A civil engineer is specially trained to design
structures. The responsibilities of a civil engineer are to help build
and also design strong, safe structures that people can use. They
conduct tests to make sure structures are safe. The yearly earnings of
a civil engineer are from $40,000 to $80,000. The average is about
$50,000. The work schedule is Monday-Friday. Sometimes they will have
to work on weekends. Civil engineers will work wherever they are needed.
The future of civil engineering is probably going to be good,
because society will need more civil engineers, and more projects will
be built. There will probably be a lot of new major projects going on.
It could be bad because the government might cut back on funding and
there won’t be enough work for civil engineers.
Throughout history engineers built a lot of big projects and
landmarks. Engineering has been around longer than five thousand
years. When civil engineering started, teachers helped train
The personal skills required are self-discipline and safety
consciousness. They have to get along with other people, and work well
under pressure. They need an eye for detail, good listening skills, and
good English skills.
The physical requirements are to be fit, healthy, and have good
The education required is mostly gathered in high school and college.
If you don’t get at least a Bachelors degree in college you can’t be a
The tools civil engineers use are computers, cameras, building, and
materials measuring devices, and other things like that. Their most
helpful tools are computers. They are helpful because in the old times
people would write everything they needed to remember on pieces of
paper. The other important tool is their own brain.
Civil engineers don’t do everything by themselves though. They often
work with architects and other types of engineers. They take the
architect’s designs for a building with elevators and other details and
try to build it. If architectural designs are not safe, civil engineers
are supposed to discover and fix the problems. Other engineers help by
working in specific areas that are their specialties and the basic work
of their job. Civil engineers will also manage building sites if they
There are many types of engineers. Specialties include nuclear,
transportation, electric, mechanical, hydraulic, geotechnical,
environmental, and construction.
Interviewed and What I Learned
In the afternoon on 12-14-05, I interviewed Charles.
Charles is a civil engineer. I interviewed him because I thought it
would be a good idea. I wondered what the future might be like; the
future for civil engineering could be good or bad depending on economy
and the government. The problems in the field might be there are not
enough civil engineers. Civil engineers have a lot of major
projects going on. I learned that there is more than one type of civil
engineer. I asked Charles what are the basic earnings of a typical
engineer. The basic earnings are around $50,000. I learned civil
engineers use a lot of tools like computers and calculators. Another
thing I learned is that architects are different because architects
primarily focus on the look of a structure
On the same day I interviewed Eduardo Lopez about civil engineering. I
learned civil engineering used to be called military engineering. There
have been a lot of important people in the history of civil
engineering. I also learned that Romans were the first to build sewage
systems for their cities.
I also interviewed Wendy Christianson on the same day. She told me in
college you need a 4 year degree to be a civil engineer.
Christianson, Wendy. Personal interview. December 14, 2005.
“Civil Engineers.” Carrier Encyclopedia. 2000. pp.66.
“Civil Engineers.” Labor Market Information. December
2005 <www.civil engineers.com>
Cosgrove, Holly. “Civil Engineers” Career Discovery
Encyclopedia. Ferguson, 2000. pp. 2.
Joel, David. Careers in Focus. Ferguson Publishing,
2003. pp. 38-46.
Lopez, Eduardo. Personal interview. December 14, 2005.
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