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Where to Get a Construction Education

Find the Right Construction School to Start Your Career

Looking for a career with staying power? Jobs in the trades are in high demand—and are expected to keep growing. The construction field offers anyone interested in a skilled trade a huge range of possible career paths. 

While plenty of companies offer on-the-job training, the highest paid positions in the industry require some level of education. To help you enter the field, we rounded up the top three schools in your region to get a construction education and kick-start a career you’ll be proud of.  

Top Construction Degrees to Pursue

You’ll find a long list of possible careers within this industry, each focusing on a different aspect or specialty. Some of the most popular construction degrees are:

  • Construction Project Management: Handling the planning, budgeting and supervisory aspects of a construction project.
  • Architecture: Designing and planning various types of construction projects.
  • Carpentry: Constructing, repairing and installing building frameworks and other structures.
  • Mechanical Engineering: Designing and constructing machinery used inside buildings, such as elevators, escalators, air-conditioning systems, electric generators and conveyor systems.
  • Industrial Technology: Creating or optimizing manufacturing systems for better efficiency.
  • Surveying: Providing boundary line and terrain data to prepare sites for construction.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Construction Degree?

You can pursue an education in construction by earning a certificate, an Associate’s degree or a Bachelor of Science. 

Certificate Program: Typically completed within 6-12 months.

Associate’s Degree: Typically completed within 2 years.

Bachelor of Science Degree: Typically completed within 4 years.

How Much Does a Construction Degree Cost?

The cost of your construction education will depend on the school you choose, as well as the type of program you’re pursuing. These are rough estimates, so always research the exact program tuition at the schools you’re considering.

Type of Construction Degree Program
Average Cost
Certificate Program: $1,330-$9,000
Associate’s Degree: $9,289-$13,585 per year
Bachelors of Science: $9,970-$25,620 per year

*Source: Student Debt Relief

Keep in mind that there are scholarships available for students interested in construction. Check with the schools you’re considering and with industry organizations like the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) and the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI).

Where to Get a Construction Education Across the Country

There are great construction programs all over the country. Choose your region to find the top three schools in your neck of the woods.

East | Mid-West | South | West

New England Skyline

Construction Schools in the East

SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry

SUNY ESF has created a program that equips students with the skills needed to excel as a construction manager, along with a background in sustainable construction practices that are increasingly in demand. Their concentration on Wood Products Engineering also prepares graduates to work in the building materials industry—which is growing just as rapidly as the construction field itself.

Location: Syracuse, NY
Average Tuition: $18,079 per year
Degree Type: Bachelors of Science
Program Length: 4 years
Construction Specialties Offered:
  • Construction Management
  • Wood Products Engineering
  • Asbestos Mitigation

School Highlights:

  • Prepares graduates to take the LEED AP exam.
  • Cutting-edge coursework in green construction topics.
  • All graduates take the first step to becoming a Certified Professional Constructor by passing the Associate Constructor Level 1 Exam.

SUNY ESF Logo"Our program stands out due to the incredible passion our students have for Sustainable Construction Management. Whether it is winning the DOE Race to Zero competition, or working in collaboration with the architects and engineers on refugee housing in our community, we have students that are partnering to build a sustainable future for us all!"

Paul Crovella | Assistant Professor and Construction Management Coordinator, SUNY ESF

Central Connecticut State University

The Manufacturing and Construction Department at Central Connecticut State prepares students for careers in construction’s fastest growing fields. Their programs provide graduates with both the technical expertise and managerial know-how to find long-term success in any specialty they pursue.

Location: New Britain, CT
Average Tuition: $14,852 per year
Degree Types: Bachelor of Science or Certificate Program
Program Length: 4 years (B.S.) or 1 year (certificate)
Specialties Offered:
  • Construction Management
  • Industrial Technology
  • Robotics and Mechatronics Engineering Technology
  • Environmental and Occupational Safety
  • Lean Manufacturing and Six Sigma
  • Supply Chain Logistics

School Highlights:

  • Hands-on experience with key industry technologies.
  • Networking opportunities with major regional construction firms.
  • Four post-baccalaureate certificate programs for continuing education. 

