Howard Wolowitz, the character who knows a lot of doctors but isn’t one himself. Howard’s career has been at the mercy of Sheldon’s ridicule for years but at least he has clarified that he thinks that Howard is obviously good at what he does, but it’s just that what he does is not worth doing. That being said, Howard’s resume and career choices certainly have some pretty impressive inclusions, and for the record, he has gotten Sheldon back many times.
Howard has not only made some questionable dating choices, but also questionable choices in the workplace. From working with the military to building the satellite that orbits Jupiter, Howard has been involved in some pretty impressive projects, but there are also some decisions, such as his work on the waste disposal system that didn’t exactly give him the best reputation.
WORST: Returning To The Military Project
In season 10 episode 23, ‘The Gyroscopic Collapse’, Howard, Leonard, and Sheldon return to their lab to discover that all their equipment is gone as Colonel Williams had it removed and would not give them any more information. In season 11 episode 8, ‘The Tesla Recoil’, Howard and Leonard discover that Sheldon has been working with the military again behind their backs and Howard introduces the idea to get back at Sheldon.
Howard and Leonard decide to work with Barry Kripke who ends up stealing their idea and going to the Military himself. If Howard had not suggested they go behind Sheldon’s back, they wouldn’t have had Barry steal their credit.
BEST: Working On The Jupiter Satellite
Early on in the show, Howard also revealed that he helped build the satellite that orbits Jupiter’s largest moon and takes high-resolution photos of the giant planet.
Building a satellite of that importance is certainly a great career move for any engineer. Even though Sheldon constantly makes fun of Howard for not having a doctorate, Sheldon’s work is mostly theoretical whereas Howard has actually worked on a functioning satellite.
WORST: Trying To Get The Nickname “Rocketman”
In season 5 episode 15, ‘The Friendship Contraction’, Howard notes that all the other astronauts have great nicknames and decides that he wants one for himself. Knowing that the nicknames are given essentially by chance Howard sets up the song “Rocketman” as his ringtone and asks Raj to play it while he’s talking to one of the other astronauts in the hopes that ‘Rocketman’ will be his new nickname.
However, this plan largely backfires when, as he is on the call, his mother shouts upstairs asking if he wants “fruit loops”, which evidently becomes the nickname he is known for to his dismay.
BEST: Dropping Out Of Medicine
For those who may have forgotten, Howard Wolowitz’s initial career was not engineering. In season 2 episode 22, ‘The Classified Materials Turbulence’, it was revealed that Howard initially went to medical school but dropped out as he hated the sight of blood.
Not only was this a strange career move for someone who hates blood, but if Howard continued down this route he would have never gone into space which is arguably the greatest achievement of his career.
WORST: Not Getting A Doctorate
Each of the main characters of the show is a genius in their own right with even Penny having more life experience and street smarts than the rest of the characters. That being said, Howard is always the brunt of the jokes regarding his doctorate or lack thereof.
Even though Howard has a master’s degree in Engineering, getting his doctorate would have saved him years of torment and ridicule by the rest of the cast, most of all Sheldon.
BEST: Initially Making The Guidance System
Throughout season 10, Howard, as well as the rest of the gang, gets a call from Colonel Williams who asks them to work on a guidance system for the military. There are some initial hiccups, such as Sheldon promising they can make it in 2 months instead of two years.
Despite the hiccups at the beginning of the project, having worked on a military guidance system is a great thing to put on a resume.
WORST: Working On The Waste Disposal System
Also in ‘The Classified Materials Turbulence” Howard manages to mess up the design of the Pishkin-Wolowitz Waste Disposal System which will eject human waste into the space station after a certain number of flushes and recruits Leonard, Raj, and Sheldon to help him come up with a solution.
Even though getting one of his devices to go up into space is a great achievement, after it malfunctions and all the astronauts have to go outside for an unscheduled space-walk due to the floating waste, it would be safe to assume that Howard’s professional reputation would have taken a bit of a dive after this malfunction.
BEST: Going Into Space
In season 5 episode 24, “The Countdown Reflection”, Howard finally goes into space after a long journey of preparing and having to be persuaded to go.
Howard has worked on many space-related projects in the past such as his work on satellites and the water disposal system, but actually going into space is certainly a career topper for him and a feat that his season 1 self would be proud of.
WORST: Crashing The Mars Rover
In season 2 episode 8, ‘The Lizard-Spock Expansion’, fans find out that part of his job is navigating the Mars rover. Howard tries to impress his new girlfriend by showing her the Mars rover but ends up crashing it in a ditch.
Not only did Howard crash it, but it is also revealed that the footage captured during the crash that Howard ended up having to erase proved that there was life on Mars, a discovery that would have certainly put him on the map.