Roller Coaster Designer

Make rollercoasters that are safe, fun, and thrilling.

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$33,000 – $94,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Roller Coaster Designers do?

This is a job that involves stomach-dropping thrills and nerve-wracking twists, and calls for you to take the lives of others into your hands on a daily basis. You’re not a Surgeon, though, or even an Investment Banker. You’re a Roller Coaster Designer!

This job mixes fun with safety. Though the Roller Coaster Designer always wants to push the envelope and leave people screaming (with joy), they also want to make sure you get them down that 100-foot drop or double upside down loop safely.

Things to think of when making a safe roller coaster include how much weight the cars and rails can support, how fast it can go, and when a twist becomes too extreme. Since there’s so much science (physics specifically) that goes into figuring out these important pieces, many Roller Coaster Designers tend to have engineering backgrounds. The other option is to be a Designer who creates the overall look and plan for the coaster.

Each roller coaster starts with an amusement park commission. You work with other Designers and Engineers to create a general plan.

Will the ride have water? Will it drop straight down? Will people sit in cars or twist in harnesses? You let the general landscape, the budget of the park, and the number of people expected to ride at any one time help in your design decision making.

After you, the Roller Coaster Designer create your idea, it gets sent back to the park to be okayed. When you get the green light, the coaster moves into production and then, finally, assembly. After everything is said and done and the coaster is finally in place, you get to claim the best perk of this job: a free ride on your creation.

Should I be a Roller Coaster Designer?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Persistent: You keep pushing through, even when faced with tough obstacles.
  • Independent: You enjoy flying solo and doing things your own way.
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.

  • How to become a Roller Coaster Designer

    Most Roller Coaster Designers have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:abwd9d&chl=|no+college+%281%25%29|certificate+%2819%25%29|associate%27s+%2825%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2852%25%29|master%27s+%283%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,52
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