How Much Does a Civil Engineer Make?

Engineers are responsible for applying the principles of science and mathematics to create items used in daily life. Civil Engineers design things such as buildings, homes, roads, tunnels, dams, airports, bridges, and water and sewer systems. When designing these structures and systems, Civil Engineers must consider factors such as cost of materials, expected lifespan of the finished product, and government regulations for safety. Many Engineers specialize in specific areas—such as structural, water resources, construction, or transportation—which often leads to supervisory and educational roles.

What is the average salary of a Civil Engineer?

As of May 2010, the average salary of a Civil Engineer was $77,560 annually, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The lowest-paid 10 percent of Civil Engineers receive less than $50,560 while the highest-paid 10 percent earn more than $119,320 per year. Given these figures, you have a 75 percent chance of earning between $61,590 and $97,990 per year. Those are pretty good odds of making significantly more than $50,000 per year.

The salary range varies greatly based on several factors, such as the location and type of employment. For example, Civil Engineers employed in the commercial and industrial machinery and equipment repair field top the pay scale at $133,830 per year, while working for a state government agency as a Civil Engineer pays only $76,530 annually. Civil Engineers working in California earn an average of $94,970 annually (California is the top-paying state), while those employed in Montana can expect an average of $65,370 per year.

What is the job outlook for Civil Engineers?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the number of Civil Engineer positions to grow by as much as 24 percent through 2018. This growth projection is much faster than average when compared to all other occupations, and is attributed to population growth and aging infrastructure.

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