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Old 03-04-2009, 08:18 PM   #1
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I graduate with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in May and I want to work in the automotive industry somewhere. I obviously like performance vehicles, but I'm not picky.

Any ideas for companies to which I should send my resume? I am open to living anywhere in the US except California and Florida (Too many laws and too many hurricanes, respectively).

So, ideas are appreciated.
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Old 03-04-2009, 09:21 PM   #2
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Go work for a race team, either one of the Grand Am teams or the ALMS (American LeMans Series)...or if not maybe even NASCAR.


Good luck!

Tony
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Old 03-04-2009, 09:56 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by skidude108 View Post
I graduate with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in May and I want to work in the automotive industry somewhere. I obviously like performance vehicles, but I'm not picky.

Any ideas for companies to which I should send my resume? I am open to living anywhere in the US except California and Florida (Too many laws and too many hurricanes, respectively).

So, ideas are appreciated.
Every hurricane I've ever been through as a Floridian consisted of a day off and a few hours without power. As long as you don't live in a trailer on Miami Beach, you're fine. Also, no emissions checks and no vehicle inspections, and no state income tax (I have yet to ever pay one red cent of state income tax, w00t). People who don't live in Florida blow the idea of a hurricane way out of proportion.

Texas might be a good pick too. It's the only other state I can think of that doesn't have a state income tax.
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Old 03-04-2009, 09:59 PM   #4
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Every hurricane I've ever been through as a Floridian consisted of a day off and a few hours without power. As long as you don't live in a trailer on Miami Beach, you're fine. Also, no emissions checks and no vehicle inspections, and no state income tax (I have yet to ever pay one red cent of state income tax, w00t). People who don't live in Florida blow the idea of a hurricane way out of proportion.

Texas might be a good pick too. It's the only other state I can think of that doesn't have a state income tax.
Washington has no state income tax.

To the OP, if you're ruling out florida due to huricanes, you need to rule out many parts of texas and many other southern states as well.
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Old 03-04-2009, 10:06 PM   #5
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Yeah no kidding scratch off the gulf coast if you're worried about hurricanes.
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Old 03-04-2009, 10:49 PM   #6
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Lived in Miami for the last 8yrs, dont sweat the canes' man. I used to get calls from friends/family all over the place cuz the news was hyping it up. Most of the time it was just raining, lol
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Old 03-04-2009, 10:53 PM   #7
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I guess hurricanes were just my excuse. I've been to florida and I don't particularly like it. I guess I've never been in the panhandle though.

So we've got race team so far... any more ideas?
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Old 03-04-2009, 11:39 PM   #8
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I guess hurricanes were just my excuse. I've been to florida and I don't particularly like it. I guess I've never been in the panhandle though.

So we've got race team so far... any more ideas?
Go work for honda/toyota/some other auto company, and build cars.

It may not be performance minded in the sense of racing, but theres alot of engineering to perfect
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Old 03-05-2009, 12:08 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by skidude108 View Post
I graduate with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in May and I want to work in the automotive industry somewhere. I obviously like performance vehicles, but I'm not picky.

Any ideas for companies to which I should send my resume? I am open to living anywhere in the US except California and Florida (Too many laws and too many hurricanes, respectively).

So, ideas are appreciated.
You are right where I will be in 4 years! Please keep me updated into what you end up doing, tips would be great.

As for places to work, Honda R&D is my top place to intern at... but I dont think ill get to with my grades .

To tell you the truth, the auto industry isent the best right now so its gonna be a little hard. The racing team idea is prolly the best chance. Or maybe a citizen engineer for the navy or airforce or whatever.
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Old 03-05-2009, 03:31 PM   #10
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Here is my logic...anyone can feel free to give me a reality check if it makes no sense cause with all likelihood, I know not what I speak of.

Getting into the auto industry in a well paying job as a ME is really hard, isn't it? Dont they look for people that have a fair amount of experience rather than someone right out of school? I would think you need to go spend some time working for an engineering consulting firm first or something like that to get your resume going to the point where you can actually pick where you want to work. Again, this is only my logic and I could be talking with my chocolate starfish, but doesn't the auto industry have a lot of room to be very very picky, and especially now with the economy?

