Virginia Structural Engineering – The Path Forward
Would you like to take your career in a new direction? If so, then becoming a structural engineer might be the perfect option for you. Structural engineers are responsible for designing buildings and other structures that can withstand heavy loads and extreme weather conditions. Becoming a structural engineer requires an education in civil engineering, including courses such as statics, dynamics, strength of materials, concrete design or steel design. This blog post outlines how to become a structural engineer in Virginia!
Degree Requirements to Become a Structural Engineer
Structural engineers need a degree in civil engineering and structural engineering. A degree in civil engineering includes courses such as statics, dynamics, strength of materials, concrete design or steel-design.
Why is this important? This type of education prepares students for designing buildings, bridges, roads, water systems etc. There’s no specific coursework requirement when it comes to obtaining your Master’s Degree- we recommend choosing one based on what interests you! You should major in something related to architecture or surveying if at all possible because these majors often
Bachelor’s degree in engineering and four years of work experience or Master’s degree with one year of work experience. An engineer must also be licensed by state, federal, and/or provincial governments to practice in the field. It will take time to become a structural engineer- for instance it could take five to seven years after undergraduate studies before you can apply for licensure as an Engineer Intern!
You’ll need practical experience from working as an intern at companies like Skanska USA Building Inc., Norfolk Southern Corporation, Dominion Energy Midstream Partners LP, Lendlease Americas Construction Group LLC, or AECOM.
But all those hard hours are worth it because this is what makes people happy – seeing buildings stay up without collapsing!
What kind of person should pursue this career path?
This profession attracts people from all sorts of backgrounds and cultures so anyone can technically succeed with enough dedication and hard
Needless to say…math is very important in this profession so take high school math courses seriously! You’ll need good communication skills too since much of your time is spent managing construction crews, talking with owners, and interacting with other building professionals.
Structural engineers must be intelligent problem solvers who are able to work well with people from different backgrounds and cultures. Previous experience working on a construction site or designing buildings would also help you land this position!
How long does it take to become a structural engineer?
The minimum requirement of four years experience before one can apply for a structural engineering position is on the shorter end when compared to other jobs. This means you could become an engineer in just a few short years if everything goes smoothly!
Most employers require at least four years of experience before they will hire someone for the role of structural engineer. After that there can be promotions within the company until eventually one becomes vice president over all operations. Some companies may promote straight into senior roles after five to six years while others will have their engineers spend more time learning and acquiring skills.
Cost to Become a Structural Engineer
Typically, there will be no costs required because many employers offer compensation packages with benefits that cover tuition and books in addition to salary. The more rigorous degree programs may require some sort of financial investment but most are subsidized by your employer or companies like State Farm who believe investing in future employees pays off handsomely!
You may be thinking “I don’t know how I’ll afford this.” The good news is that making an investment in yourself will pay off well into the future, whether it means going back to school or upgrading your skillset with new training programs like classes on CNC machining at Blackstone Valley Tech Center. The options are seemingly limitless.
Is it hard to become a structural engineer?
Becoming a structural engineer is not easy and requires the right set of skills, dedication, and commitment. It takes many years to get a degree in this field but the rewards are worth it with rewarding work that lets you make an impact on our built environment!
What are the general requirements to become a structural engineer?
In order to become a structural engineer , there are a few requirements you must meet. You need to have:
- -A Bachelor of Science degree in engineering or architecture from an ABET accredited university
- -Passed the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam which is offered by NCEES and administered through National Council of Examiners for Engineers & Surveyors (NCEES).
The FE Exam can be taken after graduation, but it’s best if you take it before graduation so that your academic transcripts will show completion!
If you’re interested in becoming a structural engineer, here are some questions we bet you want answered:
What do structural engineers do?
Structural engineers design buildings and other structures like bridges, towers, and roads. They also design the foundations for those structures. Structural engineers might have to supervise a construction project or work with other staff members like architects and landscape designers.
Structural engineers work with materials, such as concrete and steel. When something like a building or bridge needs to be designed, structural engineers measure the site’s weight capacity by calculating things like gravity load factors, wind speed etc., then they design structures that can support these loads. They also focus on balancing safety while considering aesthetics- important because people want beautiful buildings too! As you might imagine, this kind of job doesn’t just deal with bridges and buildings- it covers all kinds of infrastructure from roads to water system pipes!
What’s the difference between a structural engineer and a civil engineer?
A structural engineer is concerned with making sure the building’s framework and materials are sound, well-supported and sturdy. They work to make sure that buildings don’t collapse or break down due to natural disasters like earthquakes, heavy winds or other events such as fires.
An civil engineer on the other hand works more in construction projects – designing roads, bridges, tunnels and ports for example. The difference between a structural engineering position vs a civil engineering position can be summed up by considering their focus areas: while one puts an emphasis on structures (building), the other focuses mainly on infrastructure development. Civil engineers also deal with water resource management issues too! . A person might move from being strictly a civil engineer into structural if they want to.
What kind of salary do structural engineers earn?
The average annual wage for structural engineers is $92,000-$125,000 depending on your location and employer ($53 per hour). And if you’re an engineer in the top ten percent of earners, you can make more than $150,000 a year.
The demand for structural engineers is expected to increase by about 16% in the next ten years. That’s over 35,000 additional jobs added across North America!
One out of every four engineering jobs is in this field! There are 235,000 people employed as structural engineers across the US and Canada. They work for companies like Bechtel Group Inc., the Raytheon company, AECOM Technology Corporation, Fluor Corporation- among others.
What are some of the different types of Structural Engineering?
There are actually lots of specialized areas within this field: railroad bridges, building foundations and structures such as buildings or dams; mechanical systems like heating/air conditioning equipment and plumbing systems; steel construction projects including stadium roofing and cladding (coverings) on skyscrapers. Bottom line- there’s a job out there for you if that excites you enough to get your degree!
Colleges Offering Structural Engineering Degrees
In Virginia alone we can find 18 schools where students can earn a degree leading to a career as a structural engineer. Some of those include the following:
- Appalachian State University
- Regent University
- Old Dominion University
- Northern VA Community College
- Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
There are also plenty more nationwide.
Structural engineering is not easy work but it can be gratifying if done right!
Know the basics of structural engineering before getting started. You’ll find that there are plenty of career options available to you once you do, including going back to school and investing in yourself with new training programs.