Why the change? Several reasons, after a big project this summer, doing something no one else has ever done in FEA, specifically fatigue on a specific ambiguously loaded assembly, I felt like I had reached a decision point, go farther down the FEA technical path (get a PhD) or do something else. My learning had reached a plateau. Secondly, there are about eight different design engineer positions at my company I would have been interested in and one was vacated. So I applied, interviewed, and next thing you know my computer is moved to the new group. Third, I will continue with the product group I have been working with the past two and a half years which will enable me to see more aspects of the product development process.
It is not a promotion, technically it's called a lateral, but I will have more responsibility. I will also be exposed to more people and aspects of product development than my old position. There is a lot to be said for developing relationships and I look forward to the very human, listening aspect of this position.
Today was my first day. I have much to learn and it is humbling to walk away from something I am skilled at to something I don't really understand. Here goes learning to do.