12+ Skills civil engineering students must have

Saad Iqbal | 🗓️Modified: February 2, 2014 | ⏳Read Time: 10 min | 👁Post Views: 114
Throughout the four years I have spent in an engineering college I have gone through various challenges and difficult situations where your survival sometimes look difficult for you and you think
“Now it’s the time to leave this world”. Don’t take engineering as easy as sciences or arts, although not any work in this world is easy but civil engineering by no means is easy.

Skills civil engineering students must have

Firstly entering in an engineering college itself is a challenge and if your are among those few lucky ones who have got this change – then be happy now fellow because you have got that potential and you have those solid nerves and patience that is needed ultimately.

Now let me state here the worlds of my heart. “Among the other entire tough engineering disciplines civil engineering is toughest and the most difficult one”; you might laugh at me once, but after you have grinded in the crusher for four years your heart will speak the same sentence. The truth of this sentence can also be observed after counting the number of female students you have with you in your class. 😛

One of the very irritating thing you will observe in your starting years is people making statements like
“Civil is chill”
“They have nothing to do except staring at girls”
“They are the poor masons without instruments.”
“They are the only ones…always single……”
And bla bla.

Why you have to face these statements? Answer is simple it is because apparently it feels to others that civil engineering is very easy and one might say “Oh! Yeah! Those poor illiterate contractors can also build a house for me very easily, I dn’t need you!” but the only one standing alone within the fighting ring knows how those punches and kicks feel.
In this post I will be sharing with you the skills and abilities a civil engineering students must have so as to be a successful professional civil engineer for this world.

Patience and Control on Anger


Now you have already listened to those statements, results of those statements would only be anger in you; lets first know the reason why patience is needed, listening to teachers for continuous hours without break, listening to the statements of your parents and specially father, bearing the cold irritating behavior of your class fellows, seeing no beauty and colors in your life, and a lot more others. These all factors will make your brain hot, you will easily lose your temper, so you must have some patience and control over it otherwise the results will be problems, fights, more statements, and more anger.
So try to develop an ignoring attitude to what others say, always keeps a smile on your face, remain positive and let other do what they are doing and only thing you can change is yourself, develop yourself as a calm and cool engineer.



It is a basic need for being a successful human on this planet. Confidence will cover your inabilities and your weaknesses. It is like if we have a black ball with sun, we will not see it. So if you have confidence you will shine along with all of your weakness. Confidence is needed because you constantly have to give presentations, even in examinations you might have to give vivas; and it is like a short interview in which your instructor will judge and mark you on the basis of your confidence. Similarly to make new friends and to have a healthy communication with them you need confidence. Because it is a professional study where every one might have his/her own opinion and own designs you must have confidence on your abilities and skills to prove yourself right.
You can develop confidence by self-motivating yourself, set an aim and goal for yourself and when you will achieve it you will feel confident, participate in extra-curricular activities, sports and games it will boost up your confidence.

Physically Strong


It is the very important requirement and is needed because you in your education have to handle stones, aggregates, crush, heavy manual testing equipment, heavy machines, buckets and so on.
Similarly you have to stand while doing manual drawing for hours, and if on computer using structural and drawing softwares you need have that strong back-bone and strong mental skills to remain active and remain confident.
You in survey might have to handle equipment in rough and tough environment, might be too cold or 
might be too hot, but you have to handle, you must have strong immunity to fight with those extreme weathers and those extreme laboratory environment having smell of burning sulfurs, dusting cement, soil, blasting sounds of breaking steel bars and so much more.
You have to eat well, stay healthy, sleep as required, do exercise, take fruits and juices, protect yourself from unhealthy activities and drugs etc.

Absorb Pressure

It is already being explained why pressure is there, your family might not be that much strong 
economically they might be trusting you to get educated and earn a good livelihood for you and for them and thus they would be trusting you and they will have dozens of expectations for you. You at the other end are facing the odds and difficulties as a front war fighter.  You have to learn skills, softwares, remembers countless figures and countless points in your mind, thick chubby books of hundreds of pages and so on.
Thus you have stay calm, because if you take tension you might not be able to solve questions you will lose hope and will ultimately caught in that fear hole. Try to practice your religion and get those superficial powers in yourself and take help from that motivation.

Good Communication Skills

Civil engineering starts by communication, you in field have to satisfy your clients, you must have 
ability to say what your mind imagines and thinks, you have to constantly stay in touch with contractor and consultant and architects and thus you have to make your point and tell them what is feasible and what not.
In class you might not understand a thing and to ask a question from your instructor you will have to have that strong edge in communication skills, any one even not that much strong technically can excel if he/she has strong communication skills.
Try to talk as much as you can with your friends on facebook, on calls, in real life as well. You in start might have a fear calling a stranger like some service stations or some companies, you must have to overcome that fear to be successful.

Good Drawing skills 


Drawing is the language of engineers. You can’t communicate that much with words and writings as 
you can with drawings. You must have strong imagination as what a thing will look like in a different perspective view. You might have to draw elevations, sections and so much. You must be able to use manual drawing tools like T-Square, Set Square. Even if you use AutoCAD, you must have that skill because softwares just helps you they don’t have brain.
Try to sketch anything that interests you, you only need a paper and a pencil and a rubber to initiate creativity. Don’t hesitate that what others will say or how they comment. Just be confident and tell the world you have got skills. 

Strong in Mental Calculation

Calculation is what civil engineers mostly do after eating :P, as you might not have always a pocket calculator your brain must be that much fast in calculation that you might not need calculator very often.
You must be able to sum up or subtract or multiply or divide things on your finger tips. Because in calls your teacher might say “What is the dia of #4 bar” you will say ½” instantly but if you dn’t have that skill you will open up the calculator and say 4/8 = 1/2=0.5 and then say sir “0.5” and up to that time the class might be ended.

Must be rough and tough


That totally depends on what sort of field or major you select as your career, but if you hate extreme weathers, and harsh environments your chances for survival will be minimized.

Good Computer Skills


Because now a day’s computer has overcome all the calculations, manual drawing and manual structural calculations are now very rare and obsolete. Now engineers use ETABS, STAAD Pro and AutoCAD, and etc. etc. These all require from you a strong computer basic skills, you if have computer phobia that if will be difficult for you, you must start by just playing with it, do experiments, and see what happens. It will be a fun.

Good Convincing Skills

“No one is perfect” but if you have confidence you will say “NO ONE is perfect, and I am that NO ONE”. In civil engineering every field and every task has got variables that are obvious to have different answers for different humans. So you must have that convincing skills to tell others why you answer is more economical and more correct than others. Its like a marketing skills that are obviously required. Because you have to justify yourself.

Time Management


Time as we all know is money, you have to use it effectively and efficiently. Try to develop a schedule on daily basis follow it, set goals for each day and fight to achieve that goal.

Common Sense


“Civil engineering is an engineering of common sense”, this is the sentence that is being told by most of our teachers. Because in civil engineering whatever we build or whatever we develop it is physical, we don’t play with charges moving and we don’t see them. We play with bricks, aggregates, cement, sand, steel, you name it and we can touch that we can feel that and thus most laws and procedure are physical.
To understand and to imagine you must have a common sense. Like if you are a manager and you have to schedule a project activities, you must not set erecting walls before excavation and foundation design so there the common sense come.
But common sense is not very common 😀

From Editor’s Desk


Civil engineering is a very interesting and very challenging field. But as it is rightly said, the more difficult the task is, the more beautiful the result will be. So don’t lose hope or don’t let yourself down, Your destiny is a few steps away.
I Hope you’d like the post, lets share it with your friends, there are many options available down there.

Leave a Comment