Civil Engineer Corps community overview. The Navy is more than ships, submarines, and aircraft at sea. Hundreds of naval shore facilities worldwide-like small cities with hospitals, airfields, power plants, housing, stores, office buildings and much more-make up the fleet support establishment. Naval Officers in the Civil Engineer Corps (CEC) provide professional facilities engineering services and management at all Navy and Marine Corps facilities worldwide. The name "Civil Engineer Corps" does not refer solely to the discipline of Civil Engineering, but to a multitude of engineering and architectural disciplines.
While a small community of only 1250 officers, CEC officers are found all over the world in highly visible positions supervising skilled personnel while working on: construction projects, infrastructure repairs and maintenance, facility support contracts, real estate management, natural resource management, environmental planning and management, and many other facilities engineering areas. From the very beginning, CEC officers obtain engineering management and leadership experience far exceeding that offered by a private firm. As a junior CEC officer, you may work in any or all of the following three areas:
Contract Management. Although exact details differ from job to job, the basic task is to ensure that Navy construction projects are built safely, as designed, on time, and within budget. Tasks include ensuring that construction is in accordance with the project plans and specifications, resolving design problems, coordinating construction schedules with Navy operations, ensuring that payments correctly reflect progress, and managing the project budget. It's difficult to create a comprehensive list of everything that a construction manager may encounter. Anything that affects safety, quality, and the timely completion of the project is a concern for the construction contract manager. That includes not only technical problems, but contractual and business issues as well. In this job you will be working in the Facilities Engineering and Acquisition Division (FEAD) of Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC). About 30% of new CEC officers work as construction managers.
Facilities Management. CEC officers operate and maintain the complex facilities and utility systems at shore activities by managing a large and diverse work force of civilian and military personnel. We do many of the same things that facility managers do in every city, at every hospital, and on every college campus: power distribution, heating, air conditioning, water and wastewater, grounds maintenance, telecommunications, transportation and equipment, environmental issues, and facilities maintenance. We have many of the same concerns and encounter many of the same problems as our civilian counterparts. Public works touches every member of the Navy and Marine Corps team. Aviators, submariners, ship-drivers, SEALS, Marines, and civilian government employees all have public works concerns and it is our job to address them. Because of the inherently diverse nature of public works, CEC officers are found in a variety of jobs located all over the world. Some work in the planning and execution of various projects and others may work with the operating forces to help coordinate and prioritize public works concerns. About 40% of junior officers will fill these positions.
Expeditionary Engineering. Unlike public works and construction management, an expeditionary job is something unique to the Navy. About 30% of CEC junior officer jobs are expeditionary, but these jobs offer a chance to gain skills and experiences that cannot be found elsewhere. the majority of these jobs are with the Seabees. The Seabees are a force of highly skilled enlisted personnel, trained in both construction and defensive combat, under the leadership of CEC officers. At any given time, Seabees are deployed around the world to perform contingency construction, humanitarian assistance, and disaster relief. the Seabee's motto, "We Build, We Fight" sums it up. Seabees can be found in Naval Mobile Construction Battalions (NMCBs), Amphibious Construction Battalions (ACBs), or underwater Construction Teams (UCTs). Each of these units exemplifies the unique spririt of the Seabees, provides a different construction capability for the Navy, and presents unique leadership challenges for CEC officers. A new CEC officer will be expected to lead Seabees through the successful completion of any number of missions. Developing leadership skills is imperative in everything a CEC officer does and the leadership lessons and experience gained in the Seabees are particularly powerful.
Review these documents for additional information: