My instructor has a habit of dissing engineers. I don’t think it’s a well-articulated dislike, so much as a knee-jerk reactionary position based on his lifetime in a career that is less respected in the tech field: Engineer trumps electrician, therefore electrician is casually resentful.
He refers to them as having pocket protectors, which is an interesting coding for nerd, since I don’t think pocket protectors have been common in over 25 years. As that is the average age of my classmates, do they even know what a pocket protector is, and that they weren’t always just associated with geekery? My instructor uses a lot of funny colloquialisms in his speech, actually, so maybe my classmates just take it all in stride.
I find the anti-engineer stance to be a bit much. The instructor’s rants tend to involve stories of how 3 engineers were paid $130 each per hour to solve a problem, and they couldn’t do it, and finally an electrician was the one to come up with the solution. It’s part of the anti-academic mindset I’ve encountered a lot in the trades, where any university-based education is seen as being a waste of time or for losers without “real” skills.
Obviously, coming from a university background, I’m pretty invested in countering this viewpoint! Because I hate to think that the 7 years I spent doing my degree were a waste of time.
That aside, it’s also an interesting position for an instructor to take, because it contradicts his supposed role as a mentor. I mean, wouldn’t he like to see us make the most of our abilities? I’m good at a lot of the math and problem-solving parts of our trade, so think I’d actually really like to pursue engineering at some point. Shouldn’t a teacher encourage students to seek challenges like this?