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What Does it Take to Be a Mining or Geological Engineer?

Example of Mining or Geological Engineer Job Conduct sub-surface surveys to identify the characteristics of potential land or mining development sites. May specify the ground support systems, processes and equipment for safe, economical, and environmentally sound extraction or underground construction activities. May inspect areas for unsafe geological conditions, equipment, and working conditions. May design, implement, and coordinate mine safety programs.

Life As a Mining or Geological Engineer: What Do They Do?

  • Prepare schedules, reports, and estimates of the costs involved in developing and operating mines.
  • Select or devise materials-handling methods and equipment to transport ore, waste materials, and mineral products efficiently and economically.
  • Monitor mine production rates to assess operational effectiveness.
  • Devise solutions to problems of land reclamation and water and air pollution, such as methods of storing excavated soil and returning exhausted mine sites to natural states.
  • Design, implement, and monitor the development of mines, facilities, systems, or equipment.
  • Conduct or direct mining experiments to test or prove research findings.

Mining or Geological Engineer Skills

These are the skills Mining and Geological Engineers say are the most useful in their careers:

Complex Problem Solving: Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Other Mining or Geological Engineer Job Titles

  • Safety Coordinator
  • Safety Analyst
  • Engineering Manager
  • Project Engineer
  • Planning Engineer

Job Outlook for Mining and Geological Engineers

There were about 7,300 jobs for Mining or Geological Engineer in 2016 (in the United States). New jobs are being produced at a rate of 8.2% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 600 new jobs for Mining or Geological Engineer by 2026. There will be an estimated 600 positions for Mining or Geological Engineer per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Mining and Geological Engineers in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Mining or Geological Engineer are North Dakota, Colorado, and Tennessee. Watch out if you plan on working in Kentucky, Utah, or Wyoming. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Mining or Geological Engineer Salary

The salary for Mining and Geological Engineers ranges between about $54,550 and $151,030 a year.

Salary Ranges for Mining and Geological Engineers

Mining and Geological Engineers who work in California, New Mexico, or Florida, make the highest salaries.

How much do Mining and Geological Engineers make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $97,670
Alaska $112,110
Arizona $81,150
California $123,060
Colorado $108,130
Florida $113,200
Idaho $74,990
Illinois $92,530
Indiana $72,840
Kentucky $94,810
Maryland $76,360
Michigan $78,700
Minnesota $101,710
Nevada $85,640
New Mexico $140,130
New York $90,240
North Dakota $80,350
Ohio $89,260
Oregon $76,810
Pennsylvania $90,510
Utah $93,580
Washington $99,490
West Virginia $76,050
Wyoming $93,990

What Tools do Mining and Geological Engineers Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Mining and Geological Engineers may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Access
  • Microsoft Project
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Statistical software
  • Oracle Primavera Systems
  • Carlson SurvCADD
  • Maptek Vulcan
  • MineSight
  • Trimble Geomatics Office
  • Gemcom Surpac

How to Become a Mining or Geological Engineer

Are there Mining and Geological Engineers education requirements?

Mining or Geological Engineer Degree Level

How many years of work experience do I need?

Mining or Geological Engineer Work Experience

Where Mining and Geological Engineers Are Employed

Mining or Geological Engineer Sectors

The table below shows the approximate number of Mining and Geological Engineers employed by various industries.

Mining or Geological Engineer Industries

You May Also Be Interested In…

Those thinking about becoming a Mining or Geological Engineer might also be interested in the following careers:


Image Credit: Zina Deretsky, National Science Foundation via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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