Soldiers from the 150th and 160th Engineer Companies, New Jersey Army National Guard, employed D7 bulldozers to perform beach replenishment operations in the devastated Holgate section of Long Beach Island, NJ following Superstorm Sandy.
Job training for Soldiers in the Engineer career field consists of ten weeks of Basic Combat Training (BCT) plus 6 or more weeks of Advanced Individual Training (AIT) depending on your specialty. Training will range from basic construction, engineering and electrical principles to more specialized skills, such as masonry, plumbing and water purification, surveying, and operating heavy construction equipment.
The skills you learn in the Engineer career field will prepare you for practically any position in the fields of commercial and residential construction, electrical engineering, building inspection or building engineering. You can also consider a future in surveying, architecture, paving and road construction.
Military Occupational Specialties
12B Combat Engineer
Combat Engineers provide the combination of combat ability and building skills necessary for tackling rough terrain in combat situations. Engineers build roads or trails, assemble bridges, and construct shelters, bunkers and gun emplacements, allowing armored and infantry divisions to advance. They also place and detonate explosives and oversee the safe removal of mines.
Army and National Guard buildings and equipment all require pipe systems for water, steam, gas and waste. Plumbers are responsible for installing and repairing plumbing and pipe systems. Plumbers read drawings and blueprints, plan pipe system layouts, and install pipes, fixtures and connectors, in addition to troubleshooting, testing and calibrating hydraulic and pneumatic systems.
12N Horizontal Construction Engineer
The Guard takes part in hundreds of construction projects, including airfields, roads, dams and buildings, which require moving tons of earth and building materials or producing concrete and asphalt. Horizontal Construction Engineers use bulldozers, cranes, graders and other heavy equipment such as scoop loaders, power shovels and towed or self-propelled scrapers to complete these kinds of projects and assist in performance of combat engineer missions.
12R Interior Electrician
Interior Electricians are responsible for installing and repairing electrical wiring systems in offices, hospitals, repair shops, hangars and other Army and Guard buildings. Electricians install and maintain all electrical components from transformers and service panels to circuit breakers, switches and power outlets. They also repair and replace faulty wiring and lighting fixtures.
12W Carpentry and Masonry Specialist
As a part of the engineering corps, Carpentry and Masonry Specialists perform general heavy carpentry, structural steel and masonry duties. From assisting in building layout and concrete foundations to framing, flooring, walls and roofing structures, Carpentry and Masonry Specialists erect buildings and structures from the ground up. They also handle repairs to all types of structures and may assist in combat engineer missions.
12Y Geospatial Engineer
Geospatial engineers are responsible for using geographic data that supports military/civilian operations for Disaster Relief and Homeland Security. They collect, analyze and distribute geospatial information to represent the terrain and its possible effects.
History of the Corps of Engineers
George Washington appointed the first engineer officers of the Army on June 16, 1775, during the American Revolution, and engineers have served in combat in all subsequent American wars. The Army established the Corps of Engineers as a separate, permanent branch on March 16, 1802, and gave the engineers responsibility for founding and operating the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.
Since then the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has responded to changing defense requirements and played an integral part in the development of the country. Throughout the 19th century, the Corps built coastal fortifications, surveyed roads and canals, eliminated navigational hazards, explored and mapped the Western frontier, and constructed buildings and monuments in the Nation’s capital.
From the beginning, many politicians wanted the Corps to contribute to both military construction and works "of a civil nature." Throughout the 19th century, the Corps supervised the construction of coastal fortifications and mapped much of the American West with the Corps of Topographical Engineers, which enjoyed a separate existence for 25 years (1838-1863). The Corps of Engineers also constructed lighthouses, helped develop jetties and piers for harbors, and carefully mapped the navigation channels.
In the 20th century, the Corps became the lead federal flood control agency and significantly expanded its civil works activities, becoming among other things a major provider of hydroelectric energy and the country’s leading provider of recreation. Its role in responding to natural disasters also grew dramatically.
Assigned the military construction mission in 1941, the Corps built facilities at home and abroad to support the U.S. Army and Air Force. During the Cold War, Army engineers managed construction programs for America’s allies, including a massive effort in Saudi Arabia. In addition, the Corps of Engineers also completed large construction programs for federal agencies such as NASA and the postal service.. The Corps also maintains a rigorous research and development program in support of its water resources, construction, and military activities.
In the late 1960s, the Corps became a leading environmental preservation and restoration agency. It now carries out natural and cultural resource management programs at its water resources projects and regulates activities in the Nation’s wetlands. In addition, the Corps assists the military services in environmental management and restoration at former and current military installations.
When the Cold War ended, the Corps was poised to support the Army and the Nation in the new era. Army engineers supported 9/11 recovery efforts and currently play an important international role in the rapidly evolving Global War on Terrorism, including reconstruction in Iraq and Afghanistan. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers stands ready to support the country’s military and water resources needs in the 21st century as it has done during its more than two centuries of service.