Your degree in Geological Engineering

While studying Geological Engineering, you're learning about the earth’s physical structure and its mechanics as it relates to engineering design. You’ll develop important skills to design sustainable infrastructure projects, support natural resource development and develop programs to protect the environment.

These skills may include:

  • Conducting scientific research and quantitative analyses for large energy and infrastructure projects
  • Application of rock mechanics, soil mechanics, and hydrogeology principles in designing foundations for construction, forestry, civil, and other engineering activities
  • Designing and carrying out geotechnical site investigations to assess built structures including tunnels, highways, pipelines, reservoirs, and mines
  • Conducting theoretical studies to determine impact of natural hazards on infrastructures and proposing remediation plans
  • Analysis of groundwater flow systems to assess risk of contamination and providing recommendations for wastewater treatment strategies
  • Usage of advanced geological exploration tools, specialized lab equipment and software such as Rocscience and ArcGIS
  • Collection and interpretation of geophysical data to identify and assess environmental risk of a project and developing appropriate control measures

Explore career possibilities

Career opportunities vary widely across a range of fields including civil design, environmental protection and control, mineral and energy exploration, pipeline development and planning, public utilities, water resource management, natural hazard mitigation, and others.

There are many career paths that can combine your academics, skills, and experience with your different interests. See the job titles below for ideas, but note that some career options may require further education or training.

Visit the National Occupational Classification website to research basic requirements and responsibilities of jobs in your field.


Civil engineer

Construction project engineer

Environmental consultant

Excavation designer

Exploration geologist

Geodetic engineer

Geological engineer

Geological prospecting technologist

Geomatics engineer

Geophysical engineer

Geospatial software developer

Geotechnical engineer

Groundwater resource project manager

Hydrogeological engineer

Hydrology field program manager

Infrastructure planning engineer

Land surveyor

Mine planning engineer

Mining engineer

Municipal planner

Oil and gas production engineer

Open pit mine engineer

Petrography engineer

Petroleum reservoir engineer

Pipeline integrity engineer

Remediation specialist

Research and development engineer

Rock sciences engineer or Rock mechanics engineer

Senior foundation engineer

Site cavern engineer

Soil engineer

Structural engineer

Tunnel engineer

Water resource engineer

Make the most of your program

Your experiences will open doors to new opportunities and help clarify understanding of your values and interests.

GEOROX, UBC Geological Engineering Undergraduate Club
Participate in social events, the annual alumni dinner, field trips, and access peer academic support services.

The Canadian Geotechnical Society, UBC Student Chapter

Meet like-minded peers, attend lectures and workshops, and network with geotechnical professionals.

UBC BC Water and Waste Association - Student Chapter
Connect with water industry professionals and attend WEST to learn about water issues and the latest water developments.

UBC Canadian Society for Civil Engineering, Student Chapter
Meet with industry members through guest lectures, facility and site tours, and professional development workshops.

Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum, UBC Student Chapter
Network with industry professionals and attend guest lectures to learn about the mining field and potential career paths.

UBC Concrete Toboggan
Design, construct, and race a toboggan at the Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race.

UBC Earthquake Engineering Research Institute Seismic Design Team
Apply complex theories of seismic design to a hands-on project and compete in the annual Seismic Design Competition.

UBC Concrete Canoe
Design, fabricate and race a 20-foot long canoe made of concrete and participate in an annual competition.

UBC Steel Bridge
Apply your technical knowledge to a unique steel design challenge and make connections with industry members.

Join a multidisciplinary team to tackle global sustainability issues through technology.

Mineral Deposit Research Unit
Check out courses and events to learn more about mineral deposits and exploration methods.

UBC Sustainability research opportunities
Participate in research and project-based roles to advance sustainability at UBC and in the region.

AMS Sustainability
Access resources and funding of up to $15,000 to support your sustainability-related initiative or project.

Departmental research opportunities
Reach out directly to faculty members to ask about potential research positions.

UBC Engineering Co-op
Gain work experience in geological engineering between study terms.

Engineering job board
Check out engineering employment opportunities.

Volunteer at the GeoConvention
Network with top industry professionals during the summer term and hear guest speakers at technical talks.

BC MEND Metal Leaching and Acid Rock Drainage Workshop
Learn about the practices and technologies used to address ML/ARD issues at this annual technical forum held in December.

Make connections

Employers often hire people they know, so help them get to know you! You can build your network through clubs, classes, informational interviews, and more. There are so many ways to make connections and find mentors.

The professional associations below are also great resources for meeting people, learning about specific industries, and exploring job and volunteer opportunities. Most have reduced membership rates for students and new grads.

Connect with alumni on LinkedIn

More information

From your Science degree, you’ll develop skills and experiences that can translate into many career paths. Check out other things you can do with your Applied Science degree.