Board Member Spotlight February/March 2022

As part of our new Board Member Appreciation Program, we are showcasing a board member in our monthly Board Member Spotlight. Our board member spotlight recognizes board members of outstanding contributions to the profession and our local communities. For any questions regarding the program please contact the Past President PastPresident@ymf-oc.org.

For the February/March Spotlight, we would like to introduce...

MARIO MARTINEZ

  

We asked him to state his name, company, and position(s) in ASCE:      

Mario Martinez
Field Engineer | Flatiron Construction
CSULB Practitioner Advisor & Construction Institute Liaison

We also asked him a few questions about the following:

PERSONAL LIFE

Where did you grow up?

Hesperia, CA

What made you want to become an engineer?

When I was in high school, I was able to witness my first Civil Engineering project up close that solved a local problem. It provided a grade separation that connected communities directly, decreasing commuting time to only 5 minutes! I was so intrigued by this profession and what they can accomplish, that I was hooked.

Favorite hobbies, sports, and interests outside of engineering?

I love to be outdoors, whether that be running, hiking, or cycling. I make it a tradition to do a big race-type event near my birthday and have had the opportunity to run a marathon, half marathon, trail race, and do a century ride. If I am not outdoors, I will either be drawing or watching anime.

Finish this sentence: On Sunday mornings, you can usually find me...

… working on my house renovation project.

What college(s) did you attend? Can you list your degrees, any honors, and involvement in engineering organizations during school?

I received my B.S degree in Civil Engineering from CSULB in 2019. During my time in the university, I held positions in various engineering organizations, ASCE, MAES, and SHPE, including being the president of ASCE twice! I was also active in ASCE's technical projects where I held roles in their Timber Strong and Concrete Canoe teams. My favorite experience was being invited to participate in EERI's seismic design competition in Canada.

WORK & PROFESSIONAL LIFE

Describe your responsibilities and some significant projects.

As a Field Engineer with Flatiron, I get to be involved in the LAX Automated People Mover which will provide alternative modes of transportation to and within the airport. I spend my time on the field coordinating activities with my crews, where I get to learn different construction methods and procedures while following specifications from different AHJ's (LADWP, BOE, LADBS, LAWA, etc).

What is your favorite part about being a Civil Engineer?

My favorite part about our profession is being able to solve a challenging problem on a day-to-day basis in a creative and supportive space.

What skills do you find most valuable to focus on in your career?

The most valuable skill I have learned is communication. Efficient and clear communication is needed in the construction industry where we host various coordination meetings, the site walks with multiple trades, and preconstruction meetings. It also plays a role in teaching and mentoring.

What drew you to your specific career path? If you could start your career differently, what would you do differently?

The opportunities to experience various internships throughout my college career allowed me to dabble within the various disciplines in Civil Engineering and helped me narrow down my interests. It also helped when I was able to visit a few project sites through ASCE's networking, where I grew an interest in the construction industry. I had a background in design, but I was more fascinated by the constructability of a design. 

ASCE & PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

How/Why did you get involved? Why did you choose to stay involved?

I got introduced to ASCE during my freshmen year through a presentation held during my CE 101 course. I signed up for their mentorship program and got paired with the president at the time. They provided insight into what the organization had to offer and gave me a leadership role allowing me to be more involved. I enjoyed being surrounded by amazing individuals and the opportunities the organization provided. 

How has ASCE impacted your work and/or what is your favorite benefit of your involvement?

Since joining ASCE, my professional network has exploded with connections from all different civil engineering disciplines. Being involved has its perks as we will always be able to reach out to another ASCE member when we have technical questions, are looking for resources, need a reference, or looking for the next professional opportunity. 

Who is someone you admire and why?

I admire my parents who have always supported me and taught me the importance of getting an education and always moving forward. I would not be the person I am today without them, and I am thankful for them every day. Love you, Mom and Dad!

If you have one piece of advice to give to young professionals what would it be?

Ask questions and be curious. There is an abundance to learn within your profession and everybody has a story to tell.

Lastly, what would be your personal motto?

Every day is a new day to be a better you.


If you missed the last (January 2022) Board Member Spotlight, Michael Dinicola, you can click here to read his article.

To view the archive of all past Member Spotlights, click here.

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