Our Civil engineering scheme for graduates

Who you are

You’re a logical thinker who’s adept at finding creative solutions to challenging problems. Resourceful and hardworking, you’re comfortable managing your own time to ensure you get the job done. Using your strong interpersonal skills, you’re able to build relationships with colleagues, suppliers and customers. You're flexible and don’t mind traveling across the country to seek out training and development opportunities.

How long is the scheme?

Two years

Where you’ll be based

Opportunities are available across Britain, at locations including Stratford, Derby, York, Glasgow, Swindon, Manchester, Bristol, Milton Keynes, Basingstoke.

What you’ll be doing

Through four rotational placements, you’ll gain vast experience of the railway through one of the largest asset bases in Britain. You’ll make a key contribution to some of our major engineering projects, such as the Great Western Programme, the Northern Powerhouse or the Digital Railway. You might get experience of maintaining a variety of bridges and structures, or be responsible for specifying innovative building materials and techniques to improve reliability and sustainability. You could deliver management solutions for complicated inner-city assets, or establish inspection and maintenance requirements for embankments and cuttings running through the countryside.

As well as this, you’ll benefit from formal learning opportunities and leadership skills training. You’ll have a supervising civil engineer who will support your personal and professional development.

Entry requirements

Minimum of a 2:2 in an Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) accredited degree

What professional qualifications could you gain?

Significant evidence towards incorporated (IEng) or chartered (CEng) engineer status, accredited by the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC)

What opportunities are available at the end of the scheme?

Previous graduates have gone on to roles such as assistant project engineer, asset protection engineer or assistant design engineer. There are also plenty of opportunities for promotion to senior management positions across the organisation.

Why you should choose this scheme

The scheme is aligned to UK-SPEC objectives and is accredited by the ICE. You’ll have access to world-class training and the opportunity to be involved in some of the biggest engineering projects in Britain.

Hear from our recent graduate:

James, Civil engineer

View our application process

It’s an exciting company to work for and every day brings with it a new challenge. Graduates receive a lot of training so you’re always learning and you’ll be given the assistance you need towards becoming a chartered engineer. Network Rail wants the best out of you so not only will you improve as an engineer and a professional but also as an individual, both in and out of the working environment.

Amin Patel

How would you describe the breadth of Network Rail's work and the breadth of our opportunities for graduates?

Network Rail is a huge company with a variety of disciplines. As an engineering graduate, you could spend time working with teams in Maintenance, Route Asset Management and Infrastructure Projects, liaising with non-engineering teams on both small and large-scale projects.

Network Rail provides graduates with a wealth of opportunities and encourages us to make new opportunities and to bring new ideas and unique ways of thinking to the company. This allows you to discover what work you enjoy doing the most and what your strengths really are.

How varied have you found your role at Network Rail?

It has been more varied than I anticipated. I’ve worked in technical roles with both the civil and track design teams, completed practical work during night shifts with track maintenance teams, volunteered for management and leadership roles in graduate-related activities and even organised a coursework module and lectured at an engineering college.

I’m yet to complete Route Asset Management and Infrastructure Projects placements while on the scheme, so the variety is bound to continue.

What's the most exciting work you've done here?

Being out on a night shift with an on-track machine was a great experience. It was exciting to see a tamping machine at work but it was also fascinating to be involved in the whole process. I attended planning meetings to determine when and where the machine could be used given the resources available. I also worked with the track maintenance technical team to calculate and mark up the required track realignments for those operating the machine, followed by a post-work inspection to ensure that the tamping was a success.

What's been the best thing for you?

For me, the best thing about Network Rail is the people. Everyone will make time for you and they’re always willing to help. Joining a company with around 36,000 employees sounds daunting, but you’re made to feel welcome in the new and unfamiliar situations that you’ll undoubtedly encounter as a civil engineering graduate in the railway industry.

Why Network Rail?

It’s an exciting company to work for and every day brings with it a new challenge. Graduates receive a lot of training so you’re always learning and you’ll be given the assistance you need towards becoming a chartered engineer. Network Rail wants the best out of you so not only will you improve as an engineer and a professional but also as an individual, both in and out of the working environment.