June 29, 2021
 | Students

Construction Career Options for College Graduates

There is a growing demand for talent and skills in the construction industry. While many construction jobs don’t require a four-year degree, there are also good opportunities for college graduates in the industry — including some in fields that might not initially sound related to construction.

What you need to know

There are many different ways to work in construction. The majority of the demand is for craft professionals who work in the field, building houses, skyscrapers, bridges, roads and parks. According to public records, the average construction worker in the US earns $54.9K annually. These professions, including carpentry, welding, masonry, electrical, HVAC, plumbing and more, typically get their education through apprenticeships and craft training programs, such as NCCER.

Construction companies also have needs for other types of employees who work off-site or in an office. These include management and planning positions, as well as jobs in a variety of different departments within a company. These jobs are more likely to require a bachelor’s degree.

One route to earn these jobs is for professionals experienced in the field to eventually move into a managerial or leadership position, often going to school to earn a degree paid for by their company. Other people may pursue these types of careers by attending college straight out of high school.


Construction career paths

Various construction career options are open to people with a university education background. Some of the academic pursuits you can take that are relevant to the construction industry include:



Architects combine engineering skills, construction knowledge and artistry to design structures and buildings. Architects must take various factors into account during the design process —factors such as building codes, costs of construction and the functionality of structures. As an architect, you will be involved directly or indirectly in the entire development process of buildings.


Civil Engineering

If you are graduating as a civil engineer, rest assured you can offer value in the construction industry. A major in this course will give you the necessary skills to design and coordinate solid structures. As a civil engineer, you will learn to plan for different factors in your construction plans, like construction costs, government regulations and safety hazards.

You will also stand in as a supervisor in construction sites, which is an excellent career bump for people looking for a lucrative construction career path.


Project Management

As a construction project manager, your job is to plan the construction timeline, obtain permits, work directly with clients and manage contractors. These professionals are versatile and are important to the success of a construction project.

Project management is one of the best paying jobs in construction. The average salary for a mid-level construction project manager is around $75,000 annually. However, depending on your location, education level and employer, you may earn over $174,000 annually.



You may not initially think of getting a law degree to work in construction, but these fields are more closely connected than you thought. Construction law is an aspect of legal practice that involves the regulation of construction work. There are several rules construction companies must adhere to, and as a construction lawyer, you ensure those rules are complied with. You are also to oversee agreements between the parties involved in a construction task. Construction projects and contracts are complex, so clients will need you to resolve conflicts that could otherwise stall projects with your knowledge and legal qualifications.



What is the connection between an individual and their designed environment or social setting? What relationship does an organization have with the building they reside in? Architectural sociology approaches these questions by examining how architectural structures influence and react to sociocultural phenomena.

A prominent part of our experiences and social interactions occurs in our homes and places of work. That is why you can easily find people attaching sentimental value to their houses. Architectural sociologists use sociological perspectives to improve building structures and designs.



Construction makes a literal mark in the sands of time with the structures it erects. If you find your way into the industry as a college graduate, you stand to earn more than a decent salary. Whatever your interests, skills and education background, you can start a construction career.