A construction engineer is involved in the building of a variety of different structures, bridges, roads and dams. To become a construction project engineer, one usually needs a bachelor’s degree in engineering or a related field of science. It can also be useful to have gained some work experience in the building industry.
If one wants to become a construction project engineer, he or she needs to possess fundamental knowledge of building design, mathematics, physics and planning. Someone in this position may be required to use these skills for a number of different tasks. Often, he will inspect construction sites before the project begins and try to minimize safety risks. He may also be responsible for keeping the project on budget and insuring that workers are following plans.
Construction project engineers often have a variety of other responsibilities. These can include organizing workers, deciding how to spend the budget, scheduling the project and maintaining standards of quality. An engineer that works for a construction company may be assigned to several different projects at once, or may work on multiple tasks on a single construction site. The nature of the work generally requires construction project engineers to be physically present at the job site and to communicate with the workers.
Many people who want to become a construction project engineer, begin preparing while still in high school. Good grades in math and science classes can give someone an advantage when pursuing a higher education in this field. College programs in construction engineering can be difficult to get into, and every school has its own requirements. A degree in general engineering, which includes classes dedicated specifically to construction engineering, is a common route to work in this field, but some people choose to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in physics.
Some work experience at building sites is very helpful for anyone wishing to become a construction project engineer. Summer internships are sometimes available for students who want to start exploring the trade. Students can gain practical knowledge of all the elements that make up a construction project.
Most construction engineers begin their careers as engineers in-training, which can help individuals to learn on the job. Such trainees usually start as an assistant to a project manager or field engineer, and are often given more responsibilities as management and organizational skills are gained. Once he has proven his abilities, a trainee is typically promoted to lead engineer and assigned his own projects.