Being a student can offer both fun and tremendous amounts of stress.
It is an experience that can provide an opportunity to make lifelong connections that will remain part of social circles for many years – and it supplies the skills that will position the student for a professional career.
However, some students experience a tougher education than others, among them civil engineering students. They must cope with incredible workloads and master complex concepts – they simply need to put in the hours.
What Types of Hobbies Are Best for Civil Engineering Students?
Those mentioned earlier are some of the reasons that civil engineering students need a hobby.
They may not have the time to simply unwind and enjoy the social life that is so much a part of the rounded student experience, so when they do have some precious downtime, they need to make the most of it.
Some of the best types of hobbies for engineering students would be those that foster creativity and allow them to socialize, something that can prove challenging when you are studying almost constantly.
Recommended Hobbies for Civil Engineering Students
1. Scale Modeling
This hobby seems tailor-made for civil engineering students. It requires creativity and an eye for detail – and the intricacy of some of the models is incredible.
The focus that is required to complete some of these scale models means that it is simply not possible to think about anything else – and sometimes that can mean that stress simply evaporates.
The fact that there are a huge number of different scale models available (anything from army and civilian vehicles to monuments of the world and even machinery with working parts) means that there is something for everyone.
The advent of 3D printers now provides engineering students with a hobby that dovetails with their chosen field of study.
For those with an analytical or math-oriented way of thinking, 3D printing is a perfect hobby. The fact that it can also be tremendously creative adds to its allure.
Lego is the world’s premier brick system – and there is good reason for its popularity. There are a tremendous number of Lego sets available, in fact, over a thousand.
These sets vary enormously in complexity, and there are some that provide the opportunity to build almost anything, including vehicles from some great movies (Star Wars, for one).
But engineering students might be drawn toward the Lego Technic line. This line allows Lego lovers to build vehicles and machinery that mimic the working parts of the real thing. There are also robotics Lego sets.
The great thing about Lego is that it rewards patience and problem-solving – but is also tremendously creative.
The focus on linear thinking is also part and parcel of the Lego experience, and the ability to follow sometimes complex instructions would be rewarding for the civil engineering student.
The sense of achievement when a set is complete is one that will immediately bring down stress levels.
This is a great hobby as it engages the imagination while still harnessing the skills of the civil engineering student when it comes to perspective and an eye for detail.
There is also a wealth of subject matter, from landscapes to portraits. In fact, the engineering student could simply opt for abstract drawing, which stimulates the imagination.
One of the great things about drawing is the fact that it does not require any specialized equipment to get going. However, as one progresses and becomes more skilled, the variety of mediums begs to be explored (for instance, charcoal drawing).
This is also a hobby that requires focus, and that focus means that there is very little mental space to be worrying about the stress of civil engineering studies.
4. Growing a Herb Garden
Even a dorm room has enough space for those who want to enjoy the experience of nurturing something that grows. There are a huge variety of herbs, with many miniature varieties that are perfect for a windowsill.
This hobby can be immensely relaxing and is the perfect antidote to stress. Simply choosing which herbs to grow is a wonderful exercise.
The act of caring for something alive is rewarding (as is looking up tips in a gardening book) – and can provide an escape from the sometimes dry academic experience.
The bonus: the herbs can be harvested sustainably – and what better way could there be to liven up those budget meals that are so much a part of the student experience.
This is another one of those hobbies that can combine creativity with technical expertise – and that makes it one that can be tremendously rewarding for civil engineering students.
It is also a hobby that is a great avenue towards self-expression, something that the sometimes isolated engineering student may find attractive.
The focus (pun intended) that is required in order to produce that stunning image will also reward those with an eye for detail and the patience to master sometimes complex technical equipment – something that a civil engineering student would find rewarding.
Photography may not be as expensive as the average engineering student may think. Many modern smartphones boast incredible optics – and free image editing software is freely available on the Internet.
The huge variety of subject matter, such as landscapes and portraiture, means that there is something for every aspiring photographer.
6. Comic Collecting
Now, this may shout “nerd” loudly, but the fact of the matter is that comic collecting is growing in popularity, in part due to the success of the Marvel and DC movies that are now so popular.
Comics are perfect for those who appreciate great art and creativity. Collecting them offers a great way to relax as one searches for that elusive edition, great work by a specific artist, or completing a collection based on a beloved character.
There’s a bonus; many comics can grow in value over time. For instance, “More Fun Comics” No. 73 featured Aquaman for the first time and recently sold for over $104,000.
Most civil engineering students may never find a comic as valuable as that, but scouring second-hand bookstores and thrift shops, as well as yard sales, can be part of the fun – and help the engineering student unwind by getting them away from their desks.
The sheer number of puzzles available to the engineering student can be mind-boggling.
There is a myriad of subjects. Each and every puzzle requires focus and concentration – and that focus allows for distraction from the pressures of a highly demanding study schedule.
The types of puzzles that are available today are also extremely broad.
In fact, many civil engineering students may want to dip their toes in the wonderful world of 3D puzzles, which can be complex and challenging – and has subject matter such as well-known architecture and even cityscapes.
This is a hobby that requires focus, problem-solving, patience, and creative thinking – perfect for the aspiring engineer.
Hobbies to Avoid for Civil Engineering Students
Studying for a degree in civil engineering can be a time-consuming business. Hobbies that simply take up too much time should be avoided. It would be far better to choose a hobby that rewards brief flurries of activity.
Online simulations such as SimCity and others may be attractive due to the fact that they would seem to harness the civil engineering students’ skill set.
But the point is to take a break from the subject matter of civil engineering – perhaps leave that sort of pastime for an occasional dabble – they can also become tremendously addictive and eat into the students valuable time.
It’s always good to take a break and destress.
The hobbies above are great for civil engineering students who want to explore their creative side and hone their problem-solving skills or even master a new skill set.
The point is to escape the normal high-pressure student experience – and simply relax.