CAREERSONLINE IT DEGREEONLINE COLLEGE DEGREESCOLLEGESJOBSARTICLES

Environmental Engineer


How to Become an Environmental Engineer
Environmental Engineer Job Description
Skills and Qualities to Become an Environmental Engineer
Environmental Engineer Salaries
Influential Environmental Engineers
Leading Environmental Engineer Organizations
Top Cities for Environmental Engineering Jobs
Other Careers of Interest

How to become an Environmental Engineer

For an entry level engineering position, an environmental engineering undergraduate degree is usually required. Sometimes, an applicant with a natural sciences or mathematics degree may get an entry level job, but that is not nearly as common. The curriculum for engineers at colleges and universities tends to be a highly regimented one with requirements not only for what courses must be taken, but what sequence they must be taken in and in specific combinations. The curriculum emphasis is on math, the specific engineer field and other hard sciences. Students often take an extra year to complete their degrees due to the rigor of the programs, and like other engineering programs, there are always a few areas that pose consistent and high levels of difficulty for students. Environmental engineering programs tend to emphasize a more diverse range of disciplines vs. other older areas of engineering. Courses involve focus on things like agriculture, ecology, geology, and public health in addition to the other core sciences, mathematics and engineering courses.

Although a person could become a part of an environmental engineering firm or work in a corporate department and be considered an environmental engineer in general, the formal engineering designation is Professional Engineer (PE), which means that one is licensed by a particular state to offer their services directly to the public. In other words, the role of an environmental engineer is broad, but the title of "engineer" is specific. To become a PE, there are a number of requirements, including graduating with an undergraduate degree from a specially program accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), four years of experience, and an exam. There are two stages of becoming a PE, each categorized by passing exams. Upon completion of the first exam, (Fundamentals of Engineering), the PE candidate is called an "engineer in training" or "engineer intern". The second exam (Principles and Practice of Engineering) is usually only able to be taken after some years of work experience. Site licensing varies and some states require continuing education while others do not. Independent from state and other governmental regulators, there are other professional organizations that offer certification in special areas of engineering, like environmental engineering.

In addition, because environmental engineers are dealing with inhabited environments and industry, some environmental engineers also obtain a law degree to help them navigate environmental law more easily.

What does an Environmental Engineer do?

Although the tile of "engineer" can seem to be quite technical and specific, there are many areas of engineering; some of these areas are very different and some of them overlap quite a bit.

Environmental engineering can be considered as a subdivision of the broader "civil engineering" category, one of the oldest types of engineering. Environmental engineers work with applied life sciences deal with pollution or potential pollution problems. This involves working with air, water and land quality for human habitation and sometimes for habitation by other organisms. Environmental impact reports feature prominently in the day-to-day work of environmental engineers. These scientists would be the ones involved in studying the impact of an industrial plant near the ocean or a metropolitan area's automobile emissions impact, designing municipal waste-management systems, and advising on how to treat an oil spill or the toxification of an environment. In order to do all these things, a strong understanding of the laws surrounding environment protection, industry, and human impact is important. Environmental engineers could be looking at a small localized geographic area, like one part of one city for example, or be looking at larger global issue that takes into account several inter-related geographies.

What skills or qualities do I need to become an Environmental Engineer?

Engineers must, of course, be able to complete all the necessary educational and professional requirements to become engineers at all. This indicates an intelligence type that is analytical, detail oriented and inquisitive. Creativity is also a necessary trait as it feeds into creative problem solving. Interpersonal skills are also highly necessary, as engineers almost always work with teams and other departments. Language - spoken and written - are also necessary due to not only the teaming aspect of an environmental engineer's job but also because of the necessity to communicate findings, present recommendations, etc. in written form.

How much does an Environmental Engineer make?

As of May 2007, the wage range for environmental engineers went from $44,000 to $108,000+. The largest number of environmental engineers are employed by professional services firms that specialize in architecture or environment engineering. The next largest employers were consulting firms and government/municipal entities.


Who are some influential professionals in this field?

A good rule of thumb of how to look at who is leading the profession of environmental engineering is to look at the leaders, board members and advisors in each of the below professional organizations. In addition, the American Academy of Environmental Engineers publishes a "Who's Who in Environmental Engineering" directory annually that lists out Board Certified Environmental Engineers (BCEE) or Board Certified Environmental Engineering Members (BCEEM).

What are some leading organizations in this field?

American Academy of Environmental Engineers - leading US professional organization for environmental engineering that offers specialized certification in the area of environmental engineering

American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers - US professional organization specifically aimed at promoting the advancement of engineering applicable to agricultural, food, and biological systems

Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors - US professional organization for environmental engineers and educators

ABET - Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Oversees accreditation of college and university engineering programs.

National Society of Professional Engineers - Primary national professional organization for PEs across all disciplines.

National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying - national organization composed of licensing boards from all US states and territories.

For a lists of state boards, visit the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying's website.

What are the top cities for Environmental Engineering jobs?

According to one source of information, the highest number of environmental engineers are employed in the state of Colorado by far. According to another source of information, the highest number of job openings seems to be in the state of California, which also happens to be the top-paying state for environmental engineers. There are a number of US cities where one could go to practice environmental engineering, but much depends on what types of organizations are hiring. For example, the military and government entities may be hiring while consulting and engineering firms are as well. As mentioned above, these represent the two largest employers of environmental engineers.

Other Careers of Interest

Aerospace Engineer
Although the tile of "engineer" can seem to be quite technical and specific, there are many areas of engineering; some of these areas are very different...

Chemical Engineer
Although the tile of "engineer" can seem to be quite technical and specific, there are many areas of engineering; some of these areas are very different...

Civil Engineer
Although the tile of "engineer" can seem to be quite technical and specific, there are many areas of engineering; some of these areas are very different...

Electrical Engineer
Although the tile of "engineer" can seem to be quite technical and specific, there are many areas of engineering; some of these areas are very different...

Electronics Engineer
Although the tile of "engineer" can seem to be quite technical and specific, there are many areas of engineering; some of these areas are very different...

Engineer
Although the tile of "engineer" can seem to be quite technical and specific, there are many areas of engineering; some of these areas are very different...

Industrial Engineer
Industrial Engineers employ scientific and mathematical principles to solve technical problems. In essence, an Industrial Engineer effectively determines...

Mechanical Engineer
Mechanical engineers are involved in the processes of researching and designing, developing, fabrication and verification of machines, various types...

Mining Engineer
Mining engineers can perform a variety of tasks. The first place you might find a mining engineer is near a prospective mine. A mining engineer...

Nuclear Engineer
Nuclear engineers do a number of tasks, some of which include: research on nuclear engineering problems; application of nuclear scientific theoretical...

Structural Engineer
Structural engineers analyze, design, plan, and research structural components and the systems that those components make up. While their work normally...

Transportation Engineer
There are several aspects to this job. For example, there is the planning side of transport engineering as it relates to urban planning, technical...



Environmental Engineering Jobs


Browse by Location | Browse by Career

Articles

More...

Career & College Resources


unsubscribe



Creative Commons License