Engineering careers

Jobs in engineering typically require an undergraduate degree with an engineering specialty at the very least. Increasingly, however, it is becoming an industry norm that applicants should be educated to graduate level. 

Studying a graduate degree is a good opportunity to specialize in environmental or civil engineering, if you have previously been studying a more general engineering subject. 

While you are studying, you should also be looking for any opportunity to spend some time in a professional working environment. Even if this experience is unpaid, it will make your application seriously competitive and you will learn invaluable skills and knowledge. 

Depending on where you study and where you intend to work, you will have to build up a certain amount of professional experience and demonstrate various accomplishments other than your degree in order to be classed as a professional engineer. 

For information relevant to each region, see the individual websites of the various accreditation boards

An environmental engineer could…


Examine current housing designs and create ways that they can be more energy efficient and cheaper to run, while benefitting the environment



Be a consultant on a big project like the London Olympic Park advising on their carbon footprint and environmental best practice



Design a water supply and wastewater treatment system to manage to the distribution of clean water in urban areas

How is the environmental engineering industry doing?

Environmental engineering is an industry that is experiencing steady growth, despite difficult economic times and harsh austerity measures across the board.

In 2011, the industry saw a growth of 5% on the previous year, making it worth $54.1 billion. 

While governments may be tightening their budgets, these figures show that the demand for environmental engineers is still there and unlikely to go away. 

Environmental issues have increasingly taken centre stage on the global agenda and this may be a key reason why the industry is weathering the storm. As environmental scientists and campaigners identify more and more ways in which human behaviour is impacting on the natural world, environmental engineers are being drafted in to help.

There has also been a rapid increase in demand in the private sector. Now more than ever, it is important to developers that they are doing things right and they are seen to be making efforts to do so.

Click here, for further information on the environmental engineering industry and the top 200 environmental engineering employers


Click here to return to the Civil and Environmental Engineering hub