</span> <span m='36050'>engineers,</span> <span m='36910'>and</span> <span m='37150'>others.</span> <span m='38570'>Whatever</span> <span m='39080'>you</span> <span m='39450'>use,</span> <span m='40200'>whatever</span> <span m='40670'>is</span> <span m='40820'>made</span> <span m='41865'>is</span> <span m='42120'>touched</span> <span m='42530'>by</span> <span m='42660'>an</span> <span m='42770'>engineer.</span> <span m='43670'>So</span> <span m='44540'>your</span> <span m='44750'>makeup,</span> <span m='45700'>your</span> <span m='45940'>clothing,</span> <span m='47110'>your</span> <span m='47390'>glasses,</span> <span m='48740'>your</span> <span m='49410'>food,</span> <span m='50550'>anything</span> <span m='51060'>that</span> <span m='51220'>you</span> <span m='51350'>use</span> <span m='51830'>that</span> <span m='51980'>is</span> <span m='52190'>created</span> <span m='53380'>is</span> <span m='53560'>made</span> <span m='53830'>by</span> <span m='53980'>an</span> <span m='54090'>engineer.</span> <span m='54660'>So</span> <span m='54940'>I</span> <span m='55140'>look</span> <span m='55320'>at</span> <span m='55420'>myself</span> <span m='56120'>first</span> <span m='56410'>and</span> <span m='56540'>foremost</span> <span m='56990'>as</span> <span m='57370'>creative</span> <span m='58430'>and</span> <span m='58580'>artistic,</span> <span m='59466'>but</span> <span m='59910'>I</span> <span m='60120'>also</span> <span m='60640'>have</span> <span m='60880'>to</span> <span m='61010'>make</span> <span m='61250'>those</span> <span m='61520'>practical.</span> </p><p><span m='62930'>And</span> <span m='63130'>so</span> <span m='63250'>that's</span> <span m='63640'>what</span> <span m='63800'>really</span> <span m='64099'>changes</span> <span m='64870'>my</span> <span m='65150'>role</span> <span m='65760'>from</span> <span m='66050'>just</span> <span m='66320'>a</span> <span m='66380'>pure</span> <span m='66780'>artistic</span> <span m='67330'>role</span> <span m='67610'>for</span> <span m='67800'>art's</span> <span m='68100'>sake.</span> <span m='69400'>And</span> <span m='69620'>I</span> <span m='69730'>went</span> <span m='69920'>into</span> <span m='70220'>engineering</span> <span m='70970'>because</span> <span m='72260'>I</span> <span m='72470'>was</span> <span m='72670'>very</span> <span m='73080'>interested</span> <span m='74100'>in</span> <span m='74750'>energy</span> <span m='75410'>and</span> <span m='75600'>the</span> <span m='75710'>environment,</span> <span m='76390'>because</span> <span m='76900'>the</span> <span m='76980'>more</span> <span m='77340'>access</span> <span m='78100'>to</span> <span m='78590'>energy</span> <span m='79050'>people</span> <span m='79350'>have,</span> <span m='79890'>the</span> <span m='80120'>higher</span> <span m='80650'>their</span> <span m='80940'>quality</span> <span m='81540'>of</span> <span m='81660'>living</span> <span m='81990'>is,</span> <span m='82530'>and</span> <span m='82700'>I</span> <span m='82780'>wanted</span> <span m='83070'>to</span> <span m='83190'>make</span> <span m='83430'>energy</span> <span m='83960'>more</span> <span m='84170'>accessible</span> <span m='85130'>to</span> <span m='85270'>more</span> <span m='85510'>people.</span> </p><p><span m='86520'>And</span> <span m='86640'>so</span> <span m='87030'>I'm an</span> <span m='87160'>energy</span> <span m='87750'>engineer,</span> <span m='89200'>but</span> <span m='89460'>other</span> <span m='89900'>mechanical</span> <span m='90400'>engineers</span> <span m='91110'>work</span> <span m='91490'>on</span> <span m='91740'>computers,</span> <span m='92520'>and</span> <span m='92830'>how</span> <span m='93160'>to</span> <span m='93800'>make</span> <span m='94020'>sure</span> <span m='94170'>they</span> <span m='94320'>don't</span> <span m='94560'>overheat.