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What Does it Take to Become a Civil Engineer?

Civil engineering is about constructing, adapting and maintaining infrastructures that people depend on every day—railways, roads, bridges, flood defences, waste networks and water supply. Civil engineers have to ensure that these infrastructures are functioning efficiently to meet the challenges in climate change, population growth and natural disasters.

A civil engineer designs, constructs and supervises construction projects such as airports, buildings, residential houses, bridges, roads and tunnels. The job entails analyzing survey reports, costs, environmental hazards and government regulations; submitting permit applications to state and federal agencies; testing building materials; providing cost estimates; and managing repair, maintenance or replacement of infrastructure.

Becoming a Civil Engineer

So, what does it take to get civil engineering jobs?

A civil engineer should be able to demonstrate technical ability in structural design and development, environmental factors and many others. However, before you can become a civil engineer, you will have to go through years of university education with a degree in engineering and a major in civil engineering. Education focuses on English, Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics. These subjects are often made as prerequisites depending on the university.

Civil engineering students are eligible to join “Engineers Australia” while still completing their university degree. Upon graduation, they become eligible to apply for a graduate membership and are no longer required to take further examination.

Most of the graduates of civil engineering join a graduate programme with a firm and just work their way up the ladder. While promotion varies from one company to another, it pays to start early. Many universities offer opportunities to work in the industry, which eventually leads to a graduate role.

Some students, on the other hand, pursue with a vocational course. This can initially be your route to your civil engineering career, after which you may proceed with a degree in civil engineering.

Getting a Job

Before anything else, have your resume and cover letter ready. Make sure to highlight your skills, education and abilities in relation to engineering. Include certifications, internships and skills on computer software such as CAD.

Prepare for employment assessments such as aptitude testing to confirm your knowledge and skills in civil engineering. This helps companies narrow down the list of qualified applicants.

Sign up with an agency who can offer you employment. Attend as many civil engineering related events to be able to network with as many people as possible.

Look for job openings through different sources such as Internet job boards. This gives you the opportunity to look for a job in your local area and even nationwide by just using keywords such as “civil engineer jobs”. In just a matter of seconds, these websites can narrow down a number of job posts that match your criteria. Civil Engineers can hold an administrative or supervisory positions. Other related jobs include design, research and teaching.

If searching online does not work for you, look for companies near your area. Even if the company does not say that they are hiring, just send a resume because a job opening might just become available.

We are always eager to hear from our readers. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or suggestions regarding CareerAlley content.

Good luck in your search,

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