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The Automotive Engineering Business and Industry

Vishal Singh

Independent Study
Mrs. Graves
June 3, 2016

WHAT I KNEW/WANTED TO KNOW


Automobiles are a major convenience in our everyday lives. Without them, it
would be very hard to get to school, work, etc. Even though I am interested in sports cars,
such as Lamborghinis, Ferraris, etc., I thought it would be worth my time to investigate
the process of general automobile engineering and industry, since automobiles are so
critical in the 21st century.
When I began to research, I knew a sufficient amount about cars and how they
work, but I didnt know about the engineering process behind it. I decided to research it
since I have considered automobile engineering as a career choice for my future since I
was always told by my parents to pursue something that I have always been passionate
about. If not, then there is no point in working in the future with something I dont like. I
have been passionate with cars and automobiles and have been a hardcore fanboy ever
since I was a little boy as a two year old, from playing with Hot Wheels toys, to playing
tons of racing video games for nearly 14 years and continuing, to watching the Fast &
Furious movie series, to now doing an iSearch about the engineering process of cars and
automobiles. Although other topics such as aviation and graphic design were considered,
I decided that eventually automobiles will be the heart of my research.
I knew automobile engineering existed, because if not, then how would cars exist?
But what I didnt know is how it worked. So I decided to look into this topic much
further with these questions in mind: What is the process of automobile engineering
(which primarily focuses on what the automotive engineers do)? What experience and

education is required? How can this research help me reach the destination of my career
path? How can I turn this into a potential mentorship/capstone project? I decided to start
my research in the basics of this field of engineering.
THE SEARCH
My search began in the beginning of April to all the way until the end of May, and
I wanted to be sure that I was confident that my questions have been answered. There was
a major interruption during my research, mainly only due to AP exam priorities.
The search first began by searching the process of automobile engineering on
Google. An article titled Automobile Engineer on Plan Career was my first destination
for my research. It talked about all of the major components involved with automobile
engineering, as well as the specific roles and processes. I deemed this source as valid
since it was a career website, which answered my first question: What is the process of
automobile engineering? After viewing this website, I thought to myself, Wow, this all
seems really complicated but very interesting at the same time. Even the most complex
functions can be the most amusing at times.
Afterwards, I decided to answer my next two questions: What experience is
required? How can this research help me reach the destination of my career path? I
discovered a website called EducatingEngineers, which outlined a specific field of
engineering, what requirements and education are required, and also potential careers.
After discovering this website, I realized that the classes I am taking now will help me go
further, and also I outlined classes I will take in the future that could help me with

automobile engineering. I eventually got bored and started wandering around the website,
and I accidentally discovered a part of a website that shows what colleges offer degrees in
any field of engineering. So I looked up colleges that offered automobile engineering
degrees. I was soon shocked in disappointment that none of my dream colleges that are
in-state such as Virginia Tech or University of Virginia were not on the list. I was starting
to become discouraged whether I should continue with automobile engineering, and even
came across some alternatives that I am just as passionate about, aviation. Then I thought
to myself, Oh well, Ill find a school later on, there will still be a chance that I will
continue on with automobile engineering.
On May 19th, 2016, I had sent out a request to interview to Mr. Torrisi, a local car
mechanic in Virginia Beach. I was able to find him by searching local car mechanics on
Google, and I thought that mechanics would be a worthy source of information because
they know the process of automotive engineering and work with it everyday, and how
cars work (which was the original intent of the search, but thought that I should probably
learn about the field itself and worry about the functions of the products for my future
education), as well as answer the question of How can I turn this into a potential
mentorship/capstone project? I was able to select Mr. Torrisi due to his positive reviews
of his shop. Unfortunately, I received no response at all, and I was both very shocked and
disappointed. This was a learning experience for me. First, one thing I will change in the
future is to find a mentor who has a much more professional experience. Second, I wish I
had managed my time much more effectively, and sought aid from Mrs. Graves to find a

professional. Third, the request for interview experience and doing my research started to
give me an idea of what I might not want to do with my senior project, but I started to
explore more options of what I could do later on. However, I decided to continue on
anyways with my research.
Afterwards, I decided to investigate some benefits of automotive engineering and
find some more info on the experience of an automotive engineer. I came across
Automotive Engineer Job Information from the National Careers Service and What does
an Automotive Engineer Really Do? by Your Future in Automotive. I used these sources
since they gave insight on what experience automotive engineers obtain. I was amazed by
some of the benefits and experiences these engineers achieved, and even though I became
slightly discouraged during the search, I decided to keep auto engineering on the plate for
potential future choices.
Towards the end of my search, I decided to do some research on the automotive
industry in the United States. I looked into The Automotive Industry in the United States
by SelectUSA, and utilized this source since it is an official United States Government
website that looks over all of the major industries of the country. Based on my research, I
decided that automotive engineering should remain on my plate since automotive
engineering in the United States is one of the more successful industries in the country.