</span> <span m='95510'>So</span> <span m='95850'>we're</span> <span m='96170'>the</span> <span m='96300'>most</span> <span m='96840'>broad</span> <span m='97850'>discipline</span> <span m='98620'>of</span> <span m='98770'>engineers.</span> <span m='99770'>That's</span> <span m='100120'>some</span> <span m='100270'>of</span> <span m='100330'>the</span> <span m='100430'>things</span> <span m='100680'>that</span> <span m='100810'>I</span> <span m='100880'>get</span> <span m='101070'>to</span> <span m='101170'>do</span> <span m='101340'>with</span> <span m='101580'>my</span> <span m='101760'>career.</span> <span m='102846'>When I</span> <span m='103302'>was</span> <span m='103760'>in</span> <span m='104040'>high school,</span> <span m='104680'>I</span> <span m='104820'>loved</span> <span m='105180'>school,</span> <span m='105630'>but</span> <span m='106080'>I</span> <span m='106320'>hated</span> <span m='107090'>math.</span> <span m='107860'>To</span> <span m='108090'>me,</span> <span m='108340'>math</span> <span m='108840'>was</span> <span m='109010'>another</span> <span m='109360'>four-letter</span> <span m='109870'>word.</span> <span m='110620'>I</span> <span m='110840'>hated</span> <span m='111340'>taking</span> <span m='111780'>math</span> <span m='112200'>tests.</span> </p><p><span m='112930'>But</span> <span m='113120'>once</span> <span m='113350'>I</span> <span m='113440'>learned</span> <span m='114020'>that</span> <span m='114250'>math</span> <span m='114800'>is</span> <span m='115000'>a</span> <span m='115070'>language,</span> <span m='115920'>just</span> <span m='116050'>like</span> <span m='116280'>any</span> <span m='116550'>other</span> <span m='116830'>foreign</span> <span m='117230'>language,</span> <span m='118150'>except</span> <span m='118420'>it</span> <span m='118630'>also</span> <span m='118910'>uses</span> <span m='119380'>numbers,</span> <span m='119990'>which</span> <span m='120180'>are</span> <span m='120440'>just</span> <span m='120660'>another</span> <span m='120990'>form</span> <span m='121260'>of</span> <span m='121330'>a</span> <span m='121420'>symbol,</span> <span m='121920'>just</span> <span m='122170'>like</span> <span m='122310'>the</span> <span m='122400'>letter,</span> <span m='123200'>so</span> <span m='123470'>when</span> <span m='123600'>I</span> <span m='123690'>looked</span> <span m='123970'>at</span> <span m='124080'>it</span> <span m='124250'>as</span> <span m='124390'>a</span> <span m='124450'>language</span> <span m='124970'>and</span> <span m='125140'>a</span> <span m='125200'>puzzle,</span> <span m='126150'>it</span> <span m='126420'>all</span> <span m='126620'>of</span> <span m='126720'>a</span> <span m='126820'>sudden</span> <span m='127040'>clicked,</span> <span m='127590'>and</span> <span m='127760'>I</span> <span m='127890'>really,</span> <span m='128530'>really</span> <span m='128750'>became</span> <span m='129560'>interested</span> <span m='130470'>in</span> <span m='130650'>it.</span> <span m='130935'>But</span> <span m='131220'>only</span> <span m='131580'>from</span> <span m='131750'>a</span> <span m='131840'>practice</span> <span m='132470'>perspective.</span> <span m='132885'>So</span> <span m='133300'>all</span> <span m='133560'>the</span> <span m='133640'>math</span> <span m='133900'>that</span> <span m='134050'>you</span> <span m='134150'>might</span> <span m='134360'>do</span> <span m='134470'>in</span> <span m='134610'>school,</span> <span m='135420'>it</span> <span m='135560'>actually</span> <span m='135960'>represents</span> <span m='136910'>something</span> <span m='137390'>physical.