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Posted: 2/16/2012 3:35:18 PM EDT
I'll be going in August for a BS in construction management. Anyone here have any experience with it or think it would be a good major? I'm also thinking about a minor in accounting or business, any thoughts on that?

My real goal is to start my own contracting business. I grew up around the construction trades, but I have no clue about the day to day operations of running a company.

Thanks guys!
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:37:23 PM EDT
No.

Do the little bit of extra work and earn an actual 4-yr civil engineering or civil engineering technology degree.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:37:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/16/2012 3:38:48 PM EDT by rfm05]
Hah. I used to work in the construction industry in estimation/project management. I switched to an aviation related field out of necessity and a less than positive outlook on the future of the construction industry for the next several years. I would whole heartedly advise you to look into another field in this economic debacle.

ETA- Engineering/hard sciences are always advisable
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:39:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By rfm05:
Hah. I used to work in the construction industry in estimation/project management. I switched to an aviation related field out of necessity and a less than positive outlook on the future of the construction industry for the next several years. I would whole heartedly advise you to look into another field in this economic debacle.

Sounds like you took a downgrade, aviation is one of the bleakest industries I know of right now.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:40:39 PM EDT
I would whole heartedly advise you to look into another field in this economic debacle.
At this point I agree.

Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:40:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SuperSixOne:

Originally Posted By rfm05:
Hah. I used to work in the construction industry in estimation/project management. I switched to an aviation related field out of necessity and a less than positive outlook on the future of the construction industry for the next several years. I would whole heartedly advise you to look into another field in this economic debacle.

Sounds like you took a downgrade, aviation is one of the bleakest industries I know of right now.
Personally, I wouldn't call air traffic control a downgrade.

Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:41:27 PM EDT
We call ours Construction Science at A&M, what would you like to know?

Ignore the guy who says to get a civil engineering degree. We make more money in the long run anyway.

This economy does suck for us, though, I will agree. Tough times out there right now.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:43:27 PM EDT
Originally Posted By rfm05:
Hah. I used to work in the construction industry in estimation/project management. I switched to an aviation related field out of necessity and a less than positive outlook on the future of the construction industry for the next several years. I would whole heartedly advise you to look into another field in this economic debacle.

ETA- Engineering/hard sciences are always advisable


Yeah, this economy certainly has me worried. I wonder if it will turn around in 4 or 5 years, I doubt it though.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:43:55 PM EDT
Having been in the electrical trade for 20 years, 3 years as a project manager/estimator, I will tell you that the most effective people as construction managers, whatever the trade, or general contractors, have been folks that came up through the trade and eventually worked their way into the position. I would recommend an engineering or business degree, then get into a trade or work as an engineer with a large general contractor. If I had it all to do over again, I'd be a dentist. PM me if you like.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:44:10 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/16/2012 3:47:09 PM EDT by maddmatt]
Several of the large companies in this area requiring now. I am current enrolled, but am primary using it as a stepping stone into civil engineering.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:46:16 PM EDT
There is no construction to manage
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:46:49 PM EDT
I have construction management degree, while I think it is a good major my kid won't be majoring in it. Following the 2008 crashing the industry is just awful. There is no loyalty anymore, you'll work a salaried position at 50-60HRS a week and nothing in return other than a paycheck (and I don't mean a bonus, just getting appreciation for hard work is tough). I love the construction and everything that goes into it but companies are willing to do whatever is necessary to keep the few at the top happy. I'm looking at leaving the field and moving to a facilities manager/engineering role.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:48:31 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Joker117:
Originally Posted By rfm05:
Hah. I used to work in the construction industry in estimation/project management. I switched to an aviation related field out of necessity and a less than positive outlook on the future of the construction industry for the next several years. I would whole heartedly advise you to look into another field in this economic debacle.

ETA- Engineering/hard sciences are always advisable


Yeah, this economy certainly has me worried. I wonder if it will turn around in 4 or 5 years, I doubt it though.

Don't get me wrong, I loved my job and working in the industry, but times are tough and it's hard to get your foot in the door.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:52:01 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Joker117:
Originally Posted By rfm05:
Hah. I used to work in the construction industry in estimation/project management. I switched to an aviation related field out of necessity and a less than positive outlook on the future of the construction industry for the next several years. I would whole heartedly advise you to look into another field in this economic debacle.

ETA- Engineering/hard sciences are always advisable


Yeah, this economy certainly has me worried. I wonder if it will turn around in 4 or 5 years, I doubt it though.
Married? Kids?

If you're willing to move, there is work in places like Wyoming and North Dakota or over seas.

Link Posted: 2/16/2012 3:52:50 PM EDT
I work for a CM firm. At least in my area the construction industry is not as badly fucked. We're doing a lot of hiring but because turnover is a bitch. Not many can truly handle the demands of the job.

My advice if you go for a CM degree is to specialize in BIM; Autodesk Revit and plain old AutoCAD. Do extra work on the side and take training courses above and beyond to become proficient. It'll make you more valuable in the long run as BIM becomes the industry standard for Architects and CM's.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 4:07:05 PM EDT
Originally Posted By alc1343:

Originally Posted By Joker117:
Originally Posted By rfm05:
Hah. I used to work in the construction industry in estimation/project management. I switched to an aviation related field out of necessity and a less than positive outlook on the future of the construction industry for the next several years. I would whole heartedly advise you to look into another field in this economic debacle.

ETA- Engineering/hard sciences are always advisable


Yeah, this economy certainly has me worried. I wonder if it will turn around in 4 or 5 years, I doubt it though.
Married? Kids?

If you're willing to move, there is work in places like Wyoming and North Dakota or over seas.



