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College of Engineering and Computing


Civil and Environmental Engineering

Railroad Engineering Graduate Certificate

A new graduate-level railroad engineering certificate program will prepare graduates for successful careers in the rail industry. 

About the Program

As the railroad industry undergoes unprecedented growth and modernization, its workforce ages rapidly and rail companies scamper to fill positions, particularly in engineering and related technical fields. All major railroad companies, and companies that serve the railroad industry, are recruiting among college students and recent graduates who often have no railroad engineering education or background, because of the lack of railroad engineering academic programs in the USA.

A new graduate-level railroad engineering certificate program, offered through the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of South Carolina will better prepare graduates for successful careers in the rail industry and will give them a competitive edge in the hiring process. The curriculum was developed based on rail industry feedback related to sought-after skills and qualifications of new hires. 

The 12-credit hour program is offered online allowing traditional students, as well as working professionals from around the country, to enroll.

The program is designed to serve the following groups:

  • junior engineers already in the industry
  • undergraduate senior students in engineering or related fields
  • any level engineers interested in joining the railroad industry
  • any level engineers seeking professional development through continuing education

Curriculum/Courses

12-credit hours

 Students must take three credit hours from the following core courses list:

  • ECIV 580 Railway Infrastructure Planning and Design
  • ECIV 582 Railway Operations and Logistics

Students must take six credit hours of rail elective courses from the following list:

  • ECIV 588 Design of Railroad Bridges and Other Structures
  • ECIV 784 Dynamics of Railway Systems
  • ECIV 589 Capstone Design Rail Project
  • ECIV 790 Selected Topics in Civil Engineering
  • ECIV 797 Research in Civil Engineering

Students must take three credit hours of other elective courses from the following list:

  • ECIV 705 Deterministic Civil and Environmental Systems Engineering
  • ECIV 707 Management of Engineering Projects
  • ECIV 708 Risk Analysis of Engineering Applications
  • MGMT 718 Management of Human Resources

Admission Requirements

Applicants should hold a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in engineering, or be within 36 credit hours from completion of the degree requirements, from an accredited U.S. institution or an approved international institution.

  • A minimum GPA of 3.0 for the last 60 credit hours in a B.S. program is required for applicants who hold a B.S. degree.
  • A current GPA of 3.0 is required for all applicants who are within 36 credit hours from completion of the B.S. degree.
  • In lieu of GPA requirements applicants may provide documented significant work experience in a related field.
  • Applicants with other degrees and academic attainment are eligible to apply. The applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis, based on work experience.

You must apply to and be accepted by the USC Graduate School to participate in this certificate program.