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Teamwork and communication are as important to this civil engineer as are math and science. While a solid foundation in math and science is required for civil engineers, getting along with co-workers and being able to speak and write well are very important too. But that's one thing about the engineering field -- some positions allow a lot of interaction with people, and yet other positions are suited to personalities who prefer a more isolated work environment.

Every time we drive on an interstate highway we see the products of a civil engineer. Barb has worked on projects that involve the lengthening of on/off ramps, extending overpasses to meet federal guidelines that accommodate today's taller trucks, resurfacing existing highways, building large culverts and changing highway signs.

Barb says some aspects of the engineering field require long hours and the ability to meet deadlines and remain within budgets which can be stressful. Those are some of the negatives encountered by civil engineers, but there are plenty of positives. Civil engineers enjoy lots of flexibility. They might work outside or inside or a combination of both. They can be creative when designing projects, but they also spend time writing reports. Some days are spent at a desk with a computer; others are spent at a construction site.

Barb says civil engineering is a great career for females, but they are underrepresented in the field. In her college classes males outnumbered females, and that is reflected in the job market.

If engineering sounds like a possible career choice, take a closer look at what it'll take to begin the journey.

Next: The Civil Engineer's Profile.


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