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Who hasn’t heard of Dubai, a Persian Gulf city famed for innovative, modern architecture and massive infrastructure projects. Think Burj Khalifa, the tallest man-made structure on the planet, and you’re half-way there. This city of around 2 million people is without doubt the jewel in the crown of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), a country built up almost from scratch on the back of huge oil and gas reserves. How many students currently studying a civil engineering degree course were at least partly inspired by Dubai’s iconic skyline? No way of really knowing, of course, but a fair number would surely be an acceptable answer.
The UAE is a forward looking country by any measure with Dubai and its other cities, such as the capital Abu Dhabi and the third-largest city Sharjah, earning justifiable reputations as investor hotspots. The education system is also recognised throughout the Gulf region and further afield not only for its excellence, but for offering university degrees and training which the business sector finds particularly useful and appealing. indeed, the many colleges and universities in Dubai and the UAE’s other cities have been, and continue to be, at the forefront of highly targeted educational delivery.
For example, the American University of Sharjah (AUS) offers a civil engineering degree course which compares extremely favourably with those offered by the very best universities in the United States or Europe. In fact, the 140-credit Bachelor of science program is accredited both by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET in the United States and by the UAE Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research.
For those unaware, ABET is a non-profit, non-governmental organization that accredits college and university programs in the disciplines of applied science, computing, engineering, and engineering technology. More than 3,100 programs at more than 670 colleges and universities in 24 countries have been accredited so far, principally through the use of a voluntary peer review
So what can you expect to learn over the four years of a BSc in civil engineering, whether the one offered at AUS or at other UAE universities? The answer is a lot. However, gone are the days of the Victorian civil engineering superstar Isambard Kingdom Brunel, who could take an idea and literally turn it into reality single-handedly. Nowadays, learning to function as part of a multidisciplinary team is a vital requirement of the modern-day civil engineer.
You’ll also learn many of the other facets and disciplines involved in civil engineering, too, from structural engineering, environmental engineering and transportation engineering to construction materials, water resources and construction management. AUS places considerable emphasis on group-based, open-ended design projects and motivates students to keep informed of current technical developments and environmental and global issues. Students are also encouraged to improve communication skills, use computer tools and to develop high standards of ethics.
AUS says, “With governments throughout the region eager to develop and enhance their infrastructure and the construction industry playing a significant role in that development, our region has seen an increased demand for civil engineers. As a result, many of our graduates get multiple job offers upon graduation.”
In other words, a first class civil engineering degree course with the strong possibility of solid job offers at the end of it. So what are you waiting for? Find out more about the role of the civil engineer here.
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Good luck in your search.