All over the country, a boom in domestic oil and gas production and a resurgence of construction after the recession have led to a demand for highly skilled engineers who can successfully turn an idea into a product for the public.
According to the Houston Chronicle, civil engineers especially are gaining from the rise in demand for their services, and what's more, U.S. News and World Report recently named the profession as one of the Top 10 Best Jobs in Technology for 2012.
"We see the work of civil engineers everywhere, in all kinds of industries, from buildings and infrastructures such as roadways, reservoirs, bridges to commercial high-rises," said Rene Divina, discipline chief at Foster Wheeler USA Corp.
According to the news source, the career opportunities for civil engineers hinge upon the candidate's interest and skills. Whether it's to build skyscrapers, wastewater treatment plants or highway interconnectors, there appears to be a growing number of people drawn to the career. To improve their chances of landing an engineering job, many are expanding the breadth of their search, with many civil engineers finding work in structural analysis, architecture, traffic, geotechnical engineering and many others.
"The best reward is to be able to witness the fruit of labor before our eyes and having impact on the lives of ordinary citizens," Divina said.
With the U.S. pumping up it's domestic oil and gas extraction activity to record levels, chemical and petroleum engineers are also seeing high times right now. A separate article in the Chronicle stated that this boom in production, coupled with changes in the engineering environment such as technological advancements and globalization, have tremendously improved job prospects for such engineers.
Industry employment has grown so quickly that the South Texas Section of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (STS-ALChE) has been holding meetings to ensure the new wave of engineers are fully involved in industry goings-on.
"Our meetings and conferences provide an opportunity for engineers to share developments; and best practices to improve safety, reduce emissions and improve energy efficiency," said James Turner, chair of STS-ALChE. "Improvements in these areas benefit society as a whole, in addition to helping the engineers and their companies."
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 51,500 new civil engineering jobs are expected to be created by 2020, with a growth rate of about 19 percent.