Definition and Nature of Work
Civil engineers specialize in road, bridge, buildings and water supply system design and construction. They supervise and direct construction teams and work with other engineers.
These professionals ensure that every structure built is environmentally compliant and can withstand earthquakes and hurricanes. This is especially true in places where these natural calamities often strike.
Civil engineers work wherever there is a need for expanding new structures or transportation systems and geotechnical engineering. They also hold administrative and supervisory positions.
A Day in the Life of a Civil Engineer
Civil engineers work in the oldest engineering discipline. This is among the most popular engineering areas of concentration with more than 262,800 professionals employed in the field as of 2010. They usually work in offices creating designs and structural plans. However, they are also needed to work at constructions sites.
This is especially true for those who handle projects that demand their presence at the site to monitor workers and troubleshoot.
Many civil engineers work abroad for larger construction projects. They may be employed full time for40 hours every week or more. However, they may also work on an as-needed or contractual basis. With this, they tend to work long hours to meet deadlines. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), about 48 percent of civil engineers work in engineering and architectural firms.
In addition, 13 percent are employed in state governments, and 11 percent work for local governments. About five percent hold positions with non-residential building construction firms and the federal government.