Civil Engineer Employment – About Civil Engineering and How to Qualify

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Civil engineer employment involves designing and supervision in the construction and maintenance of buildings, bridges, dams, airports, tunnels, sewage and water supply. Civil engineers need to consider many factors when designing including construction cost, government regulations, and probability of earthquakes and other natural calamities in the area.

Civil engineering encompasses many specialties which include:
1. Coastal Engineers – manage coastal areas and find ways to defend it against water erosion and flooding.
2. Construction Engineers – plan and execute designs from environmental, development, geotechnical, hydraulic and structural engineers. They draft and review contracts, evaluate logistical operations, and monitor the cost of necessary materials.

3. Earthquake Engineers – evaluate how structures interact with shaky ground and foresee the effects if earthquakes occurred. They design, construct and maintain structures that comply with building standards that help structures withstand earthquake exposure.
4. Environmental Engineers – deal with treatment and disposal of biological, chemical and thermal waste, the purification of air and water and the cleaning of contaminated areas due to accidental contamination or wrong waste disposal practices. They also assist policy makers by gathering information on the possible impact to the environment of project proposals. Environmental engineers are also referred to as environmental health, public health or sanitary engineers.
5. Geotechnical Engineers – concern themselves with the condition and composition of the rock and soil on which civil engineering structures are going to be built on.
6. Materials Engineers – they deal with ceramics, metals and polymers and experiment with mixtures to find the strongest or most ideal materials to be used in construction projects.
7. Structural Engineers – they are concerned with structural design and analysis of bridges, buildings, flyovers, tunnels oil and gas fields. They identify the loads acting upon a structure and the resulting stress and forces arising within the structure and apply their findings in designing the structure so it can have the necessary strength to support or resist the load.
8. Transport Engineers – concerned with movement of people and goods safely and efficiently. They design, construct, maintain and specify infrastructures used in transportation including airports, canals, highways, railroads, and seaports.
9. Urban Engineers – involved with designing, constructing, maintaining and specifying municipal structures such as streets, street lighting, sidewalks, sewers, municipal waste management structures, parks and water supply networks.
10. Water Resource Engineers – otherwise known as hydraulic engineers, they are concerned with the management and collection of water as a natural resource.

To qualify for civil engineer jobs you must have a bachelor’s degree major in civil engineering which takes 3 to 5 years to complete. The course covers subjects in math, physics, project management and design, and subjects specific to civil engineering. In the early stages, all or most of the specialties are covered. Later, students chose an area of specialization. After completing a bachelor’s degree program the student has to get some work experience through internship programs and then pass a board examination to be certified as a professional civil engineer. In the U.S. a certified engineer’s title is professional engineer. The advantages of being certified vary according to geographical location and all certifying bodies have a code of ethics which all members must follow or in cases not covered by certification, civil engineers are subject to contract laws.

Employment outlook for civil engineer employment is very good with growth expected at 24 percent which is much faster than the average for all occupations for the period 2008 to 2018. This is mostly due to the general growth of the population and the resulting need to build new and improve existing infrastructure and in addition to new jobs resulting from this growth many job openings will be available because many civil engineers are retiring and will need replacement. Of all engineering professionals civil engineers are the most numerous because of the growing need to repair or replace old bridges, roads and other public structures. It is advisable to take up post graduate education to maintain your value to your employer and knowledge of new technological advancements. This could also increase chances of being promoted. As of 2008 the median annual wage for civil engineers was $74,600.

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