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Civil Project Engineer: Job Duties, Salary and Outlook

Civil engineering requires significant formal education. Learn about the degree programs, job duties and licensure to see if this is the right career for you.

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Civil project engineering jobs require a bachelor's degree in a civil engineering, and some positions may require a master's degree. Civil project engineers are detail oriented and require good communication and research skills. The mean annual salary is about $88,000 for these professionals.

Essential Information

The construction of buildings, bridges, roads and other public places are designed and supervised by civil project engineers. State licensure is necessary to offer these services publicly, and this calls for education, experience and passing several examinations. A bachelor's degree in civil engineering is required, although a graduate education is recommended. Civil engineers need good communication skills in order to work with clients and with construction personnel. The job can be stressful, with tight deadlines and travel to distant job sites sometimes required.

Required Education Bachelor's degree in civil engineering
Licensing State licensing required to offer services publicly
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)* 8%
Mean Salary (2015)* $87,940

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

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Civil Project Engineer Job Duties

Many factors are considered when civil project engineers begin a new building project, starting with the needs of the employer. Then, blueprints are drawn up and studied by the civil project engineer. An estimation of the materials cost and the expected length of the project are determined. Once preliminary steps are completed, a civil project engineer directs and guides the building process. During this time a civil project engineer has to make sure government regulations are properly followed.

Deadlines are normal in this career and can bring additional pressure, stress and work hours. Regular travel is necessary with civil project engineers moving from offices to construction sites as necessary. In some cases, an employer can send a civil project engineer long distances or overseas to supervise a construction project.

Teaching and researching may become common job duties for experienced civil project engineers. For example, an employer might assign a new civil project engineer to be mentored under an experienced one. Businesses interested in new or cost effective building techniques can place a civil project engineer into a role of researching new building methods.

Civil Project Engineer Salary

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), civil engineers had a mean hourly wage of $42.28 in May 2015 (www.bls.gov), which amounted to a mean annual wage of $87,940. Civil engineers in the lowest-paid 10% had hourly wages of $25.43 or less (annual wages of $52,900 or less), while those in the top-paid 10% made an hourly wage of $62.43 or more (annual wages of $129,850 and up), as indicated by BLS figures from that same year.

BLS data shows the top-paying industry for civil engineering in 2015 was oil and gas extraction, which offered an annual mean wage of $130,750. Other top-paying industries at that time included accounting, tax preparation, bookkeeping and payroll services, and waste treatment and disposal.

Civil Project Engineer Job Outlook

The BLS reported that between 2014 and 2024, civil engineers could see as much as a 8% increase in employment. This growth is about average when compared to other careers. As the population continues to grow, civil project engineers will be needed to help expand and maintain water systems and waste treatment plants. In addition, existing structures will have to be periodically replaced or repaired.

Civil project engineers design and supervise the construction of buildings and other structures. Jobs in this field require a degree and licensing by the state. The outlook for jobs growth is about as fast as the national average.

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