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Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/11/2007 10:19 AM

Is it possible to enter a Doctorate in Economics program being a Mechanical Engineer?

I have been looking at the UCSD (University of California in San Diego) Doctorate program in Economics and it looks pretty interesting. However, I have never heard of someone going straight into a crossover doctorate, usually you first become a Master in your second area and then go for the doctorate.

I have already emailed a few universities but didn't get an answer yet.

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#1

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/11/2007 1:30 PM

Oh no it's Del again!

Do you seriously expect any engineers to have a high opinion of economists?

Economics isn't a science...

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/11/2007 2:48 PM

Are those guys called 'Bean Counters"? Also the bane of modern engineers as they see their jobs going off-shore?

To my surprise I am starting to see a few companies refuse to offshore their work. The managers are saying that the return on investment and exactitude of the work has fallen. So when will the laws change and the educational dollar come back home?

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#3

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/11/2007 11:26 PM

Shouldn't be a problem - grad track usually but not always goes through MA/MS on the way to PhD. A small bit of advice, though. Don't ask them if you can do it. Tell them that you're doing it. Give them no wiggle room at all. And be prepared to forget everything you know about science, the scientific method, and mathematics. And if you find a prof who even recognizes the name David Ricardo, sign up for the course. I'll pray for you

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#4

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/11/2007 11:53 PM

I kind of did what your trying to do. I was a junior in ME (Aerospace option at OK State) when a Mechanics of Deformable Bodies Grad Student Teacher wanted us to give speeches in class. Since I had an impossible fear of public speaking, I rationalized that a Degree in Business would make more since. I left Engineering for Business and have regretted it ever since. Do what makes you happy. Economics is part science, part psychology. Your never left with a solid answer because there are too many variables to consider. Machines aren't always easy to understand but they are easier to understand than humans. If you like what you do, then that is success as long as you can pay your bills and have enough money left over to flee the country when the illegals take over. Hope this helps.

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#5

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/12/2007 12:02 AM

MBA would be a great and "hireable" degree to get on your way to Doctorate of Economics. Give you great context as well.

If you can do ME, youshould have no problem handling the economics flavor of calculus, but the twisted thinking is nowhere near as obvious as statics...

milo

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#6

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/12/2007 8:12 AM

"I have been looking at the UCSD (University of California in San Diego) Doctorate program in Economics and it looks pretty interesting"

Why? Just because something looks interesting (greener grass etc etc) is not on its own a good reason to go jumping from engineering to economics. If you have a well thought out strategy that builds on your training and experience to date then it may have some merit. You have to demonstrate clearly why you "will" do this - as mentioned elsewhere, you should be forceful in your approach to a uni. Failing to do this will simply make you look (like a blonde?) foolish.

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#7

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/12/2007 8:52 AM

I cannot believe that anyone with a Masters Degree in a Science would even consider going into such an Anti-Scientific field.

Sort of like a Brain Surgeon deciding to become a Witch Doctor.

Give 100 Economists the same problem and get 100 different answers!

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#8
In reply to #7

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/12/2007 11:34 AM

If you have a MS in Mech Engineering, most non-science PhD programs will find you a desirable candidate just for the prestige of having candidates with math skills interested. Economist love to claim mathematic skills equivalent to physicists and higher engineering, so you would bring some validation to a program. The only thing with economic is that, much like business, the real world is much more influenced by the prestige/name recognition of the university from which you graduate than the skills obtained or program quality. As such, places like Harvard, Stanford and Yale have a lot of prestige and would build your resume. I am not sure that UCSD has that kind of prestige. It is a nice campus, but does not have the prestige of Berkeley, Stanford, UCLA or even Davis. It would probably be hugely more beneficial to look at UCLA for a change such as this.

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#9
In reply to #8

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/12/2007 3:43 PM

I am just a Bachelor. But thanks for the tips.

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#10
In reply to #9

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/12/2007 11:57 PM

If you are unhappy with your current profession and you want to try something else, thats a great thing to do, especially if you don't have responsibilities to a wife and children. However, bear in mind that sometimes we think the grass looks greener on the other side of the fence. But when we get over there we find it is mostly crabgrass and lots of dog poop.

Look before you leap, and don't fall on your face.

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#12
In reply to #10

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/16/2007 10:44 AM

The reason of the switch is because I want to work in Economic Development, not because of the greener pastures.

The reason of a PhD is because I can almost surely do it for free while Diplomas and Masters are paid and expensive everywhere.

I am able to get scholarships to study in Brazil, Italy or USA. Not sure about other countries.

If it was to improve my current career I would study a Master in Agricultural Mechanization, but I haven't been able to find a good university for that. Not even a university that offers that.

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#11
In reply to #7

Re: Being a ME, becoming an Economist

10/14/2007 11:11 AM

Give 100 Economists the same problem and get 100 different answers!

Don't be silly..

You would get far more than that!

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Users who posted comments:

Anonymous Poster (3); dbdwoods (1); Del the cat (2); gussosa (2); ktel60 (1); Milo (1); prbarry (1); Techart (1)

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