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Career and Education Opportunities for Civil Draftsmen in Detroit, Michigan

If you want to be a civil draftsman, the Detroit, Michigan area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. There are currently 2,190 jobs for civil draftsmen in Michigan and this is projected to grow by 3% to 2,270 jobs by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for civil draftsmen are expected to grow by about 9.1%. In general, civil draftsmen prepare drawings and topographical and relief maps used in civil engineering projects, such as highways, bridges, pipelines, flood control projects, and water and sewerage control systems.

A person working as a civil draftsman can expect to earn about $21 per hour or $45,180 per year on average in Michigan and about $21 per hour or $44,490 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Earnings for civil draftsmen are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Drafting in Michigan and not quite as good as general Drafting category earnings nationally. Civil draftsmen work in a variety of jobs, including: civil cad tech , truss designer, and plumbing designer.

There are seventy-three schools of higher education in the Detroit area, including eight within twenty-five miles of Detroit where you can get a degree to start your career as a civil draftsman. The most common level of education for civil draftsmen is an Associate's, or other 2-year degree. You can expect to spend about two years training to become a civil draftsman if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Civil Draftsman

In general, civil draftsmen prepare drawings and topographical and relief maps used in civil engineering projects, such as highways, bridges, pipelines, flood control projects, and water and sewerage control systems.

Civil draftsmen produce drawings using computer-assisted drafting systems (CAD) or drafting machines, or by hand using compasses, dividers, protractors, triangles and other drafting devices. They also draft plans and detailed drawings for structures and construction projects such as highways, sewage disposal systems, and dikes, working from sketches or notes. Equally important, civil draftsmen have to decide on the order of work and method of presentation. They are often called upon to finish and duplicate drawings and documentation packages, in line with required mediums and requirements for reproduction using blueprinting or other duplicating methods. They are expected to inspect rough sketches and other engineering data received from civil engineers to insure that they conform to layout concepts. Finally, civil draftsmen explain drawings to production or construction teams and furnish adjustments as needed.

Every day, civil draftsmen are expected to be able to read and understand documents and reports. They need to see details at a very fine level of focus. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for civil draftsmen to decide on quality, cost, strength and quantity of required materials, and enter figures on materials lists. They are often called upon to locate and identify symbols located on topographical surveys to denote geological and geophysical formations or oil field installations. They also calculate weights and stress factors and their implications for technical aspects of designs. They are sometimes expected to supervise or conduct field surveys, inspections or technical investigations to obtain data used to revise construction drawings. Somewhat less frequently, civil draftsmen are also expected to produce drawings using computer-assisted drafting systems (CAD) or drafting machines, or by hand using compasses, dividers, protractors, triangles and other drafting devices.

And finally, they sometimes have to inspect rough sketches and other engineering data received from civil engineers to insure that they conform to layout concepts.

Like many other jobs, civil draftsmen must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Detroit include:

  • Architectural Drafter. Prepare detailed drawings of architectural designs and plans for buildings and structures according to specifications provided by architect.
  • CAD/CAM Specialist. Prepare detailed working diagrams of machinery and mechanical devices, including dimensions, and other engineering information.
  • Civil Engineering Technician. Apply theory and principles of civil engineering in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of structures and facilities under the direction of engineering staff or physical scientists.
  • Mechanical Engineer. Perform engineering duties in planning and designing tools, engines, and other mechanically functioning equipment. Oversee installation, operation, and repair of such equipment as centralized heat, gas, and steam systems.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Civil Draftsman Training

Henry Ford Community College - Dearborn, MI

Henry Ford Community College, 5101 Evergreen Rd, Dearborn, MI 48128-1495. Henry Ford Community College is a large college located in Dearborn, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,571 students. Henry Ford Community College has 2 areas of study related to Civil Draftsman. They are:

  • Architectural Technology/Technician, associate's degree which graduated 9 students in 2008.
  • CAD/CADD Drafting and/or Design Technology/Technician, less than one year and associate's degree which graduated twenty-nine and sixteen students respectively in 2008.

