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Talk about flying under the radar and without a parachute!  This is what civil engineers have been doing their entire careers.  It’s not like they make reality shows or sitcoms about civil engineering companies, or there are many lead characters in the movies who are civil engineers.  To be honest, we civil engineers are not the most exciting or glamorous professionals, but there is something to be said about our career choice being the Second Most Underrated Jobs in America as determined by CareerCast an Internet career site.[1]

What does it mean to have an underrated job?  According to CareerCast these are jobs that have “increasing opportunities and rewarding potential for job seekers” without any glamour attached to them.  This year’s list was created using survey data looking at recent social and economic impact along with Bureau of Labor Statistics data.  The rankings were shaped by high growth, low stress, and rewarding opportunities – I can agree that civil engineering can be all three.

The surveys showed that Civil Engineers have a median salary of $78,133 with a projected growth rate of 19% - pretty impressive.  There are so many facets to civil engineering that one in our profession can choose what aspects they want to be involved with such as planning, design, inspection, or management of projects.  The projected increase in infrastructure-related construction was the major driver in the positive outlook for civil engineers.

The top ten Underrated Jobs in America are:

  1. Computer Systems Analyst
  2. Civil Engineer
  3. Veterinarian
  4. Biologist
  5. Market Research Analyst
  6. Accountant
  7. Legal Assistant
  8. Economist
  9. School Principal
  10. Plumber

On the flip side, CareerCast also determined the Most Overrated Jobs of 2012.  These were based on sharing high levels of stress, dwindling job markets, and have been hit hard amid economic turbulence.  They found that a common trait among these overrated jobs is allure.  It’s this appeal that helps deem them overrated.  The 10th most overrated job is an architect.  They say that people pursuing this career must be ready for high stress levels and a tough work environment.[i]

The top ten Overrated Jobs in America are:

  1. Advertising Agency Executive
  2. Senior Corporate Executive
  3. Commercial Airline Pilot
  4. Stockbroker
  5. Surgeon
  6. Attorney
  7. Public Relations Manager
  8. Flight Attendant
  9. Photojournalist
  10. Architect

If you have any further questions or comments about Civil Engineering, then please feel free to email or give me a call.

John M. Cruikshank, PE

310-241-6550 (x228)



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