Girls in Science & Technology: Civil Engineer

Civil engineers design and supervise the creation of structures. Not just buildings -- civil engineers work on everything from tunnels and dams to highways and airports to water and sewer systems. They use computer technologies and advanced materials to design structures that meet the needs of a growing population while protecting the environment, reducing the dangers of natural phenomena like storms and considering future needs of the community.


  • Build skyscrapers, bridges or tunnels. Design structural supports for human colonies in space or on the moon.
  • Construct dams or flood-control structures to create wetlands or recreation areas.
  • Plan and supervise the development of new roads, railways or airports.
  • Demolish old buildings by implosion (plant and detonate explosives in such a way that the structure falls into itself).

A four-year college degree is required for most civil engineering jobs. Many civil engineers specialize in structural, hydraulic, water resource, environmental, transportation or management positions and will seek engineering degrees specific to those fields.

Work Environment
Anywhere people build things, you can find civil engineers. Some work in offices, and others on construction sites. Depending on the project, civil engineers can work regular business hours or longer.

Starting Salaries
$36,100 with a bachelor's degree
$42,300 with a master's degree

For More Information
American Society of Civil Engineers

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