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Most valuable masters degree for civil engineer?


zas07001

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I just started working for a construction company doing estimates and I'm trying to decide what masters degree to get. I've been told by my coworkers that construction management or an MBA would be most valuable but I'm not sure I really want to stay in construction. I'm considering structural (to go into design), or a dual MBA civil degree. Anyone have any sense of where the most money is/ job market will be going for young civil engineers?

Any advice or opinions are appreciated!

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  • 3 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...

I am going to address this another way. Before you go to Grad School, I would figure out what you want the Graduate degree to do for you. Why are you getting a graduate degree? That is a question that you really need to answer. What do you hope to do after you get it? There is nothing wrong with getting a graduate degree, however in today's world, I would want to figure out WHY you went and got the degree and how you were going to use it before you spent the time, effort and money going for it.

Assuming that you have done all of this and came up with an answer satisfactory to you--after all, it is only YOU that you have to satisfy, then go to the best school that you can get into. IN the MBA business, only about the top 10 schools are really worth value. Yes, you will learn from all of the others and YES, you will get some value, however, the top 10 schools give you the real value.

Think long and hard how this investment is going to pay return on investment-- that would be my position on graduate school today.

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Engineers are generally surprised when they graduate, at the amount of paperwork / meetings / phone calls they do. Go the MBA route and you'll take your non-engineering work to a higher level. Not that there is anything wrong with that, if it's what you want to do.

I am about 3/4 of the way through a construction management grad program. We are required to do a "specialty" outside our program of at least 9 credits. I am nearly a decade into working for the government, so I am doing a specialty of 12 credits in public administration and policy. Other guys in CM commonly do their specialties in business, supply chain, engineering, labor relations or education (if they plan to teach). Some then go ahead and get a second masters in their specialty. For example, I could get an MPA with 21 more credits. But I doubt that I will.

In my experience, most ads for upper management engineers in the public sector say "advanced degree" but don't specify a particular grad degree. So I'm not sure the PE/CM/MPA combo would be much better than just the PE/CM.

Also, take a look at number of credits. Minimum for grad programs is about 30 credits but some (especially MBA) can be 50+ credits.

Additionally, you might not meet the entrance requirements. Some of the MBA programs that I looked into, would have required me to take about a dozen undergrad credits in business before starting the MBA. Part of the reason I went the CM route was that I did not have to take any of those "collateral courses."

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