The Great Pyramid of Giza is the only one of the seven wonders of the ancient world still standing. It has sustained the test of time and mother nature’s fury over the years. Have you ever asked yourself how did the Egyptians, working over forty-five hundred years ago, ever manage to build it? Who “engineered” this massive project? Yes, you’ve guessed it right. Civil Engineers along with Architects built these massive structures. Civil Engineers design, plan, and run large building projects, like bridges, buildings, roads, dams, and water-supply systems. As one of the oldest engineering disciplines, Civil Engineering is responsible for building our civilization. This article will explain in detail what Civil Engineers do, how much they typically earn and how you can become a Civil Engineer.
WHAT DOES A CIVIL ENGINEER DO?
To understand what a Civil Engineer does, we first categorize them according to the work they do:
- Design / Structural Engineers – They check the feasibility of any future construction (Buildings / Bridges /
Roads). They conduct the load analysis of buildings and suggest the materials to make them more durable.
- Construction / Execution Engineers – These Engineers oversee whole projects and are end to end
responsible for all the work ongoing at a construction site. They are responsible for timely completion of the
- Quality Assurance Engineers – These Engineers are the vigilant eyes in a project and are responsible for the
best quality output in terms of aesthetics or the material used or the best practices to execute any activity in a project.To get a fair idea of the things a Civil Engineer does, have a look at the table below:
|Example problem from your day-to-day life||Solution given by Civil Engineer|
|A new bridge is coming up in your town and your grandfather is worried that it won’t be able to withstand the storm during rainy seasons||Using the initial sketch given by the architect, Structural / Design Engineers estimate how thick the foundation pillars should be in the bridge, what material should be used and how the arch should be designed to withstand the strong wind.|
Your father is building a new home and your father wants to understand how much time and money it will require
|Civil Engineers estimate cost and time required for constructing your new home. They do it by understanding specific requirements for your home, whether it requires any special protection against harsh weather, how easily the raw materials are available in your area etc.|
|Train service has been suspended between your hometown and your uncle’s city because of a crack in the tunnel connecting the two cities. Your tickets to visit them on Holi has already been booked.||Civil Engineers study the blueprint / sketch of the design of the tunnel, conduct a survey inside the tunnel to identify root cause of the crack, recommend solution based on time and cost available, and on approval, execute as well.|
|Your elder sister is frustrated because she has to spend one hour each day stuck in traffic while returning from office each day.||Civil Engineers study which roads are the most congested during rush hours, how traffic can be reduced by diversions like roundabouts and deciding where a new over bridge should be built.|
|In its last meeting, all members of the colony realised that they need to find a way to solve the water scarcity problem during summers.||Civil Engineers design water treatment plants for townships, factory or the whole city. They investigate environmental impact of the plant on the neighborhood, ensure that the design complies with government standards for such plants and supervise construction and maintenance of the plants when required.|
TOP GLOBAL COMPANIES WHICH HIRE CIVIL ENGINEERS
KEY QUALITIES REQUIRED
In Civil Engineering, companies check skill competencies in candidates according to the sector the company is in. So based on the different kinds of Company profile, companies typically look for:
- Design / Structural Engineers: The candidates need to be extremely technically sound with the principles of structural design.
- Construction Engineers: The candidates need to be technically well versed and should possess good communication skills. They should be able to get across clear concise instructions to a nontechnical person accurately. In addition to this, they should also be a team player.
- Quality Assurance Engineers: These candidates should again be technically sound and well versed with all the lab and field tests of all the materials used on site. They should be extremely rigorous with the standard codes and guidelines.
FAMOUS CIVIL ENGINEERS
HOW TO BECOME A CIVIL ENGINEER?
Step 1:Choose Science with Mathematics after class 10th (PCM) and prepare for different Entrance Exams.
Engineering colleges which offer courses in Civil Engineering in India admit students on the basis of competitive entrance exams – JEE Mains, JEE Advanced, BITSAT, MHT CET, ComedK as of February 2017. Currently, score in JEE Mains is also used by many States, (e.g., Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh etc) for admission to government and private engineering colleges at the state level.
Step 2 : Take admission in Civil Engineering or related Engineering disciplines.
Please see the chart given below for trend in cutoff for Civil Engineering at top government engineering colleges in India which admit students on the basis of JEE mains and JEE Advanced.
EXPLORE THE FIELD
|Watch what Civil Engineers do in this YouTube video from “American Society of Civil Engineers”||Read what you can do a degree in Civil Engineering||Do this interactive activity on PBS Learning Media to identify the best type of bridge for 4 different locations||Explore future scope in Infrastructure sector, one of the biggest employers of Civil Engineers in India|