Good engineering career for being outside

Hello Janelle! I am a 17 year old senior interested in engineering. I have a few questions to ask, as I am still unclear on what I want to do. First off, I love being in the outdoors, love hunting, and I love math. I know being an engineer is a lot of office work, but are there any careers as an engineer where I could spend a good bit of time outside? Secondly, I first thought of going into Mining Engineering, as I'm located in the heart of the coal industry in Southwestern PA, but due to the push of more clean-burning energy, I'm not sure if I should stay set on that direction. What are your thoughts? Thank you!
posted by Jenna, Pennsylvania on July 8, 2013

Answer by Janelle Leafblad

Thanks for this great question, Jenna! I believe there are many opportunities available that are compatible with your interests. I would encourage you to look into: Construction Engineering and Management, Forest Engineering, Surveying, and branches of Civil/Environmental Engineering such as geotechnical and water resources. All of these programs and professions have an increased amount of outdoor site work.

Additionally, with regards to engineering office work, I’ve noticed that the ‘typical’ office environment is changing with increased use of mobile applications for project engineering. I have had the opportunity to do a great deal of site work but instead of returning to the office to write a report or draw a detail, I am able to do more of that work right there in the field. In the office, spaces are becoming more collaborative and walls are coming down.

Good luck with your senior year and college/career search!