The pathway to success is paved with more than a little advice. Students, job candidates and employees need public speaking skills, and they also need to learn the craft of salesmanship. In addition, some experts predict that regardless of college major, everyone needs coding skills. Finance and accounting majors need big data analysis skills. If this is starting to sound like a potpourri of requirements, well, that’s the point. In the future, success at work will be characterized by the ability to excel in more than one discipline or area – and an interdisciplinary degree could be vital.
Pasi Lautala, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering and director of the Rail Transportation Institute at Michigan Tech, tells GoodCall®,
If interdisciplinary was a novelty in the past, today it’s becoming a standard.
In fact, Lautala says it should be the expected norm, since it’s rare for anything to be developed or completed under a single disciplinary.
“We’re witnessing that first hand in the development of 21st century transportation, where automated vehicles, trains, drones, etcetera, are all dependent on the interdisciplinary components, such as intelligent transportation systems infrastructure, alternative power and propulsion systems and constant communication/information exchange between vehicles and infrastructure.”
As a result, Lautala says, “Civil, mechanical, electrical, and even materials engineers are all under the same umbrella.”