Hey Pud,

I’m Brazilian. My English isn’t perfect but I understand most of what you’ve said in your blog and I love it. I like the way you say things, you know?

Here’s my question. I’m studying industrial engineering at college, which I think is a good career. But I’m not sure what I want in my life, and I feel so tired of all this. I can’t wait to finish and go somewhere else in Europe, or even the US, and live there for a few years.

I want to meet different people and have a different life! Should quit school and travel, or wait until it ends? I have about 2 more years until I graduate.

Thanks for your time.

24 years old


Engineering is interesting.

Doctors and lawyers require a degree before they can call themselves that. Of course, law is the basis of modern society and doctors got lives in their hands.

But many people feel the same way about engineering — if you don’t have an engineering degree, you can’t call yourself an engineer, and you shouldn’t expect an engineering job.

That said, times are changing. With college-dropout software engineers leading the pack, the tools to become a masterful engineer are available to almost anyone right now. And unlike saying you’re a doctor or a lawyer, it’s kind of easy & harmless to prove your engineering skills.

And you won’t kill anyone if you suck at it.

But there are enough engineering snobs out there that’d you’d be hurting your chances of getting an entry-level engineering job if you quit now. Of course, maybe you don’t want one.

Here is the answer to your question: Pick a country in Europe or a place in the US you’d like to visit (i could give you that answer too, but you didn’t ask. okay fine. in the u.s., pick NYC. in europe, if you speak spanish as many brazillians do, pick barcelona. consider that a bonus answer.). Enroll in an engineering school there, start a new life, new friends, and you will be happy.


9 Responses to “Brazillian”

  1. 1 Anonymous November 3, 2007 at 3:54 pm

    “And you won’t kill anyone if you suck at it.”

    What planet do you live on, Pud? An incompetent doctor can only kill people one at a time. An engineering mistake can kill thousands when a bridge falls down in a storm, or a structural engineer forgets to take into account for the fuel in the planes that smash into the building he structurally designed & planned so the architect’s cosmetic design could be built.

    There are plenty of crappy Engineers out there. I know, I work with some. Most do not screw up in ways that directly kill people, but some do. Even bad software can kill. Remember Bill Gate’s remark years ago about embedding Windows CE in everything including medical equipment? When that happens, its only a matter of time before “General Protection Fault” finds its way as the listed cause of death on Death Certificates.

  2. 2 Anonymous November 3, 2007 at 4:03 pm

    Are you nuts? Engineer cannot kill being incompetent? Try with a building or bridge engineer who messes up structural design. You think that this will not kill anybody? I beg to differ.
    Even being a lousy driver can kill a person or two.

    Julia – first of all, decide what you want to do in your life, what will make you happy, and don’t be afraid to follow the dream. Education received from a school may be not the MOST important thing in your life (health, family, character are), but it certainly makes your future life MUCH easier. Same as money. Without them life may be a major pain. Education gives you tools that are going to allow you search for knowledge later in your life. With education is like with skill of swimming or driving – everybody should have it. Maybe you will never swim or drive in your life, but when life puts you in a position that it will be required, you will be ready.

    Finish your school! Master your English (and 3 other foreign languages while you at it), and hit the road to conquer the world. You ARE still young.


  3. 3 Touge King November 7, 2007 at 9:45 am

    Pud, I think you screwed up this time 😛

  4. 4 Anonymous November 7, 2007 at 11:13 am

    Pud, they speak Portuguese in Brazil, not Spanish…

    Nice effort, but not close enough (especially if you ask a Brazilian about it).

  5. 5 Pud November 7, 2007 at 5:16 pm

    Last poster – As I wrote, “many Brazilians” speak Spanish.

    They *all* speak Portuguese.

  6. 6 Anonymous November 9, 2007 at 7:12 pm



  7. 7 Anonymous November 30, 2007 at 1:37 pm

    It depends on the sort of engineering. Want to write code? Drop out and go for it! Want to build bridges, spaceships, or nuclear power plants? Get the piece of paper or they’ll slam the door on your foot.

  8. 8 Anonymous December 13, 2007 at 11:06 am

    Don’t try to work in the US as an industrial engineer as the career path goes like this: You get a job. Work for two years getting a production line running. You get laid off. The company packs up the plant and unpacks it in some far off country. You look for another job.

  9. 9 bolson67 December 29, 2007 at 2:50 pm

    I will agree with Pud on the “won’t kill anyone”, mainly because you would never get hired to build a bridge, (without a degree.)

    Although you should come to Los Angeles, rather than NY. Better weather, cheaper housing, better beaches.. and if you do speak Spanish, well..that’s LA.

    There are several colleges and Universities here for you to continue your education and you can get a student visa to enter the country.

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