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Women On The Move: Ally The Engineer, Civil P.E.

Updated: Mar 6


Featuring Women on the Move with Utility Pro™ and their Safety Alliance Program. The Safety Alliance’s mission is to unite professionals and promote safe, responsible practices in the workplace. The Safety Alliance aspires to be the go-to resource for industry news and best practices, and we are committed to helping workers stay safe on the job.


Ally is a civil engineer who is enthusiastic about advocating for women in STEM fields and educating her online community about construction!


WHAT MOTIVATED YOU ORIGINALLY TO BECOME AN ENGINEER?

I was good at math and problem solving, and I knew engineering could be a lucrative career option as well. I also watched a major highway get built as I drove by the project every day on the way to high school.


WHAT IS THE MOST CHALLENGING ASPECT OF YOUR WORK, AND HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH IT?

The most challenging aspect of my job is definitely facilitating getting things done between parties who are not always great at communicating or working together to solve an issue.


YOUR HOBBIES INCLUDE CLIMBING, SKIING, AND HIKING; YOU ARE NOW TRAINING FOR A MARATHON. DO YOU ENJOY THESE ACTIVITIES AS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR RELAXATION, AS A CHALLENGE, OR BOTH/NEITHER?

Part of the reason why I enjoy construction so much is because I love being outside. That is reflected in the hobbies I take part in! I do also love a challenge.


WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO WOMEN, SUCH AS YOURSELF, WHO WORK IN PREDOMINANTLY MALE FIELDS?

My best advice is find a good mentor. Also, it’s okay to not know everything immediately, work on being able to say “let me get back to you on that.” Which goes back to finding a mentor so you can ask questions and learn from someone you trust.


IN WHAT WAY DO YOU CONSIDER YOURSELF NOT AN AVERAGE ENGINEER? IS IT ABOUT BEING A WOMAN IN A PREDOMINANTLY MALE FIELD?

The not your average engineer tag is based on a couple different reasonings, the first being that I am a woman in a male dominated field. Another being that I believe that more engineers need to listen to and learn from tradespeople. The career paths go hand in hand, one cannot succeed without the other. I was tired of the “us versus them” mentality, and want to help change that. “Project management still involves engineering, it is my responsibility to sign off on everything that goes on, on my sites. I need to know the ins and outs of our contract, what materials are specified and the nuances of the work that will be completed, including the inspections of this work.”


WHAT ASPECT OF YOUR JOB DO YOU FIND MOST REWARDING?

The best part of my job is that I can point to sites that I have helped on and been able to say “I helped build that,” even though I do not do the physical labor (and obviously respect those that do) I help facilitate the completion of that work through my expertise.


Connect with Ally: INSTAGRAMTIKTOK


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