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Civil Engineering


Civil engineering is directly related to facilities and systems used by the public in their daily life. Civil engineers are engaged in the planning, design, construction and maintenance of bridges, buildings, foundations, dams, sanitary and solid waste disposal systems and related environmental considerations, highways, airport facilities, transportation systems, waterways, hydroelectric installations, pipelines, coal preparation and loading facilities and other systems and structures.

At WVU Tech, our engineering students get a sound knowledge of science and a set of core courses in humanities and social sciences. The civil engineering curriculum has been designed to give students a broad coverage of all fields of civil engineering with some flexibility to explore a particular field of choice. This approach gives the WVU Tech graduate a well-rounded background to handle civil engineering projects.

Design is incorporated across the WVU Tech civil engineering curriculum, and the design experience begins early with some exposure in surveying and mechanics of materials courses. Design exposure continues in the junior and senior years with 11 courses having design components for a total of 20 hours of design. The design component is completed with a capstone design course in which student teams are responsible for the completion of a comprehensive civil engineering project with oral and written presentations of the project.

Meaningful design experience is also included in several of the required and elective civil engineering courses. Required courses and required elective courses which include significant design content are Hydraulic Engineering, Introduction to Environmental Engineering, Transportation Engineering, Construction Materials, Introductory Soil Mechanics, the required structural design elective (Structural Steel Design or Reinforced Concrete Design), the required geotechnical elective (Foundation Engineering, Groundwater and Seepage or Earthwork Design), the required environmental elective (Advanced Sanitary, Advanced Hydraulics, Engineering Hydrology or Solid Waste Management), the required transportation elective (Highway Engineering or Traffic Engineering) and Integrated Civil Engineering Design. The two additional electives (one CE course and one technical elective course) also must contain at minimum a total of two hours of design content.

Integrated Civil Engineering Design requires students to completely design a civil engineering project encompassing several of the civil engineering disciplines and principles of project and/or construction management, cost analysis, estimating and scheduling.. Discussion and consideration of constraints such as economic factors, safety, reliability, aesthetics, ethics and social impact are incorporated as a normal part of most design courses. Aesthetics and social impact are stressed in the Introduction to Environmental Engineering course. Ethics, safety, social impact and professional issues are covered in the Senior Engineering Seminar course.

Our civil engineering students typically obtain valuable work experience through employment or participation in the following:

    • West Virginia Department of Highways Summer Intern Program through WVU Tech: Students participating in this program must be civil engineering majors and have good academic standing. Those students that have at least one summer of internship are eligible to apply for WV Department of Highways scholarships.
    • Cooperative (Co-op) Education and Internship Programs through WVU Tech: Students who elect the cooperative education program alternate longer periods of full-time study with periods of full-time paid employment. They are also required to commit to a minimum of three work periods. Students who elect the internship program gain the same valuable paid work experience but for shorter periods of time, usually one or two weeks.
    • Employment by local engineering consulting firms: Employers will often contact the Department wanting to employ our students during the summer. Students find meaningful employment and excellent work experience in this fashion.

Students that participate in any of these work experiences may:

    • Earn money to finance their college education
    • Explore career opportunities
    • Enrich their classroom learning through real-world experience
    • Accumulate actual career-related work experience
    • Enhance their marketability after graduation
    • Establish valuable professional contacts
    • Improve their communication and interpersonal skills

Civil Engineering students get a solid background in the basic sciences, mathematics, engineering mechanics and introductory civil engineering courses in the first two years of our curriculum. The latter two years are devoted to the broad coverage of all fields of civil engineering and specialty courses in the student’s particular field of choice (environmental, structures, geotechnical, transportation or water resources areas). All civil engineering courses are taught by full-time faculty or qualified adjuncts having professional registration.

Students that enjoy building, constructing, designing or addressing environmental issues tend to enjoy our Civil Engineering Program.