Engineers in Demand

According to the American Engineering Alliance, there are three million engineers in the U.S. and more than 10 million worldwide. It’s hard to imagine a shortage with the number of engineers in the millions, yet educators, corporations, and employment centers report a severe deficiency of engineers and assert there are not enough to meet increasing civil engineering demands through 2020. The primary reason for the shortage, as cited by Knovel, is a “direct correlation between retirees and a perceived drop in eligible participants.”

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that about 53,700 civil engineering jobs need to be filled between 2012 and 2022. Principal Resource Group, an engineering employment agency, explains the basis for this growing need:

Spurred by general population growth and an increased emphasis on infrastructure, security, and renewable energy, more civil engineers will be needed to design and construct safe and efficient transportation, water supply, and pollution control systems, as well as large buildings and building complexes. They also will be needed to repair or replace existing roads, bridges, and other public structures.

Many blame the shortage on the decreasing number of students pursuing their education in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Perhaps that is why this year’s theme for Engineers Week, Let’s Make a Difference, focuses on introducing young people to engineering and its wide range of career options—from designing solutions for their industry of choice here at home, to helping sustain developing communities in other countries through Engineers Without Borders (EWB-USA).

Making a Difference

Anticipating the twenty-first-century’s global needs for students with STEM professions, GAI supports young engineering professionals through in-house educational, internship, and scholarship opportunities. Through regular apprenticeship programs, groups of high school students tour GAI’s offices and experience the daily workplace activities of practicing engineers by shadowing and participating in interactive presentations given by our engineering leaders in a variety of disciplines.

At the college level, GAI awards annual $5,000 scholarships to college juniors. Candidates who perform well during our paid internship assignments are considered for full-time employment when they receive their degree. Learning is ongoing here—from a Leadership Development Program, to technical Lunch-and-Learn sessions, to sponsoring an in-house MBA program through an accredited university.

Salute to Engineers Everywhere

The U.S. News review of best careers rated Civil Engineer as No. 18 on the “2014 List of 100 Best Jobs.” The article quoted Andrew Hermann, former president of the American Society of Civil Engineers: “To create things, to actually see them being built…it’s very rewarding to see the results of what you saw on paper.”

So, as we celebrate Engineers Week, we “tip our hats” to engineers everywhere—all those who design, build, and find innovative solutions to challenging world issues. We salute our GAI consulting engineers, those we team with, and future engineers who will face new and exciting challenges ahead.

Would you like a GAI Speaker, tour, or presentation for your future engineers?

Email Diane Landers, PhD, MBA, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer.

References and Resources

American Engineering Alliance Website.

Edleson, Harriet, U.S. News, Money Careers, Best Technology Jobs, Civil Engineer, January 2014.

Engineers Without Borders (EWB) Web Site, accessed 1.29.2014

Knovel Corporation Website, “Engineers will Remain in High Demand in 2014,” accessed 1.3.2014.

Principal Resource Group Website, Industry Focus, “The Future is Bright for the Engineering and Construction Industries,” ©2014,

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