Jefferson University

Students at the College of Architecture and the Built Environment at Jefferson collaborate across construction specialties throughout their education, leaving them with a well-rounded understanding of the field. The school also partners with businesses and organizations all over the city to give students first-hand experience. 

Location: Philadelphia, PA
Average Tuition: $28,596 per year
Degree Type: Bachelor of Science
Program Length: 4 years
Construction Specialties Offered:
  • Landscape Architecture
  • Construction Management
  • Architectural Studies

School Highlights:

  • Classes taught by industry professionals.
  • Emphasis on practical, hands-on coursework.
  • Opportunities to study abroad in Asia, Europe and Australia.

Choose another region

Mid-West Landscape

Best Construction Programs in the Mid-West

Indiana State University 

Indiana State’s Department of Built Environment is an internationally recognized leader in construction education. You’ll gain a well-rounded training in your chosen specialty, along with an emphasis on safety practices that will prepare you for leadership roles as you move forward in your career.

Location: Terra Haute, IN
Average Tuition: $28,596 per year
Degree Type: Bachelor of Science
Program Length: 4 years
Construction Specialties Offered:
  • Architectural Engineering Technology
  • Construction Management
  • Interior Architecture Design
  • Safety Management
  • Mechanical Engineering Technology

School Highlights:

  • Classes taught by industry professionals.
  • Most students find a job within 1-3 months of graduation.
  • Program internships frequently lead to full-time jobs with major firms.

Minnesota State University – Mankato

At the College of Science, Engineering and Technology you can earn a degree in some of the most in-demand specialties in the construction field. With a focus on mentoring and real-world learning, students at Minnesota State Mankato enter the workforce with the experience and connections to forge a successful career.

Location: Mankato, MN
Average Tuition: $13,812 per year
Degree Type: Bachelor of Science
Program Length: 4 years
Construction Specialties Offered:
  • Construction Management
  • Integrated Engineering
  • Civil and Mechanical Engineering

School Highlights:

  • Online degree options available.
  • Prepares graduates for both commercial and residential work.
  • Students paired with industry professionals for mentoring throughout their college career.

University of Central Missouri

Graduates of UCM’s Construction Management program have planned and overseen multi-million dollar projects, including stadiums and hospitals. Their hard-working faculty, small class sizes and networking opportunities help students enter the workforce quickly after graduation.

Location: Warrensburg, MO
Average Tuition: $13,567
Degree Type: Bachelors of Science in Construction Management
Program Length: 4 years
Construction Management Coursework Examples:
  • Project Estimation
  • Computer-Based Project Control
  • Surveying and Layout
  • Heavy Construction Methods
  • Applied Civil Design and Drafting
  • Industrial Management

School Highlights:

  • Typical class size is less than 20 students.
  • Most students find a full-time job within 2 months of graduation.
  • Multiple yearly networking opportunities through the Student Organization of Construction Managers.

Choose another region

Southern Landscape

Top Construction Schools in the South

University of Louisiana – Monroe

With a degree in Construction Management from ULM, you’ll be prepared for a career managing a range of construction projects, from bridges and highways to residential neighborhoods. The university is considered one of the best in the South while remaining affordable and fostering close student-faculty connections.

Location: Monroe, LA
Average Tuition: $9,145 per year
Degree Type: Bachelor of Science in Construction Management
Program Length: 4 years
Construction Management Coursework Examples:
  • Construction Techniques
  • Architectural Drafting
  • Estimates
  • Electrical Service and Installation
  • Construction Surveying
  • Mechanical Systems of Buildings

School Highlights:

  • $10,000 in construction scholarships awarded each year.
  • One of the most affordable construction schools in the U.S.
  • 100 percent of graduates find a job within the construction field.

Northern Kentucky University

Northern Kentucky University offers students a wealth of hands-on experience in each program. After graduation, you’ll have the practical skills to quickly find full-time work and the connections to advance quickly in your field.

