L.Devore, So you want to be a carpenter, go for it, ok, at first its will be sleepless nights wondering, "did I do right", I'll tell you now its one of the best jobs in the world, in every country they want carpenters I know,I've been around Europe and in each country the money was good, ok at times it could have been beter, but thats in all jobs. OK, first get a job as a carpenters helper (mate), watch how its done, get your certificates, learn the basics,and as an experienced engineer, you are not dumb. so you will learn quick ( I hope). When you think you are able to build a house from start to finish, frame work/first fix second fix and then finishing you can then choose which part of the construction industry you want to be in. Working in concrete ( making the boxes ( shuttering)for concerte forms. timerframe buildings/roofing (take care with the roofing "its a young mans job" its ok for a while but you get older and slower and the timber gets heaver.. But housing is only a part of the construction business, look around and see what you like. I myself became a chippy many years ago,then learn all about woodworm/dryrot and you can make a lot of money if you know your job in that field, but you must know the job, some of the clients you will be doing work for know more about the work than you do, and they always ask questions about what you think they have growing in their basement, they already know but they are seeing if you do...( so learn) and if you ever go overseas, then you must show the local carpenters what you want them to do, show them, you make the first one, this way they will know that you know what you are doing, The world is yours if you dare to grab it....Good luck. John 2000.