Structural engineering focuses on the design of structures that are required to withstand loads and environmental elements. Structures can be categorized into houses, buildings and monuments. All of these structures are composed of a number of components arranged to use the fewest amount of material possible to produce the most stable construction. Collaboration with architects is required on most structural applications. Architects provide the external design and aesthetic appeal, while the engineers design the internal skeleton and foundations to ensure the building does not collapse.
Structural engineers prepare drawings and specifications of the structural elements. They have an exceptional understanding of materials and their properties, allowing them to select the best ones for every situation. Graduates possess fundamental design skills and require in-depth knowledge of building codes and regulations. Most opportunities are present in commercial and industrial construction companies. Many experienced structural engineers have their own consulting businesses.