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How Do I Become a Civil Supervisor?

Civil supervisors oversee all aspects of a civil engineering project.
Civil supervisors should have experience in civil engineering.
Civil supervisors needs to have a familiarity with local and regional rules and regulations regarding building projects.
Article Details
  • Written By: M. Kayo
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 24 September 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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To become a civil supervisor, you need to get a college degree and professional skills related to management. Civil supervisors also need to have more than just a broad familiarity with the local or regional rules and regulations regarding building projects. Managing the many members of a team made up of all different types of personnel, contractors, and other professionals is a big part of this position. Several years previous work experience in the field of civil engineering, particularly in a management or supervisory role, is helpful to those who want to become a civil supervisor.

The educational requirements needed to become a civil supervisor include a bachelor's degree in civil engineering. You may want to choose coursework that is most applicable to the type of civil engineering in which you may be working. For example, if you are going to be building highways, roads, and bridges, then you may want to concentrate your courses in mechanical or structural engineering. If you are likely to be in an industry that designs and constructs power grids, then you should take additional courses in electrical engineering. Most colleges and universities offer courses and degrees that allow you to specialize in certain areas of civil engineering, so check out all the specific details for a school's course offerings before enrolling.

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In order to become a civil supervisor, you will also need to have a working knowledge of all relevant standards, codes, and regulations for specific areas. Civil engineers design and build and the types of things they build are almost always regulated or controlled by some official government authority or the company or organization handling the project. Everything from the initial land survey all the way through to the finishing day is likely to be overseen or regulated by the agents of those authorities.

Managing sub-contractors, vendors, and other personnel will be an important job function for those who want to become a civil supervisor. Engineers or civil supervisors usually specialize in just one area of engineering, so the need to work with other types of engineers is a critical function of this job. Collaboration with these team members who may specialize in electrical, mechanical, or any other type of engineering is essential to make sure that all work is completed on time, within budget, according to regulations, and under the safest conditions. Preparing cost estimates, interpreting contracts, and coordinating various work schedules are also vital management skills necessary for the execution of the duties of a civil supervisor.

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