Nebraska is one of the Great Plains states and is nicknamed the Cornhusker State. Nebraska has been a well-traveled state for centuries, with many Native American nations and European travelers crossing through what is now Nebraska.
As a plains state, the geography of the state is mostly flat, though there are many parts of the state, particularly in the eastern part of the state, where glaciers from the last Ice Age helped carve out peaks, mountains, and large hills. Agriculture remains one of the strongest economic sectors from Nebraska due to the vast farmland in the state.
Engineering Education in Nebraska
Despite the strong agricultural industry, engineering remains a fruitful sector for education and job opportunities in Nebraska. There are six community colleges in Nebraska, like Western Nebraska Community College and Northeast Community College, that offer certificate and associate’s programs.
Chadron State College, in the northwest corner of the state, and Wayne State College, in the northeast corner of the state, are the two state colleges with baccalaureate programs in engineering. The University of Nebraska, located in the state capital of Lincoln, is the public research university of Nebraska, offering bachelor’s and graduate degrees in engineering.
Outlook for Engineering Jobs in Nebraska
Engineering jobs, nationally, should rebound since the recession, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The BLS reports that between 2010 and 2020, all engineering sectors should see growth by 10%.
Total engineering jobs, which are calculated with architectural jobs by the BLS, totaled 10,830 jobs in May 2011. The Western Nebraska nonmetropolitan area ranked with the least amount of total engineering jobs in Nebraska, with only 430 jobs. In contrast, the Lincoln metropolitan region and the Omaha-Council Bluffs region reported the highest employment of engineers.
A total of 2,590 engineers work in the Lincoln area, while 5,690 work in the Omaha-Council Bluffs region. The Omaha-Council Bluffs region consists of Omaha suburbs that are in the state of Iowa. Surprisingly, the strong agricultural industry in Nebraska did not yield high levels of agricultural engineering jobs in the state.
The strongest engineering sector in Nebraska is the civil engineering sector, with a reported 1,530 civil engineers employed in the state as of May 2011. The other top sectors include electrical engineering, industrial engineering, and mechanical engineering, with each sector reporting over 700 employed workers in the state.