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How to Become a Construction Manager by 2025

Become a construction manager by earning a degree in civil engineering with a concentration in construction management

Are you passionate about the construction industry? Do you think you have the innovative spirit needed to disrupt the industry and drive positive change? Are you looking for a construction management program that will empower you to secure a meaningful career in the next couple of years?

If this sounds like you, then you are probably seeking additional information regarding how to become a construction manager in the next two years. Join us in exploring and discussing actionable steps that you need to take in order to become a construction manager by 2025.

Download Vanderbilt University’s construction management guide to learn more  about obtaining a graduate degree in civil engineering that will prepare you to  transform the construction industry.

What Does it Take to be a Construction Manager?

If you’re thinking about entering the construction management field, it’s important that you first understand the industry: Construction managers are responsible for successfully overseeing and leading a variety of construction projects from beginning to end. 

Because construction managers are also project managers, these professionals must be organized, strategic thinkers who can collaborate with designers, architects, builders and other engineers to take theory and apply it to the construction process. Construction managers must also be knowledgeable about the latest methodologies and technologies in the construction management field and how to apply them. 

What Degree Do You Need to be a Construction Manager?

In today’s competitive and fast-paced professional landscape, an increasing number of employers are choosing candidates with graduate-level credentials over professionals who hold only a bachelor’s degree. With a graduate engineering degree that is focused on construction management, you will position yourself as a thought leader in the field of construction management and an indispensable asset to any team.

5 Things to Look For in a Construction Management Program

Before choosing to invest in a construction management program, you need to carefully consider how the program will equip you with the skills and tools necessary to adapt, succeed and thrive in the competitive construction management field. 

Here’s what you should consider when evaluating a construction management program.

1. Teaches the fundamentals of civil engineering

As a discipline, construction management blends the fundamentals of civil engineering, the art of project management and the application of skills within the built environment. For this reason, a quality construction management program will teach the important civil engineering theories and applications needed to succeed in the dynamic and multifaceted construction management field.

Discover more in our blog, Civil Engineers Need a Construction Management Degree — Here’s Why

2. Offers experiential learning opportunities

Careers in construction management are application based and thus, require professionals to engage in real-world training experiences prior to entering the field. A quality construction management program will provide opportunities to engage in experiential learning such as field experience, internships or other forms of hands-on training.

3. Provides opportunities for customization

Construction managers are needed to oversee and lead construction projects in a variety of industries, such as health care, sustainability, government agencies and smart technology. A quality construction management program will allow students to customize their coursework in order to specialize in a particular area of interest — making students more marketable upon graduation.

4. Emphasizes faculty and student collaboration

When pursuing a graduate degree, it’s important to collaborate with experts who have field experience and to learn from and with thought leaders who have strategic expertise. A quality construction management program will prioritize the collaboration between faculty and students in order to promote an intimate culture of knowledge-sharing and innovation.

5. Utilizes an accessible program completion format

If you’re working to launch your construction management career in the next couple of years, it’s important to choose a graduate program that will allow you the flexibility to efficiently obtain your degree. A quality construction management program will provide you the opportunity to efficiently achieve a graduate degree without sacrificing the quality of your education.

Learn the Disciplines of Civil Engineering and Construction Management in One Degree

If you are wondering how to become a construction manager, you should know that Vanderbilt University School of Engineering offers a master of engineering in civil engineering with a concentration in construction management that is specifically designed to prepare graduates to secure meaningful careers in the construction field. 

Vanderbilt University’s multidisciplinary program teaches the latest developments in construction technologies and software with management principles to understand, address and solve the broad range of challenges confronting the construction industry — now, and in the future.

At Vanderbilt University, you can complete a quality construction management program that is:

  • Built on the fundamentals of civil engineering 
  • Focused on experiential learning (all CM students secure a paid internship prior to graduation)
  • Customizable (CM students may choose one of six areas of emphasis)
  • Led by experts who have years of field experience
  • Attainable in as little as 18 months
  • Part of an intimate engineering community (the graduate student-to-faculty ratio is 5:1)

Vanderbilt School of Engineering's master of engineering in civil engineering with a concentration in construction management offers the following areas of emphasis, allowing students to customize coursework based on their specific interests:

  • Health care construction — explore the unique challenges of building new health care facilities and renovating existing facilities while maintaining operational capacity
  • Project delivery systems — engage with in-depth analysis of traditional and modern project delivery systems such as Design-Build, PPP, Design-Assist and IPD and their application for various projects
  • Project constructability analysis — learn comprehensive constructability and risk analysis for projects from pre-project planning through turnover including modularization and prefabrication
  • Building information management — gain a thorough understanding of BIM protocols, contracts and hands-on experience for designing and creating 4-D models
  • Smart/green buildings — explore why the design of Intelligent Buildings and Green Buildings continues to rise globally; be exposed to Green Building Codes and LEEDTM criteria
  • Project schedule reduction techniques — engage in analyzing risk for project crashing and examining cost-schedule trade-offs for fast-tracking projects

Your Path to Becoming a Construction Manager Starts at Vanderbilt School of Engineering

At Vanderbilt School of Engineering, we produce principled and ethical professionals whose career trajectories leverage their Vanderbilt experience to achieve professional growth and impact.

Graduates of the master of engineering in civil engineering with a concentration in construction management enter the construction field with the engineering education and skills needed to impact progress and challenge conventional thinking.

You have the opportunity to join a diverse, rich community of current and future engineering experts who will effectively prepare you to succeed in the competitive construction management field. If you are ready to join the Vanderbilt engineering community, we invite you to request more information or start your online application today.

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