Aerospace Engineering graduate destinations

Engineering graduates are highly employable, with well developed skills in areas such as numeracy, team working, report writing and creativity. Bristol graduates are in demand, with the university's high academic standards and excellent teaching attracting many recruiters.

Data obtained from

  • Single honours Aerospace Engineering courses (BEng and MEng), including those with study abroad
  • Graduates from the UK 

Responses were received from 57 UK graduates from 2019/20; this is a response rate of 71.3%


Most important activityPercentage of graduates
Paid work for an employer 56.1%
Self-employment/freelancing 1.8%
Running my own business 3.5%
Developing a creative, artistic or professional portfolio 0%
Voluntary/unpaid work for an employer 0%
Engaged in a course of study, training or research 19.3%
Taking time out to travel 3.5%
Caring for someone 0%
Retired 0%
Unemployed and looking for work 8.8%
Doing something else 7%

Sector information

Of those who start work, a large number typically embark on an engineering or manufacturing career; the remainder enter a huge range of unrelated occupations that do not require a specific degree, as around 70% of jobs are open to graduates of any discipline, and the broad skills base of engineering graduates is appreciated. This can include working in high profile areas such as business, finance, law and the Civil Service, as well as those which might seem more unrelated such as advertising, journalism and social work.

Employment sectorNumber of graduates

Engineering activities and related technical consultancy


Manufacture of air and spacecraft and related machinery


Manufacture of military fighting vehicles


Information technology consultancy activities

Other sectors (15 sectors) 17

Employers and occupations

Those entering engineering will find possibilities in a range of different functions, although the exact spread of opportunities will vary according to your degree subject. Functions include research and development, design, consultancy, production, contracting and commercial work such as sales and marketing. Your career need not be confined by your original choice of function - indeed some mobility is built into many training schemes.

Examples of employers

  • Airbus Group
  • Frazer-Nash Consultancy Ltd
  • Microsoft
  • Ministry of Defence
  • Unilever plc

There are also opportunities to apply one's scientific training and knowledge in new ways such as patent work, health and safety, and technical writing. Engineering offers the chance to apply your personal values in a huge range of contexts, from defence to development.

Examples of occupations

  • Aerodynamicist
  • Graduate Systems Engineer
  • Graduate Data Analyst
  • Radio Freqeuncy Systems Engineer
  • Technical Consultant

Further study

Anyone wishing to continue on to postgraduate study will find exciting opportunities at both Master's and PhD level, with funding more readily available than in most disciplines.

Qualification typePercentage of graduates

Higher degree, mainly by research (e.g. PhD, DPhil, MPhil, MRes)


Higher degree, mainly by taught course (e.g. MA, MSc, MBA)


Postgraduate diploma or certificate (including PGCE/PGDE)


Professional qualification


Undergraduate degree (including integrated master’s degrees) (e.g. BA, BSc, MBChB, MEng)

Other undergraduate diploma or certificate not specified above 0%
Other qualification 8.3%
Not aiming for a formal qualification 0%

I often find that my Bristol education allows me to talk confidently on many aerospace subjects, and generally in more breadth and depth than colleagues with differing or more specialised degree backgrounds (such as Motorsport Engineering). Being accredited by the engineering council, a Bristol degree also allows for continued professional development and enabled me to become a chartered engineer with the IMechE.

Tim, Experimental Aerodynamicist, Scuderia Ferrari (MEng Aeronautical Engineering)

Connect with alumni

Use Bristol Connects and LinkedIn to find out what others from your course are doing now and how they can help you.

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