THE RESULTS
An automotive engineer spends a lot of time on planning and designing
both systems and machines for automobiles. Then engineers apply physical and
mathematical principles to these plans to make sure they are viable. After designing the
end product, testing is done on the product to ensure it is safe to use. Engineers specialize
in specific areas, and exhaust systems, engines, and structural design tend to be the most
popular. Most automobile engineers tend to get a masters degree in a field such as
automotives or automobile engineering.1
Starting in high school, engineers should develop a solid base in physics,
chemistry, trigonometry, algebra, and pre-calculus. Engineers should take AP classes in
such subjects if possible. Im already almost finished with Pre-Calculus and AP
Chemistry this year, and will be taking Magnet Physics and AP Calculus BC next year,
and thinking about taking AP Physics C senior year, as Differential Equations and
Multivariable Calculus. Engineers should consider going to engineering school for
college that provides hand-on experience, and apply coursework to real life situations.
Bachelors Degrees that can help include, but not limited to, are Automobile Dynamics,
Automotive Electronics, Engine Parts, Diesel Parts, Diesel Engine Theory, Alternative
Energy Sources, Fuel Source Systems, and Powertrain Dynamics. Masters Degrees that
can help include, but not limited to, are Design and Manufacturing, Energy and
Environment, Materials, Noise and Vibration, Dynamics and Control, Electronics and
Computer Software, and Ergonomics. Careers for automotive engineering include, but

not limited to, are Automotive Manufacturing, Original Equipment Manufacturing,


Systems & Components Manufacturing, and Engine Manufacturing.2
The engineers are involved with design (new products are designed and existing
ones are improved), research and development (researching and developing solutions to
any problems that arise), and production (planning and carrying out the processes), and
has major implementation of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.
Automotive engineering is global and encourages engineers to expand their horizons and
think outside of the box and also involves working with a large team and working
independently, encouraging individualism.3,4
Automotives are one of the largest markets for automobiles is in the United States.
The U.S. contains factories from manufacturers from all over the world, such as Toyota,
BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai-Kia, Nissan, etc. There is a major network supplying
parts to the industry, suppliers profited about $225.2 billion in shipments in 2012. In
addition, the industry was responsible for around 3.62 million jobs nationwide, one of the
most prosperous industries in the manufacturing sector, as well as 2.6 million vehicles at
a total value of $63 billion were exported to more than 200 countries from the U.S. Parts
were exported at around $75 billion. The United States automotive industry has an open
investment policy, a large consumer market, a highly skilled workforce, available
infrastructure, and government incentives. Industry associations include American
Automotive Policy Council, Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association, Auto
Alliance, Automotive Parts Rebuilders Association, Motor & Equipment Manufacturers
Association, Original Equipment Suppliers Association, Specialty Equipment Market

Association, Association of Global Automakers.5


MY GROWTH AS A WRITER
This has been a very intriguing research project, extremely unique from anything I
have done before. This is mostly due to the fact that I could research anything I wanted
to, and not restricted to a curriculum, and start completely from scratch. This project
allowed me to expand my horizons and let me jump out of my comfort zone. It was
difficult, but it is indeed good preparation for future research. I was unfortunate that I was
not able to conduct an interview, but it was a very valuable learning experience, as well
as this whole project. I learned how to write a letter, an academic resume, and a proposal.
With the topic itself, even though I was amazed by the things I learned, I decided
this might not be the best choice for me in the future, but will still consider it if an
opportunity ever arises. The research didnt exactly go in the direction I wanted it to go,
but I was still able to learn a lot and enjoyed the experience. I will definitely go into a line
of engineering and no matter what I do, automobiles will still be a passion, and I could
turn that passion into a hobby, then turn that hobby to a future.

WORKS CITED
1. Automobile Engineer. (n.d.). Retrieved April 06, 2016, from
http://plancareer.org/en/career/7/1134/automobile-engineer-career-option-andrequirements.html
2. Automotive Engineer Jobs and Careers | EducatingEngineers.com. (n.d.).
Retrieved May 13, 2016, from http://educatingengineers.com/careers/automotiveengineer
3. Automotive engineer job information | National Careers Service
_tag.DCSext.LoggedIn=0;. (n.d.). Retrieved May 26, 2016, from
https://nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk/advice/planning/jobprofiles/Pages/auto
motiveengineer.aspx
4. What does an automotive engineer really do? (n.d.). Retrieved May 26, 2016, from
http://www.yourfutureinautomotive.com/career-advice/what-does-automotiveengineer-really-do
5. Automotive Industry Spotlight." Automotive Industry Spotlight. SelectUSA, n.d.
Web. 26 May 2016.