</span> </p><p><span m='138450'>So</span> <span m='139120'>you</span> <span m='139340'>have</span> <span m='139830'>an</span> <span m='140040'>area</span> <span m='140960'>is</span> <span m='141160'>one</span> <span m='141530'>side</span> <span m='141870'>times</span> <span m='142160'>another</span> <span m='142490'>side.</span> <span m='143150'>So</span> <span m='143340'>when</span> <span m='143490'>you</span> <span m='143600'>see</span> <span m='143810'>a</span> <span m='143850'>big</span> <span m='144090'>math</span> <span m='144360'>equation,</span> <span m='144970'>don't</span> <span m='145240'>be</span> <span m='145390'>freaked</span> <span m='145670'>out</span> <span m='145810'>about</span> <span m='146080'>it.</span> <span m='146280'>It's</span> <span m='146520'>just</span> <span m='146630'>something</span> <span m='147010'>physical,</span> <span m='147620'>like</span> <span m='147810'>a</span> <span m='147890'>sphere</span> <span m='148235'>or</span> <span m='148580'>a</span> <span m='148640'>triangle.</span> <span m='150310'>So</span> <span m='150970'>I</span> <span m='151220'>was</span> <span m='151460'>not</span> <span m='151700'>one</span> <span m='151830'>of</span> <span m='151910'>those</span> <span m='152150'>people</span> <span m='152520'>that</span> <span m='152840'>really</span> <span m='154080'>did</span> <span m='154600'>all</span> <span m='155200'>100%</span> <span m='156210'>on</span> <span m='156320'>every</span> <span m='156500'>math</span> <span m='156840'>class,</span> <span m='157560'>and</span> <span m='157780'>so</span> <span m='157990'>I</span> <span m='158150'>didn't</span> <span m='158450'>know</span> <span m='158620'>what</span> <span m='158830'>engineers</span> <span m='159370'>did.</span> <span m='159720'>I</span> <span m='159820'>didn't</span> <span m='160010'>have</span> <span m='160170'>any</span> <span m='160370'>engineering</span> <span m='160840'>specific</span> <span m='161290'>classes,</span> <span m='162140'>but</span> <span m='162350'>I</span> <span m='162570'>knew</span> <span m='162980'>again</span> <span m='163320'>that</span> <span m='163450'>I</span> <span m='163520'>wanted</span> <span m='163890'>to</span> <span m='164040'>go</span> <span m='164480'>and</span> <span m='165020'>do</span> <span m='165160'>something</span> <span m='165600'>that</span> <span m='165770'>was</span> <span m='165900'>related</span> <span m='166140'>to</span> <span m='166360'>the</span> <span m='166460'>environment.</span> </p><p><span m='167050'>I</span> <span m='167190'>studied</span> <span m='167580'>environmental</span> <span m='168130'>science</span> <span m='169030'>and</span> <span m='169230'>studies,</span> <span m='169940'>and</span> <span m='170110'>I</span> <span m='170190'>took</span> <span m='170420'>some</span> <span m='170570'>policy</span> <span m='171100'>courses.</span> <span m='171690'>I</span> <span m='171830'>learned</span> <span m='172060'>the</span> <span m='172140'>history,</span> <span m='172670'>which</span> <span m='172860'>is</span> <span m='172970'>really</span> <span m='173250'>important</span> <span m='173710'>of</span> <span m='173770'>the</span> <span m='173930'>environmental</span> <span m='174600'>movement.