The art and science of civil engineering help adapt the
needs of people and natural resources to the environment.
Thus, the civil engineer is involved in the planning, design,
and construction of many of the developments that make modern
life possible. Dams, tunnels, bridges, buildings, housing,
highways, airports, railroads, and water and wastewater
systems are all creations of the civil engineer.
Civil engineers work in planning, design, building construction,
research, plant operation, government, law, teaching, and
administration. Whatever their jobs, civil engineers must
combine the technical expertise of the engineering profession
with a social awareness and an interest in humanity. Because
of the growing dependence of society on engineering technology,
the civil engineer will always be in demand.
Environmental engineering is that branch of engineering concerned with the application of scientific and engineering principles for the:
- protection of human populations from the effects of adverse environmental factors;
- protection of environments, both local and global, from the potentially deleterious effects of natural and human activities; and
- improvement of environmental quality.
Environmental engineers use the principles of biology and chemistry to develop solutions to environmental problems. They are involved in water and air pollution control, recycling, waste disposal, and public health issues. Environmental engineers conduct hazardous-waste management studies in which they evaluate the significance of the hazard, advise on its treatment and containment, and develop regulations to prevent mishaps. They design municipal water supply and industrial wastewater treatment systems, conduct research on the environmental impact of proposed construction projects, analyze scientific data, and perform quality-control checks. Environmental engineers are concerned with local and worldwide environmental issues, including protecting water quality, global warming, automobile emissions, and ozone depletion. Many environmental engineers work as consultants, helping their clients to comply with regulations, prevent environmental damage, and clean up hazardous sites.
Educational Objectives for the
The following statement of program educational objectives
for the undergraduate programs in civil and environmental
engineering at Michigan State University (MSU) was formally
adopted by the department in 2009. These objectives are
periodically revisited to ensure their currency.
- The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, through its baccalaureate programs in civil engineering and environmental engineering, provides opportunities to obtain the knowledge, skills, and professional perspective needed for:
- advancement in civil or environmental engineering practice and the pursuit of advanced studies;
- life-long learning;
- professional practice consistent with the principles of sustainable development;
- continuing professional development and leadership; and
all leading to career success.
The undergraduate curriculum, courses, organizations and
activities prepare graduates to:
- apply mathematics, science and contemporary methods to the
formulation and solution of engineering problems;
- specify and conduct standard laboratory analyses, interpret
data, formulate recommendations based on test results, and build
understanding through experimentation;
- design systems, components and processes that conform to specifications
and produce the intended benefits;
- communicate effectively in writing and speech;
- employ interpersonal and social skills required for working
on a team, in an organization, and with the general public;
- honor professional ethics;
- respect societal and environmental impacts of engineering;
- understand contemporary issues in engineering practice.
The educational objectives are promoted and supported
by a departmental community of students, faculty and staff
characterized by integrity and by respect for individuals,
society, the environment, the engineering profession, and
engineering education and institutions.