I know that up here in the PNW, lots of R&D is going on with alternative fuels, alternative energy and **** like that. Here in bellingham there are a few firms I know of that seem to be always hiring engineers. My girlfriend works for RH2 Engineering and loves it, great company. You should also check out CH2M Hill, I talked to their marketing VP a while back and one of their newer engineers and it seems like a pretty awesome company as well. I can give you several names at those two places if for some reason you're interested

More motivation to live in the PNW:
Very few counties with emissions laws, very easy emissions laws at that
Most beautiful landscape in the country in my opinion
If you're outside of the greater seattle area, people are super nice (Seattle is just like any other big city in a lot of ways unfortunately)
Tons of recreation if you're into that sort of thing, and if you live here for any amount of time, you will get into it I can almost guarantee it.
No hurricanes, tornadoes, very little snow in the winter, no texans most importantly
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Old 03-05-2009, 03:45 PM   #11
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I worked in automotive for a while. Not at a major car company, but at a supplier. We were eventually bought out, and became part of a huge supplier network. You know those cup things on the rear shelf of GM midsize cars for child seats? I designed those. Well, redesigned, really.

All automotive work is not as glamorous as you may think. You certainly won't be the guy specing out turbos or suspensions for quite a long time. More likely the poor bastard that has to figure out a way to cut costs on a 89 cent bushing.
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Old 03-05-2009, 04:44 PM   #12
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Every hurricane I've ever been through as a Floridian consisted of a day off and a few hours without power. As long as you don't live in a trailer on Miami Beach, you're fine.
ever lived through a catastrophic hurricane? I won't live in Florida.
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Old 03-05-2009, 04:56 PM   #13
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ever lived through a catastrophic hurricane? I won't live in Florida.
Amen. Gustav did extensive damage to my hometown of Houma, LA. We had to evacuate and we were not allowed back in until the parish was deemed safe by the local parish officials. We were out of town for almost a week and half sitting in a hotel room in alabama twiddling our thumbs and not working (not making money). The city is still in the process of rebuilding.

I'm kinda with the OP on hurricanes. At the very least, as far as natural disasters go, they are the most predictable. You get days of notice instead of minutes/seconds like you do with tornados and earthquakes.
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Old 03-05-2009, 04:58 PM   #14
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I worked in automotive for a while. Not at a major car company, but at a supplier. We were eventually bought out, and became part of a huge supplier network. You know those cup things on the rear shelf of GM midsize cars for child seats? I designed those. Well, redesigned, really.

All automotive work is not as glamorous as you may think. You certainly won't be the guy specing out turbos or suspensions for quite a long time. More likely the poor bastard that has to figure out a way to cut costs on a 89 cent bushing.
This is my understanding. You start at the bottom and work your way up. And at most places they're not trying to build the bestestest parts. It has to be cheap, do the job, and be cheap. And cheap too. They're in business to 1) make money, 2) everything else.
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Old 03-05-2009, 06:34 PM   #15
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Vegas, no state income tax either.
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Old 03-05-2009, 08:21 PM   #16
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Ok, how about few more ideas in the performance realm.


Independent performance companies such as:

Edelbrock
Mallory
MSD Ignitions
Richmond Gears
AutoMeter
Hypertech
Accel
etc...
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Old 03-05-2009, 08:26 PM   #17
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I have a couple friends who did the auto-company thing, and they both concluded that being a performance/sports car lover doesn't really count for anything except your spare time. One worked for Saab for about 9 months before he flipped out and quit to become a mechanic in a garage outside Boston. The other got his BSME from the GM Institute and went to work for Chevy working on suspension and brake parts; he made it about 3 years before he got bored and went to work for a company that made slot cars. Now he works for a Chinese pet-supply company.

My bosses' older brother, also a BSME, just got his farewell from Delphi.

Like most jobs, it can be OK, maybe even fun, when you float up near the top, but there's probably a lot of **** you don't want in the meantime.

I guess it means that a small race team or performance shop will be a lot more fun and interesting. Based on what I keep reading, you're probably more likely to find a job there than with a manufacturer.

Maybe surprisingly, the guy who became a mechanic is doing really well - when Star Wars took over the ignition and induction systems, the degree and experience allowed him to take over service departments at a group of high-zoot import stealerships.

Wayne's advice sounds pretty good to me. But no matter - ANY job in your field will be a winner in the current climate.

My fearless advice - be proud about being a gearhead and working on your car - maybe sneak it into your resume. The last guy I hired, I had to go pick him up at his house because his roommate didn't get home in time to bleed his brakes, so I helped him and then we did the interview. I didn't need the interview - always respect a man who will do a dirty job by himself without squeaking about it. When I got back and told my co-workers about it, they told me you'd need to be an ******* to not hire him. I agree.

What I do has nothing to do with cars, BTW.
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