Considered as the oldest field of engineering, civil engineering involves improving and maintaining the built and natural environments to enhance the quality of life for present and future generations. Civil engineers provide the society with vital infrastructure and lifeline systems such as cities, roads, buildings, bridges, railroads, water systems, etc., as well as they protect the society from extreme forces of nature such as high winds, earthquakes, and floods. With a sound grasp of science, math and technology, a civil engineer designs, creates and builds structures efficiently, making best use of available resources and techniques. If you are serious about your education then start your research today and find a civil engineering school in your area.
If you are interested in using your math and science skills in a productive way to help create a safer, more efficient and more desirable habitat for the society, you should consider being a civil engineer. But what does it take to be a civil engineer? Foremost, you have to enjoy the challenge of solving problems; be part of the solution and enjoy working with people as part of a team. Next, you need to have a college degree for almost all beginning engineering jobs. College graduate with a degree in science or math may get some jobs; but if you want to offer your services directly to the public, you need to get a license from the State. A license requires 4 years of relevant work experience and passing the licensure exam.
Students may get a certificate in civil engineering, an associate’s degree, a bachelor’s degree or a higher degree. Undergraduate degrees in civil engineering will give students the basic ideas in project management and design as well as supplementary courses in areas such as mathematics and physics. Each specific field of civil engineering will usually be touched upon briefly. If a student chooses to pursue a higher degree in civil engineering, he would take more courses on his specific field of discipline. Civil engineers plan, design, and supervise the construction of, operate, maintain, inspect, and manage many of the physical facilities and systems in both public and private sectors. They do careful calculations to determine the optimum dimensions of such facilities and systems, together with detailed drawings with written specifications to ensure that the projects are constructed according to appropriate quality and standard requirements, and that the costs involved are reasonable. Civil engineers usually at construction sites; sometimes, they work in places that are far away from cities, involving travel.
After graduation, a career in civil engineering involves working for consulting firms or government agencies, energy industry, utility agencies and various other industries. Some might join the military or work for manufacturers. At the start, they work on design, but generally, as they gain more experience and responsibility, they manage projects and do little engineering design. Your career path depends on your level of experience and the sub discipline of civil engineering you chose to pursue. Whatever field of civil engineering you choose, you can expect an average salary of $68,600 to $100,000 a year.
As a civil engineer, you have the opportunity to work with the general public to a much greater degree than any other type of engineer. If you want to work on teams with colleagues from a variety of disciplines, then be a civil engineer and work on complex technical challenges faced by society today.