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Environmental Engineering Overview - Preparation - Day In The Life -
Earnings - Employment - Career Path Forecast - Professional Organizations 


Preparation
Environmental engineers should be creative, inquisitive, analytical, and detail oriented.  They must have a strong grasp of mathematics, including algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and calculus; sciences, such as biology, chemistry, and physics; and computer systems.  Abilities to work as part of a team and to communicate well also will be important as environmental engineers' jobs become more diversified and require interaction with specialists outside engineering.  To hone these skills, recommended coursework includes English, writing, social studies, and humanities.

Environmental Engineering Programs
A bachelor's degree in engineering is required for almost all entry-level engineering jobs. Accredited environmental engineering programs usually provide broad studies in the physical, chemical, and biological sciences in addition to course work in civil, mechanical, and/or chemical engineering. In some programs, students may participate in an environmental engineering option within civil engineering, chemical engineering, or other degree programs. It is important to select a program that is accredited in Environmental Engineering.  Some graduate level programs are also available in Environmental Engineering.

Admission Requirements
Admissions requirements for undergraduate engineering schools include a solid background in mathematics (algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and calculus) and science (biology, chemistry, and physics), and courses in English, social studies, humanities, and computer and information technology. Bachelor's degree programs in engineering typically are designed to last 4 years, but many students find that it takes between 4 and 5 years to complete their studies. In a typical 4-year college curriculum, the first 2 years are spent studying mathematics, basic sciences, introductory engineering, humanities, and social sciences. In the last 2 years, most courses are in engineering, usually with a concentration in one branch. For example, the last two years of an environmental program might include courses in solid waste management, treatment plant design, hydraulic design, and hazardous waste management.

Co-ops
Internships and Coops provide students with a great opportunity to gain real-world experience while still in school. Click here for more information.

Courses of Study
Environmental Engineering is most closely related to civil and chemical engineering. It requires knowledge in many fields of science, including physics, chemistry, hydrology, geology, and biology. Undergraduate students working toward a degree in Environmental Engineering will take courses that cover these fields including microbiology, organic chemistry, microbiology, hydrology, engineering geology and others. 

Accredited Programs
Those interested in a career in Environmental Engineering should consider reviewing engineering programs that are accredited by ABET, Inc. If you choose to attend a program that is not ABET accredited, you should be sure that the university is regionally accredited.


Note: Some resources in this section are provided by the US Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

 


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