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What Does it Take to Be a Mining or Geological Engineer?

Example of Mining or Geological Engineer Job Conduct sub-surface surveys to identify the characteristics of potential land or mining development sites. May specify the ground support systems, processes and equipment for safe, economical, and environmentally sound extraction or underground construction activities. May inspect areas for unsafe geological conditions, equipment, and working conditions. May design, implement, and coordinate mine safety programs.

Daily Life Of a Mining or Geological Engineer

  • Select or develop mineral location, extraction, and production methods, based on factors such as safety, cost, and deposit characteristics.
  • Monitor mine production rates to assess operational effectiveness.
  • Supervise, train, and evaluate technicians, technologists, survey personnel, engineers, scientists or other mine personnel.
  • Evaluate data to develop new mining products, equipment, or processes.
  • Prepare schedules, reports, and estimates of the costs involved in developing and operating mines.
  • Implement and coordinate mine safety programs, including the design and maintenance of protective and rescue equipment and safety devices.

What Every Mining or Geological Engineer Should Know

Below is a list of the skills most Mining and Geological Engineers say are important on the job.

Complex Problem Solving: Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Other Mining or Geological Engineer Job Titles

  • Ore Dressing Engineer
  • Mine Safety Manager
  • Mine Safety Engineer
  • Mine Exploration Engineer
  • Mine Engineer

Is There Job Demand for Mining and Geological Engineers?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 7,300 jobs in the United States for Mining or Geological Engineer. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 8.2% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 600 new jobs for Mining or Geological Engineer by 2026. There will be an estimated 600 positions for Mining or Geological Engineer per year.


The states with the most job growth for Mining or Geological Engineer are North Dakota, Colorado, and Tennessee. Watch out if you plan on working in Kentucky, Utah, or Wyoming. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Mining or Geological Engineer Salary

Mining and Geological Engineers make between $54,550 and $151,030 a year.


Mining and Geological Engineers who work in California, New Mexico, or Florida, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Mining and Geological Engineers in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $97,670
Alaska $112,110
Arizona $81,150
California $123,060
Colorado $108,130
Florida $113,200
Idaho $74,990
Illinois $92,530
Indiana $72,840
Kentucky $94,810
Maryland $76,360
Michigan $78,700
Minnesota $101,710
Nevada $85,640
New Mexico $140,130
New York $90,240
North Dakota $80,350
Ohio $89,260
Oregon $76,810
Pennsylvania $90,510
Utah $93,580
Washington $99,490
West Virginia $76,050
Wyoming $93,990

What Tools & Technology do Mining and Geological Engineers Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Mining and Geological Engineers may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Access
  • Microsoft Project
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Statistical software
  • Oracle Primavera Systems
  • Carlson SurvCADD
  • Maptek Vulcan
  • MineSight
  • Trimble Geomatics Office
  • Gemcom Surpac

Becoming a Mining or Geological Engineer

Individuals working as a Mining or Geological Engineer have obtained the following education levels:


How many years of work experience do I need?


Where Mining and Geological Engineers Are Employed


The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.


You May Also Be Interested In…

Those interested in being a Mining or Geological Engineer may also be interested in:


Image Credit: Zina Deretsky, National Science Foundation via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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