Civil EngineerCivil Engineers salary statistic

Salary Range: $52.3k- $138k

Average Salary of Jobs with Related Title
Salary Range, $
Architects, Surveyors, and Cartographers
Architects, Except Naval
Architects, Building
Architects, Except Landscape and Naval
Architects, Structural
Building Architects
Building Architectural Designers
Designers, Building Architectural
Structural Architects
Architects, Golf Course
Salary Range: $52.3k - $138k


In the physical and naturally built environment, the civil engineers hand is seen throughout the world. This profession dates back centuries and is responsible for the design of buildings, dams, tunnels, airports, universities, hospitals and just about everything we lay our eyes on that requires a foundation. This career is high on the list of lucrative careers to strive for.

Not only are civil engineers engaged in the overall completion and design of buildings, but they also design and build systems such as water supply and sewage treatment facilities. This has them engaged in scientific technology that helps these types of industries remain up to date and functioning properly.

The architect may design the buildings on paper but the civil engineer is the one that is going to make it structurally sound as it goes up. They will often have to work hand in hand as a team. Civil engineers will meet with surveyors and architects in the early processes of a new build to test grounds for a new site, and remain until it is done.

We, as laymen, may go day to day without ever knowing if the ground we are walking on was chosen because it was good for asphalt or gravel. This is the job of the civil engineer.

As with other engineering careers, civil engineering offers multi-level inclusion into several specialties, for instance:

  • Architectural
  • Transportation
  • Traffic
  • Water resources
  • Environmental engineering
  • Teaching at the University level
  • Administrative and board advisory
  • Politics. Civil engineers are often the voice of reason to make sure that our government officials remain ethical when considering the building of infrastructure, which needs to be cost effective.


Civil engineers are there from the start of every project and must oversee it till the end. Meeting with developers and breaking down to them the cost before the project starts, and projected outcomes and time of completion. Some of the responsibilities they face are:

  1. Surveying reports and maps of the area of the construction
  2. Travel many times throughout the year
  3. Outside exposure to sun and cold
  4. Keeping costs down while quality of the build and labor high
  5. Keeping educated on government regulations and city ordinances
  6. Knowing environmental hazards
  7. Perform experiments such as soil tests, water tests (foundational analysis)
  8. Being financial and computer literate at many levels to be cost competitive when it comes to labor and equipment

The job duties will vary from discipline to discipline. Some positions may be in office and some may be outside. You may have to travel, or if you have a government position you may be stable in your location. The hours can also vary depending on the project and who you are working for. Someone in a government office can always depend on the same hours of operation but others that work in the private sector may find themselves working odd hours at any given time.


At the entry level, this career requires a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering, but this is the level that will be used for the basic duties on a job site. A Master of Science degree will show an employer that you have more than the basic skill and the critical thinking that it takes to run a project, although both degrees are employable and needed at the construction sites.

If you are presently studying for this career, consider completing the MS degree. One in five civil engineers in the U.S. are at the masters level. It is highly recommended that those seeking this career join study groups and seek out internships for on-site experience. Internships normally lead to applications that are pulled to the top of the pile.


Civil engineer salary ranges begin with a median of $80,000. As mentioned in our education section, this specialty depends on the degree of study you have accumulated. The highest earners are in the gas and oil extraction industries with Midland, TX; Santa Barbara, CA and Anchorage, Alaska leading the cities with the highest paid positions in the United States.

The lowest reported earning was $52,000 in 2015.