21 and single with 3 years of residential carpentry and concrete under my belt. The contracting company I work for has definitly taken a hit by this recession, but I'm doing ok. $13 an hour and 60 hour weeks straight out of high school is better than most here.

For the people saying go for an engineering degree, what's the differnce between engineering technology and mechanical engineering technology? It seems like every damn school has a different name for everything. Here's a link to the state university I'm attending: http://technology.indstate.edu/degrees/
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 4:47:24 PM EDT
Originally Posted By bassackwards:
There is no construction to manage


-this

Link Posted: 2/16/2012 5:08:51 PM EDT
For the most part all Engineering Tech degrees are going to be similar in my experiences, they're going to focus on more of the hands on "doing" things and less on the theory/math/calc/physics as to why it works and calculations. The general eng tech will be broader which might be good if you're not sure what your interest is yet, mech tech is going to focus more on mechanical related items....machine design, fabrication/machining, basic circuits and controls, same concept for similar degrees....civil tech, industrial tech etc.

If you are willing to do the 5 years it takes for the full engineering degree(don't believe them when they say 4) and are good at math/physics(or willing to put in the work to get by) I would recommend the full engineering degree. It will make getting a job easier, not because an engineering tech is less capable in getting things done(I've often found it to be the opposite) but the perception by companies is often that the full engineering degree is worth more. Once you get into a company and prove your worth hopefully they'll judge you more on performance and not what the diploma says, but it will often take longer to get them to look past the diploma title.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 5:33:30 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Joker117:
I'll be going in August for a BS in construction management. Anyone here have any experience with it or think it would be a good major? I'm also thinking about a minor in accounting or business, any thoughts on that?

My real goal is to start my own contracting business. I grew up around the construction trades, but I have no clue about the day to day operations of running a company.

Thanks guys!

Accounting possibly if numbers are your thing.

Business, no, Business degrees are more common than ugly dogs.

Construction Managment, wtf are you smoking? The construction industry has cratered and isnt coming back anytime soon since the market wasn't allowed to correct itself and real estate prices are still artificially inflated.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 6:12:19 PM EDT
Originally Posted By alc1343:
We call ours Construction Science at A&M, what would you like to know?

Ignore the guy who says to get a civil engineering degree. We make more money in the long run anyway.

This economy does suck for us, though, I will agree. Tough times out there right now.


Ears getting dry?

Times are still good for me. I guess the do do bird ain't going anywhere huh?

Link Posted: 2/16/2012 6:14:24 PM EDT
Fantastic Major. I have 3 friends with that degree. They are doing fantastic even in this shithole Obama economy
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 6:19:15 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/16/2012 6:19:41 PM EDT by tileguy1]
Not anymore, see my name, doesn't apply as of 1-1/2 years ago. After 14 good years, bottom dropped out, most expensive and senior guy there, me, gets axed.
That's okay, I found a job with one of our vendors here, get to play with gun type stuff all day and get paid for it. A little less pay, though the improvement in hours and stress is great!
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 6:22:36 PM EDT
Originally Posted By rfm05:
Hah. I used to work in the construction industry in estimation/project management. I switched to an aviation related field out of necessity and a less than positive outlook on the future of the construction industry for the next several years. I would whole heartedly advise you to look into another field in this economic debacle.

ETA- Engineering/hard sciences are always advisable


Ha! My little brother did exactly the opposite but he was a few years ahead of you. He's did the mgmt thing for a while but got sick of building boxes for a bunch of assholes. He is now working 3/4 time for a residential construction company which is god but his boss doesn't hunt down work like he should. So, my brother picks up as many odd jobs as he can manage. He does okay and likes doing remodels over the big time commercial projects. I think he'd rather be flying planes.
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 6:24:32 PM EDT
If you want to manage the actual construction then get a Construction Management degree. If you want to manage the entire project then you are better off with an engineering degree. Either way, you are not going to start anywhere near the top in this market and you will have to put in the time and earn respect for a LONG time before anyone will give you a chance at running the show.

All the degree does is help you get your foot in the door. ...










Link Posted: 2/16/2012 6:27:20 PM EDT
It's a great degree if you find a good company to work for that won't take advantage of you. I am partial to smaller companies that have more of a family atmosphere, but I have heard of people being happy with larger companies.

While in school take internships at different companies every summer and try to do different things and be open to learning from everyone you come in contact with. Then when you get out of school start out in the field for a few years and then move into the office if that is what you want. The PM's that go directly to the office typically are not great project managers.

I don't know if this is what I will be doing forever, but right now it pays okay and I have proven myself enough that I am given quite a bit of freedom at the company I work for.




Link Posted: 2/16/2012 6:32:42 PM EDT
Don't know about your area, but I can tell you that the commercial construction industry in NYC is a VERY tough way to make a living. . . for ALL involved. . . Ridiculous stupid schedules, difficult conditions, unreasonable clients/owner's reps. . . and that's if/when you get a project. . .

Don't get me wrong, it can be an opportunity to learn patience, dealing with stress, etc. . . but not for the weak, that's for sure. . .
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 6:40:49 PM EDT
Oil and Gas is where you want to be....Trust me
Link Posted: 2/16/2012 8:47:27 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Joker117:
I'll be going in August for a BS in construction management. Anyone here have any experience with it or think it would be a good major? I'm also thinking about a minor in accounting or business, any thoughts on that?

My real goal is to start my own contracting business. I grew up around the construction trades, but I have no clue about the day to day operations of running a company.

Thanks guys!


IMO, you would be better served to develop a plan that puts you in some kind of code enforcement/inspection gig than running a crew. Money for projects is going to be a long while coming, but cities are desperate to find ways to bleed their citizens of money any way they can. Lot more potential for that kind of work to be successful for you, unfortunately. I know a construction manager, he ain't working.
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