ITT Technical Institute-Troy - Troy, MI

ITT Technical Institute-Troy, 1522 E Big Beaver Rd, Troy, MI 48083-1905. ITT Technical Institute-Troy is a small school located in Troy, Michigan. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 1,350 students and an admission rate of 55%. ITT Technical Institute-Troy has an associate's degree program in CAD/CADD Drafting and/or Design Technology/Technician which graduated twenty-eight students in 2008.

ITT Technical Institute-Canton - Canton, MI

ITT Technical Institute-Canton, 1905 S. Haggerty Rd, Canton, MI 48188-2025. ITT Technical Institute-Canton is a small school located in Canton, Michigan. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 1,113 students and an admission rate of 46%. ITT Technical Institute-Canton has an associate's degree program in CAD/CADD Drafting and/or Design Technology/Technician which graduated thirty-nine students in 2008.

Eastern Michigan University - Ypsilanti, MI

Eastern Michigan University, , Ypsilanti, MI 48197. Eastern Michigan University is a large university located in Ypsilanti, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 22,137 students and an admission rate of 75%. Eastern Michigan University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in CAD/CADD Drafting and/or Design Technology/Technician which graduated six and fifteen students respectively in 2008.

Schoolcraft College - Livonia, MI

Schoolcraft College, 18600 Haggerty Road, Livonia, MI 48152-2696. Schoolcraft College is a large college located in Livonia, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 12,560 students. Schoolcraft College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Drafting and Design Technology/Technician which graduated five and seven students respectively in 2008.

Washtenaw Community College - Ann Arbor, MI

Washtenaw Community College, 4800 E Huron River Dr, Ann Arbor, MI 48105-4800. Washtenaw Community College is a large college located in Ann Arbor, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 12,906 students. Washtenaw Community College has 3 areas of study related to Civil Draftsman. They are:

  • Architectural Technology/Technician, less than one year which graduated 3 students in 2008.
  • CAD/CADD Drafting and/or Design Technology/Technician, less than one year and associate's degree which graduated ten and two students respectively in 2008.
  • Architectural Drafting and Architectural CAD/CADD, associate's degree which graduated 7 students in 2008.

Baker College of Auburn Hills - Auburn Hills, MI

Baker College of Auburn Hills, 1500 University Dr, Auburn Hills, MI 48326-2642. Baker College of Auburn Hills is a small college located in Auburn Hills, Michigan. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 3,848 students. Baker College of Auburn Hills has less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree programs in Architectural Drafting and Architectural CAD/CADD which graduated zero, zero, and five students respectively in 2008.

Wayne County Community College District - Detroit, MI

Wayne County Community College District, 801 W Fort St, Detroit, MI 48226. Wayne County Community College District is a large college located in Detroit, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 21,540 students. Wayne County Community College District has an associate's degree program in Drafting and Design Technology/Technician which graduated one student in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Planning and Scheduling Professional: The PSP certification is to recognize specialists who meet a demanding set of planning and scheduling criteria by a rigorous examination, experience, education and ethical qualificaion.

For more information, see the AACE International (Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering through total cost management) website.

Certified Transfer Station Technical Associate: This certification was developed to address the increased interest in transfer stations and provide transfer station managers and others the opportunity to learn more about transfer station design and operation.

For more information, see the Solid Waste Association of North America website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Detroit, Michigan

Detroit, Michigan
Detroit, Michigan photo by Durova

Detroit is located in Wayne County, Michigan. It has a population of over 912,062, which has shrunk by 4.1% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Detroit, 86, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Detroit are priced at $108,900 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, eighty-five new homes were built in Detroit, down from one hundred fifty-four the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Detroit are health care, educational services, and transportation equipment. For men, it is transportation equipment, construction, and administrative and support and waste management services. The average commute to work is about 28 minutes. More than 11.0% of Detroit residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 4.2%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Detroit is 27.0%, which is greater than Michigan's average of 14.3%.

The percentage of Detroit residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 37.7%, is less than both the national and state average. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Detroit is home to the Memorial Park Marina and the Detroit Golf Club as well as Chene Park and Mallett Playground. Visitors to Detroit can choose from Corktown Inn, Clark's Motel and Days Inn of Downtown Detroit for temporary stays in the area.