How to Become a Structural Engineer?

Are you thinking of becoming a Structural Engineer or already started your career and planning the next step? Learn how to become a Structural Engineer, what skills you need to succeed, how to advance your career and get promoted, and what levels of pay to expect at each step on your career path. Explore new Structural Engineer job openings and options for career transitions into related roles.

Steps to Become a Structural Engineer

If you're considering starting your Structural Engineer career path, it's important to note the skills, qualifications, and time it takes to become a professional Structural Engineer and how to advance your career path. Below are the steps generally required to begin and advance your Structural Engineer career.

Earn a Degree

To begin your Structural Engineer career path, a Bachelor's Degree in civil engineering or a related field is usually necessary in order to remain a competitive option for employers. Focus on industry-specific skill development during your education in order to be properly equipped when applying for entry-level positions and entering the job force. A Structural Engineer internship may be required to earn your Bachelor's Degree and acquire necessary on-the-job skills before entering the workforce.

What type of degree should you pursue to become a Structural Engineer?

68% of people working as a Structural Engineer earned a Bachelor's Degree

What skills do you need to be a Structural Engineer?

  • AutoCAD
  • Excellent Communication
  • Microsoft Office Suite
  • Revit
  • Mathcad
  • Staad
  • Steel Design
  • Security Clearance
Based on resume data from Glassdoor users who reported working as a Structural Engineer in the United States.

Choose a Specialty in Your Field

As an Structural Engineer, you may be required to choose a specialty within your field. Determine which part of the Structural Engineer field you feel strongest in, and continue taking active steps toward growing in your chosen Structural Engineer specialty.

Get an Entry-Level Position as a Structural Engineer

Once you've acquired a Bachelor's Degree in civil engineering or a related field, you'll typically begin your career as an entry-level Structural Engineer. In general, you can become a Structural Engineer after completing your 4 year Bachelor's Degree in a related discipline. Depending on the type of Structural Engineer role you’re pursuing, you may want to explore certification in certified inspector preferred, certified safety professional, ireb certified professional for requirements engineering.

Advance in Your Structural Engineer Career

Following entry-level, there are several Structural Engineer career path levels to advance into. It can take 2 years as an entry-level Structural Engineer to progress to the senior structural engineer position. Each advanced Structural Engineer position requires approximately 2 years of experience at each level to advance in your Structural Engineer career path. It may be necessary to receive additional education, an advanced degree such as a Master's Degree in a related field, or special certifications in order to advance your Structural Engineer career path.

Continued Education for Your Structural Engineer Career Path

Not all industries and companies require continued education to advance your Structural Engineer career path. However, earning this degree may help you advance to higher-earning positions more quickly. Earning a Graduate Degree in civil engineering can take 4 years to complete. People that have earned their Graduate Degree typically make $109,153 compared to $60,046 for those without that type of degree.

Structural Engineer Career Path

Structural Engineer

2 - 4Years of Experience
$90K - $134K /yrMost Likely Range
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43% advanced to

Senior Structural Engineer

2 - 4Years of Experience
$145K - $218K /yrMost Likely Range
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Lead Structural Engineer

5 - 7Years of Experience
$131K - $199K /yrMost Likely Range
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Total Pay Trajectory

Structural Engineer Career Path

Structural Engineer I
Structural Engineer
Senior Structural Engineer
Structural Engineer Manager
Lead Structural Engineer
Senior Manager of Structural Engineering
Principal Structural Engineer
Director of Structural Engineering
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Related Careers in the Engineering Industry

Interested in other Engineering careers? Below are occupations that have high affinity with Structural Engineer skills. Discover some of the most common Structural Engineer career transitions, along with skills overlap.

Structural Analysis Engineer
13% skills overlap
24% transitioned to Structural Analysis Engineer