</span> <span m='175400'>But</span> <span m='175770'>ultimately,</span> <span m='176440'>if</span> <span m='176630'>I</span> <span m='176880'>could</span> <span m='177670'>design</span> <span m='178130'>the</span> <span m='178210'>car</span> <span m='178580'>that</span> <span m='178740'>went</span> <span m='178900'>100</span> <span m='179180'>miles</span> <span m='179490'>per</span> <span m='179600'>gallon</span> <span m='180180'>and was</span> <span m='180470'>cost</span> <span m='180790'>effective,</span> <span m='181580'>then</span> <span m='181800'>I</span> <span m='181860'>wouldn't</span> <span m='182100'>have</span> <span m='182320'>to</span> <span m='182440'>debate,</span> <span m='183100'>and</span> <span m='183220'>I</span> <span m='183270'>wouldn't</span> <span m='183450'>have</span> <span m='183640'>to</span> <span m='183780'>write</span> <span m='183980'>about</span> <span m='184280'>things,</span> <span m='184530'>which</span> <span m='184650'>are</span> <span m='184750'>really</span> <span m='185010'>important</span> <span m='185490'>tools,</span> <span m='186090'>but</span> <span m='186600'>not</span> <span m='186790'>necessarily</span> <span m='187310'>where</span> <span m='187460'>my</span> <span m='187580'>passion</span> <span m='188090'>lied.</span> </p><p><span m='188770'>And</span> <span m='189010'>so</span> <span m='189160'>I</span> <span m='189260'>had</span> <span m='189450'>an</span> <span m='189560'>opportune</span> <span m='190070'>conversation</span> <span m='190820'>with</span> <span m='190990'>somebody</span> <span m='191400'>that</span> <span m='191590'>happened</span> <span m='191980'>to</span> <span m='192040'>be</span> <span m='192200'>an</span> <span m='192300'>engineer</span> <span m='192870'>that</span> <span m='193020'>said,</span> <span m='193795'>hey,</span> <span m='194120'>what</span> <span m='194550'>you're</span> <span m='194710'>describing</span> <span m='195380'>is</span> <span m='195620'>called</span> <span m='196290'>engineering.</span> <span m='197290'>And</span> <span m='197470'>I</span> <span m='197550'>said</span> <span m='197780'>no,</span> <span m='198010'>no,</span> <span m='198220'>no.</span> <span m='198580'>The</span> <span m='198710'>engineers,</span> <span m='199620'>they're</span> <span m='199780'>the</span> <span m='199880'>ones</span> <span m='200080'>that</span> <span m='200180'>are</span> <span m='200310'>super</span> <span m='200630'>great</span> <span m='200910'>at</span> <span m='201320'>math.</span> </p><p><span m='201590'>And he's like,</span> <span m='201760'>no,</span> <span m='201940'>we</span> <span m='202090'>just</span> <span m='202300'>use</span> <span m='202480'>it</span> <span m='202650'>as</span> <span m='202820'>one</span> <span m='203240'>additional</span> <span m='203870'>tool.</span> <span m='204790'>That's</span> <span m='205120'>it.</span> <span m='205450'>Just</span> <span m='205730'>like</span> <span m='205890'>a</span> <span m='205950'>hammer</span> <span m='206420'>and a</span> <span m='206600'>nail</span> <span m='206910'>do</span> <span m='207000'>different</span> <span m='207350'>things,</span> <span m='208130'>to</span> <span m='208330'>make</span> <span m='209060'>a</span> <span m='209140'>product,</span> <span m='210270'>math</span> <span m='210850'>is</span> <span m='210940'>one</span> <span m='211230'>tool</span> <span m='211610'>that</span> <span m='211760'>you</span> <span m='211860'>do</span> <span m='212290'>and</span> <span m='212690'>use</span> <span m='213350'>to</span> <span m='213610'>make</span> <span m='213920'>a</span> <span m='214070'>product.