structural engineering jobs in canada

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structural engineering jobs
structural engineering jobs in canada
structural engineer jobs in canada

what you need to know about structural engineering jobs

Structural engineers were originally considered part of the civil engineering branch. As a result, many of your duties as a structural engineer overlap with civil engineers'. Your workday consists of overseeing the design, analysis, building, and maintenance of load bearing structures. With increased spending in road construction and other building activity, the demand for structural engineers in Canada is on the rise.

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average structural engineer salaries in canada

As condos, retail centres, roads and other infrastructure is built, your expertise is needed to ensure these structures are safe and durable. Given the current housing boom in Canada, the volume of new structures being built is on the rise. Your employer relies on your expertise to ensure all these new buildings and structures are up to code and they offer compensation that reflects this important responsibility. Most structural engineers will be able to secure a starting salary in the mid-$60,000 range, or more in hot markets.

Demand for structural engineers is fairly consistent across Canada, with western provinces seeing a slight edge over eastern provinces. The weakest market is Quebec, where starting salaries dip well below $60,000. This is a pattern we see with all engineering jobs in the province, however. That said, as a structural engineer, you should have no problem finding work anywhere in Canada.

 

 

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structural engineer jobs in canada

what structural engineering jobs entail

Unlike some engineering branches, structural engineers spend much of their time in the field at job sites where roads, bridges, dams, plants, condos, and other structures are being constructed or renovated. Though you're well versed in theoretical engineering principles, you also have hands-on job experience on construction sites.

As a structural engineer, you ensure the construction projects you oversee are structurally sound, non-invasive to the environment, and compliant with government codes. Your branch of engineering is incredibly hands-on and requires you to be deeply involved in the practical applications of building designs and construction. Your presense on job site helps guide construction crews.

structural engineer jobs canada

your day to day work

Structural engineers divides their time between design review and site visits. As a structural engineer, some of your daily tasks will include:

  • confirming that construction complies with the plans
  • ensuring federal, provincial and municipal codes are met
  • analyzing environmental factors
  • keeping up with best industry practices
  • ensuring the build complies with sound engineering principles
  • making recommendations when there are discrepancies
  • verifying that necessary changes are made
  • signing off on adjustments to the project
structural engineer jobs canada

where you can work

Structural engineers will find they can work in either the public or private sector, in engineering firms, public administration, residential, commercial, and industrial construction, amusement park design, manufacturing, and transportation.

Currently, the strongest demand for structural engineers in centred in Canada's western provinces, though there are some exceptions, such as Toronto. Cities such as Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton are where your best job prospects lie. Salaries in these cities are significantly higher than in most eastern provinces. If you haven't already, it may be worth considering a move to western Canada to take advantage of the much higher compensation.

what you bring to the table

Given the hands-on nature of structural engineering jobs, many employers prefer candidates who have gained experience in a cooperative education program for entry level jobs. For more intensive projects, several years of experience may be required.

To be successful as a structural engineer, you'll need to be an expert in building codes and the principles of construction and engineering. In addition to your technical compentencies, employers will also be looking for candidates who:

  • are highly innovative and capable of solving problems
  • are able to work well with other engineers and construction crews
  • know federal, provincial and municipal building codes inside out
  • have prior on the job experience in civil or structural engineering
  • strong leadership capabilites and able to direct construction workers
  • adapt well to harsh or uncomfortable work settings (job sites aren't known for their comfort!)

training and certifications

Structural engineers must have a Bachelor's degree, usually in civil engineering. A graduate degree in structural engineering is a plus, and will likely be a necessity to advance your career. Given the strong international flavor of Canada, candidates who speak multiple languages have an especially bright fuuture in this field.

Engineering is a regulated profession in Canada, so you'll also need to be properly licensed. Obtaining your engineering license indicates that you have all the educational requirements, supervised work experience, and training needed to perform your job to a professional standard. In most Canadian provinces, this certification is P.Eng, though the exact title varies.

where your career is headed

As a structural engineer, you can advance to senior engineering and supervisory positions. Since you work in a multidisciplinary environment, you may decide to move into other related fields as you gain experience. For example, structural engineers often move into city planning, other engineering disciplines, sales, management, or even law.

With increasing concern for safety, weather-resistance, and environmental impact in the construction industry, structural engineers are more in demand that ever. Having the complete package of education, experience, software expertise, and problem-solving skills will help an upcoming structural engineer go far.

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