Civil Engineering for me is a simple application of Newton’s laws of motion in terms of making sure things don’t move when they are not supposed to and do move without collapsing when they are supposed to. I like CE because it’s a transition of these simplest concepts of motion into one of the most essential components of human civilization. The part that deals with the static part of Civil will be design of buildings, dams, bridges and roads. But all of these also have a non-static component as they experience motion due to large forces that might cause them to move like earthquakes, wind, floods, air dynamics etc.
My favorite part of Civil Engineering is the one that combines the moving design of structures with the ‘non-moving’ design. Especially in California, earthquake design requirement is one of the biggest factors in determining the final design of a building, and this takes into consideration multiple possible outcomes of a building’s response during an earthquake. My research mentor Professor Trifunac has worked my different ways of analyzing this response using simulations that sometimes can even start with a simple spring. One of the other components that is interesting to me about earthquake engineering is how much of computer programming it involves when it comes to analyzing the structure and performing simulations, it is this complexity that makes this part of Civil interesting for me.