</span> </p><p><span m='214580'>And</span> <span m='214820'>after</span> <span m='215110'>that</span> <span m='215520'>I</span> <span m='215670'>understood,</span> <span m='216310'>OK,</span> <span m='217010'>I</span> <span m='217140'>don't</span> <span m='217320'>like</span> <span m='217490'>to</span> <span m='217590'>do</span> <span m='217730'>math for</span> <span m='218160'>math's</span> <span m='218470'>sake,</span> <span m='218930'>but</span> <span m='219050'>I</span> <span m='219140'>do</span> <span m='219340'>like</span> <span m='219520'>to</span> <span m='219690'>apply</span> <span m='220090'>it so</span> <span m='220190'>I</span> <span m='220350'>can</span> <span m='220620'>be</span> <span m='220930'>more</span> <span m='220990'>creative.</span> <span m='222680'>The</span> <span m='223130'>advice</span> <span m='223260'>that</span> <span m='223500'>I</span> <span m='223780'>would</span> <span m='224095'>give</span> <span m='224410'>to</span> <span m='224870'>somebody</span> <span m='226270'>that</span> <span m='226460'>was,</span> <span m='226990'>or</span> <span m='227300'>is</span> <span m='227840'>my</span> <span m='228040'>younger</span> <span m='228460'>self</span> <span m='229300'>is</span> <span m='229570'>follow</span> <span m='229810'>your</span> <span m='229970'>passion.</span> <span m='231220'>That's</span> <span m='231360'>first</span> <span m='231820'>and</span> <span m='231970'>foremost,</span> <span m='233000'>and</span> <span m='233860'>continue</span> <span m='234320'>to</span> <span m='234440'>ask</span> <span m='234710'>questions,</span> <span m='235760'>and</span> <span m='235940'>continue</span> <span m='236400'>to</span> <span m='236550'>be</span> <span m='236760'>hungry</span> <span m='237340'>for</span> <span m='237920'>whatever</span> <span m='238410'>that</span> <span m='238740'>next</span> <span m='239010'>piece</span> <span m='239280'>of</span> <span m='239390'>knowledge</span> <span m='239780'>is.</span> <span m='240140'>Be</span> <span m='241150'>somebody</span> <span m='241730'>that</span> <span m='242550'>loves</span> <span m='243280'>new</span> <span m='243540'>information.</span> </p><p><span m='244270'>If</span> <span m='244600'>I</span> <span m='244930'>meet</span> <span m='245140'>somebody</span> <span m='245700'>that</span> <span m='245860'>knows</span> <span m='246010'>something</span> <span m='246410'>that</span> <span m='246570'>I</span> <span m='246950'>don't</span> <span m='247270'>know,</span> <span m='247760'>I</span> <span m='248020'>automatically</span> <span m='249150'>think</span> <span m='249340'>they're</span> <span m='249480'>my</span> <span m='249640'>new</span> <span m='249750'>best</span> <span m='250050'>friends,</span> <span m='251000'>and</span> <span m='251110'>I</span> <span m='251220'>really</span> <span m='251730'>enjoy</span> <span m='252360'>growing</span> <span m='252720'>my</span> <span m='252850'>world,</span> <span m='253310'>if for</span> <span m='253600'>nothing</span> <span m='253930'>else</span> <span m='254200'>because</span> <span m='254490'>then</span> <span m='254640'>I</span> <span m='254690'>can</span> <span m='254860'>understand</span> <span m='255410'>more</span> <span m='255630'>jokes.</span> <span m='256459'>And</span> <span m='256600'>there</span> <span m='256790'>are</span> <span m='257000'>a</span> <span m='257100'>number</span> <span m='257709'>of</span> <span m='257890'>jokes</span> <span m='258480'>that</span> <span m='258690'>just</span> <span m='258950'>engineers</span> <span m='259490'>get,</span> <span m='260079'>so</span> <span m='260380'>you</span> <span m='260510'>can</span> <span m='260690'>come</span> <span m='260940'>and</span> <span m='261079'>join</span> <span m='261300'>the</span> <span m='261399'>club.</span> </p>","file":{"id":255823,"video_id":"2701142593001","name":"70215232","duration":263147,"thumbnail_url":null}});