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Minors & Career Options

The solid foundation in high technology problem-solving provided by an electrical and computer engineering degree is a good background for pre-medicine, as well as careers in business, law, art and design, audio engineering, international studies and music. Learn more about how an electrical and computer science background can help prepare you for many career options, including:

Students who are interested in pursuing any of the minors or other academic program options below are strongly encouraged to meet with an ECE advisor in order to determine the best academic plan for your career goals.

Become a Licensed Engineer

Some engineers may choose to get licensed, particularly in fields like civil engineering. Electrical engineers may wish to get licensed as well, especially if you choose to specialize in power engineering. If you go this route, there are two exams you will take:

Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam: normally taken during senior year of college. Measures minimum competency to enter the profession.

Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) exam: field-specific, usually taken after four years of experience after college. Related to Electrical and Computer Engineering are Electrical and Computer: Computer, Electrical and Computer: Electrical and Electronics, and Electrical and Computer: Power.

Preparation for the FE exam: The core ECE program will prepare you for the exam, but you may wish to pay particular attention to statics, dynamics and materials. If you wish for a review, the Department of Mechanical Engineering offers a review course every spring, Engineering (ENGR) 4510. There are two sections of this course. One meets two evenings each week and the other is taught as a distance learning course. Contact Prof. Mendelsohn at mendelsohn.1@osu.edu for information about current offerings. You will need to apply for the exam at least 90 days in advance. Study materials are available online.

Medical School Preparation

An ECE degree provides great preparation for medical school. ECE technology is so important in medicine today that ECE-trained physicians and medical researchers are in high demand. ECE preparation will also make you stand out among medical school applicants.

Students completing a combined ECE/premed program can fulfill the requirements for entrance to medical school by taking additional courses, primarily in organic chemistry and biology, beyond the ECE degree requirements. 

Here you can find a full list of requirements for admission to the medical school. If you are planning to apply to medical school, be sure to plan on taking the MCAT exam.

Additional Information:

OSU pre-health advising program
OSU health-related student organizations

Law School Preparation

A degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering would be extremely helpful if you are interested in a career in patent law (including intellectual property, patents, and copyrights), or public policy and law as they relate to technology.

Tips for preparing for law school

Law School and Engineers (OSU College of Engineering)
OSU Pre-Professional Programs: Pre-Law
Department of Sociology University Student Services Pre-Law Resources
American Bar Association: Intellectual Property Law

Related Ohio State Organizations

IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc) OSU Student Chapter
Delta Theta Phi
Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity

Minors

Add a minor to your ECE degree. There are several minors offered at Ohio State that would benefit pre-law students such as:

Biomedical Engineering
Criminology
Communication
Entrepreneurship
General Business Minor
Legal Foundations of Society
Political Science
Sociology

The Moritz College of Law offers a study abroad program for pre-law students where juniors and seniors study American and British law at Oxford University in London, England.

Attend the Law School Fair held each autumn to meet officials from more than 40 law schools.

Additional Information

Law School Admission Council
Moritz College of Law

Business Careers

Did you know that according to a survey of S&P 500 CEOs, fully 23% of them were educated as engineers? [1]

Even though US colleges and universities grant four times as many business degrees as engineering degrees, an engineer is six times as likely to become the CEO of an S&P 500 company. Furthermore, these aren’t just engineering companies; engineers head up companies like Exxon, Wells Fargo, Hartford Financial Services, and Progressive insurance. [2]

Managing technical projects requires a sound technical preparation was well as knowledge of management, finance and business. You can prepare for technical management or entrepreneurship while completing your ECE requirements. Other options include a minor in business, or combining a technical bachelor’s degree with a master’s in business administration.

Interested in technical management? Consider taking courses in:

  • Economics
  • Political Science
  • Comparative Studies
  • International Studies
  • Sociology
  • Anthropology

You might then take directed electives in:

Interested in entrepreneurship? Consider:

[1] G. C. Orsak, "Engineers: the new leadership class," in Electronic Business on the EDN Network, 2006.
[2] M. T. Gibbons, "The year in numbers," in 2005 Profiles in Engineering, American Society for Engineering Education.

Design Minor

Often, the hardware and/or software designed by ECEs includes a human interface component. Good design principles for these interfaces are not easily described by equations, but rather have an artistic aspect. If this boundary between form and function interests you, then you may want to consider a design minor.

The design minor builds a solid understanding of the principles, processes and applications of design. The minor consists of 18 credit hours from the Department of Industrial, Interior and Visual Communication Design.

Audio Engineering

If you are interested in preparing for a career in audio engineering, we suggest choosing ECE electives that will help you gain expertise in digital signal processing, digital and analog circuit design, and acoustics. Additionally, you may be interested in coursework in music (e.g., audio recording) or in speech and hearing science. Finally, you should consider pursuing an individual study or group project with an audio focus.

International Studies Preparation

In your career it is very likely you will work on international teams. In order to gain experience working in an international climate, you may wish to enhance your language skills, study abroad, or live in a global awareness community on campus.

Develop a theme, such as economics, international business, global studies, development studies, or study a particular region. Many of your courses can count toward your ECE degree.

International Studies offers many minors that may be of interest, including:

  • African Studies
  • Development Studies
  • East Asian Studies
  • Globalization Studies
  • International Relations & Diplomacy
  • Latin American Studies
  • Middle East Studies
  • Security & Intelligence
  • Slavic & East European Studies
  • West European Studies

You might then take directed electives in:

Consider taking your required general education courses in comparative studies, international studies, sociology, anthropology, geography, specific languages and cultures, linguistics, history, political science, and African-American and African Studies

Music Minor

Would you like to learn about audio recording, music synthesis, or music technology, and eventually pursue an internship or co-op with a musical/audio electronics company? Are you a musician with an interest in marching band, choir, chorus, glee club, athletic band, jazz ensemble, or other ensemble? Would you like to compose, improvise, learn voice, learn new instruments or voice, or just enhance your musical skills? Then a music minor may be for you.

The music minor is organized to allow for student flexibility and to balance academic and applied course work in music. It consists of 15 hours of coursework from the School of Music. Students have the flexibility to select coursework from musicology, music theory, ensembles and applied classes.