Civil Engineer Career Field

Career Overview

Civil Engineers are responsible for designing and managing the building of infrastructure projects like roads, buildings, airports, neighborhood developments, damns, bridges, water supply systems, and also sewage systems. Many factors must be considered during design work of complicated structures and infrastructure systems like costs, expected lifetime of structure, government regulations, environmental impacts, environmental hazards like storms and earthquakes, and other factors. There are many specialty areas in the field of civil engineering that engineers may specialize in including structural, water resources, construction, transportation, and geotechnical engineering. Civil engineers may be supervisors or administrators. They may also work in research, teaching, and construction positions.

Education Requirements

Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineer or Similar Field

Entry level positions in civil engineering require a bachelor’s degree in the civil engineering field or a similar field. Sometimes, graduates with a degree in mathematics or the natural sciences may qualify for entry level positions in this and other engineering fields. Some management positions do require a master’s degree in the civil engineering field.


Structural Engineering
Environmental Impacts & Engineering

Licensing Requirements

Engineers who offer services to the public must be licensed in the state they work in. This is required by law. Engineers who are licensed to work for the public are called PE’s or Professional Engineers. To obtain this license, engineers must obtain a 4 year degree in engineers from an accredited program, have 4 years of relevant work experience, and complete a state examination. Most states have continuing education requirements for these licenses to remain active.

School Recommendations

Carnegie Mellon University
Stanford University
University of Illinois
Georgia Institute of Technology

Employment Trends

Job Availability as of May 2008: 278,400
Projected Employment in 2018: 345,900
Average Annual Salary for Civil Engineers in 2008: $74,600

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Article Reference: Bureau of Labor Statistics










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