Chicago WIC Week 2021

Project Engineer

Years with Mortenson: 3
Industry Tenure: 3
Degree: MS Construction Management, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign



Tell us more about your background/experience/education. What decision or path led you to the construction industry/Mortenson?

I always wanted to be an engineer, and my parents noticed this due to my keen interest in structures and asking for gifts that involved buildings, structures, etc. I completed my Bachelor in Civil Engineering degree in India, with Construction Management as my minor and decided to come to the U.S. for my Masters Degree in Construction Management since India doesn’t have many schools offering the course.
I heard about Mortenson at my school's career fair and the diversity of projects and people at Mortenson made me curious to learn more about the company. My visit to the Minneapolis office for my final interview was heartwarming. People were genuinely interested in talking to me and knowing about my background and culture. I am really happy to be here and I miss my family much less because of the people I work with.  

Tell us about your female role model or mentor that helped you grow your career. How do/did they inspire you?

Construction is not a preferred career for women, especially in India, but my mom believed in me and gave me the courage to pursue my career in this field. She was the person who encouraged me to come to the U.S. and further my studies in Construction Management. I am the first and only person in my family who has stepped out of the country to study and pursue a career, and I firmly believe that it is because of my mom that I am here and working in the construction field.    

What advice would you give other women considering a career in construction or the AEC industry?

Believe in yourself; nothing can stop you if you are passionate about it. The construction industry is no longer for men only and I have met so many strong women leaders who are encouraging and believe in creating a positive atmosphere for female team members. Don’t be afraid to try new things, be willing to learn, ask questions. Talk to as many people in the industry as possible and understand what might be the right career path for you.