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5 Tips for an EIT

Being an engineer in training is no easy task. With a lot of studies and credentials already under your belt, you are still training and studying to become a Professional Engineer. Needless to say, you have a lot on your plate.

How do you stay focused to ensure professional progress? Our CEO and P.E., Michael Groselle, shares his top 5 tips that could help any EIT during this process.

  1. Take Copious Notes

  2. Ask Questions

  3. Find a Mentor

  4. Take Extreme Ownership in Your Work

  5. Lead Meeting When Possible

Take Notes

Notes are essential for learning any task at hand. Get accustomed to utilizing technology, like a laptop, tablet, or computer to take detailed notes. Your notes are your gateway to making sure that you have correct and reliable information. No one wants to work with the person who asks the same questions over and over because they are too lazy to write it down. Be proactive, be prepared to take notes, and stay organized.

Ask Questions

Here at MES, we like to think that no question is a “dumb” question. If you have a question, chances are that others have the same question. Ask your co-workers for advice or help if needed. Nine times out of ten, people are willing to lend a helping hand as much as they can because we as humans feel good about sharing our knowledge. Asking questions means that you are genuinely interested and willing to learn.

Find a Mentor

This is most likely the most important tip of all, and the part that I personally have found to be the most valuable. Having a mentor is a lot more than just having someone to answer your questions. A mentor provides a guiding voice, a sense of community, and a certain level of comfort that any young and learning human yearns for. I found a mentor in my direct boss at my first job as an EIT and it has helped mold me into the engineer that I am today. I was able to learn his methods, hear his stories (good and bad), participate in meetings, and see a path that made sense. If you don’t have or know of a clear path to take (in any career), it can make for a stressful and confusing experience. A mentor helps bridge that gap and provide a helping hand that can’t come from reading a book or manual on “how to be an engineer”.
Take Extreme Ownership in Your Work

I spent a lot of time learning methods as an EIT. What now takes me an hour to do, took me 5 hours to do back then. I realized that books and Google searches are valuable tools for learning Auto CAD software, calculations, and engineering methods. Even though I spent a lot of my time as an EIT figuring out HOW to do a task, I was able to create better procedures or methods to complete a task for my firm which are still being utilized today. I was able to take ownership of my work, take the time to learn, and improve the process for the next person. To this day, I am proud of the work I did as an EIT, and know that I made an impact on the company.

Lead a Meeting

The only way to grow is to do things that are uncomfortable. Do things that are outside of your comfort zone. Push your limits. One way that I did this was by leading a meeting when I wasn’t necessarily an expert at doing so. Leading that meeting put me outside of my comfort zone which allowed me to grow. I had to over prepare so that I would not look like an unknowledgeable engineer. How else will you get better at leading meetings if you don’t start somewhere?

To summarize, there is a lot of things I wish I knew to be a perfect EIT. Use your mistakes as growth opportunities to get better and don’t sweat the small stuff. Keep pushing on!

By Michael Groselle, P.E.

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