Location: Highland Heights, KY
Average Tuition: $8,910 per year
Degree Type: Bachelor of Science or Associates
Program Length: 4 years (B.S.) or 2 years (AAS)
Construction Specialties Offered:
  • Construction Management
  • Construction Technology

School Highlights:

  • Multiple field-specific scholarships available.
  • Most affordable four-year construction school in the South.
  • Two 300-hour internships for hands-on work experience.

Kennesaw State University

Kennesaw State’s College of Architecture and Construction Management combines training in the newest technologies with strong foundational skills to prepare students for a career with plenty of room for growth. And to kick-start that career, you can take advantage of the university’s  job placement advisory board.

Location: Kennesaw, GA
Average Tuition: $17,441 per year
Degree Type: Bachelor of Science or Certificate Program
Program Length: 4 years (B.S.) or 1 year (Certificate)
Construction Specialties Offered:
  • Construction Management
  • Facilities Management
  • Heavy Construction
  • Specialty Construction
  • Land Development
  • Residential Construction

School Highlights:

  • Training in cutting-edge industry technology.
  • Ranked one of the U.S.’s top “up-and-coming’ universities.
  • 10 program-specific scholarships available through the school.

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West Coast Landscape

Best Choices for a Construction Education in the West

California State University – Sacramento

At the College of Engineering and Computer Sciences, you can prepare yourself for a career in three of the fastest-growing areas in construction. You’ll also benefit from the recently opened Student Success Center which provides a range of resources, from tutoring to job search assistance, to help their students thrive.

Location: Sacramento, CA
Average Tuition: $9,127 per year
Degree Type: Bachelor of Science
Program Length: 4 years
Construction Specialties Offered:
  • Construction Management
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering

School Highlights: 

  • Hands-on work experience before you graduate.
  • One of the most affordable colleges in the country.
  • Ranks 59 on PayScale’s list of graduate earning potential.

Sacramento Sate Logo  “Sacramento State’s Construction Management Program offers a hands-on education provided by practiced-orientated faculty with professional backgrounds in engineering, architecture, construction management, business, and law. Our students compete in academic competitions, bringing home over 65 trophies both regionally and nationally over the past 10 years. Employers seek out our graduates, having had 100 percent job placement for a very long time.”

Mikael Anderson | PE, Chair Department of Construction Mangement, California State University, Sacramento

North Dakota State University

At NDSU, you can earn your degree from a program started with the support of the Associated General Contractors of America. Their Construction Engineering program is the third oldest in the country and students benefit from the school’s long-established connections with industry leaders.

Location: Fargo, ND
Average Tuition: $14,581 per year
Degree Type: Bachelor of Science
Program Length: 4 years
Construction Specialties Offered:
  • Construction Engineering
  • Construction Management

School Highlights:

  • One of the school’s most popular programs.
  • Senior capstone project provides hands-on design and technology experience.
  • Combines engineering and construction coursework for a well-rounded education.

NDSU Logo“Through our hands-on learning style and partnerships with industry leaders we are able to equip our students with skills that make them highly-successful in their careers. We’re proud of the fact that our graduates are in high demand around the country and around the world.”

Jerry Gao | Chair, Department of Construction Management and Engineering, NDSU

Arizona State University – Tempe

At ASU Tempe’s College of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, students learn both practical skills and how to apply them in ways that sustain human and environmental health and safety. Their construction programs are recognized as some of the top in the nation and they ensure students have the training necessary to hit the ground running after graduation. 

Location: Tempe, AZ
Average Tuition: $13,007 per year
Degree Type: Bachelor of Science
Program Length: 4 years
Construction Specialties Offered:
  • Construction Management
  • Civil Engineering
  • Construction Engineering
  • Environmental Engineering

School Highlights:

  • 25 percent of graduates go on to own their own company.
  • Awards the most scholarship money of any school in the country.
  • Two internships provide experience with both management and field work.

Choose another region

School’s in for Construction

No matter which school you choose, pursuing an education in the construction field will open the door to a stable career with plenty of growth potential. Think we left a great school off our list? Comment and let us know!

Not sure construction is the right trade for you? Learn about other skilled jobs in high demand or visit the Trades & Construction section of our blog.

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