Board Member Spotlight

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

For the April/May Spotlight, we would like to introduce...



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

Nathaniel T. Kapongo
Transportation Engineering Associate at Los Angeles Department of Transportation
CSULB Practitioner Advisor
WRYMC Treasurer 

We also asked him a few questions about the following:


Where did you grow up?

Downey, CA

What made you want to become an engineer?

Both my parents work in medicine and after seeing how much school they had to do, I said, "nah." During high school, my school had PLTW (Project Lead the Way), a series of different classes that exposed us to different types of engineering. We spent a month focusing on trusses and bridges which made me start looking into civil engineering while applying to colleges. I got into CSULB and the rest is history.

Favorite hobbies, sports, and interests outside of engineering?

Food, god I love food. On my Instagram, I have a highlight reel called "One Bite Reviews" where I'll take one big bit and give it a score. I'm also a very big gamer which helps me distress after a long work day. I'm a LA native so Lakers in 5!

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

... sleeping and quidditch.

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

I attended California State University, Long Beach, and received my Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering with an emphasis in Transportation in 2021. I was heavily involved in ASCE since my freshman year with different roles such as Conference Chair, Vice-President, and President. I've been awarded the ASCE OC YMF Achievement Scholarship and the STEM Advantage Scholarship during college.  


Describe your responsibilities and some significant projects.

I've been working at LADOT for 4 years now working in different sections. I first started as an intern working in Signal Design where I used AutoCAD to create base maps for intersections and propose any new plans. Now I work in our Metro Programs Division where I review signal, geometric, and construction plans. I'm currently working on the Metro Orange Line Project which will be a rapid bus route from North Hollywood to Northridge that will never have to stop at intersections!

What is your favorite part about being a Civil Engineer?

My favorite part of being a civil engineer is seeing a project that I designed being built.

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

People skills, being able to work alongside anyone. Everyone has different work and communication styles that you will need to adapt to. 

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

I originally started with a focus on water resources but after an internship in water, I realized it wasn't for me. I had a great professor her name is Dr. Parentela, for a transportation class that I loved, and I spoke many times about working in the transportation field with her. Also, I hate sitting in traffic, so I want to do something about it. I honestly wouldn't change anything that I've done.


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

I went to the first ASCE meeting of the year as a freshman and Dr.Redman said I have to be President. I stayed in because I was just having so much fun and learning a lot

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

My favorite thing about  ASCE is just constantly meeting new people across the globe.

Who is someone you Admire and Why?

I admire my parents they came to America from DRC and had to start over. They both went back to graduate school while raising two kids and doing everything they can to provide for us. They also instilled in me the value of hard work and education.

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

Relax, and make sure you make time for yourself, your hobbies, and your friends/families.

Lastly, what would be your personal motto?

F it, we ball.

If you missed the last (February/March 2023) Board Member Spotlight, Chris Wongsavanh, you can click here to read his article.

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

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President's Message

Welcome to the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Orange County Younger Member Forum (OC YMF)! For those who are new to our organization, OC YMF aims to help Younger Members grow professionally and serves both the profession and the community!

I am humbled to have the opportunity to serve as the OC YMF President for the 2022-2023 Fiscal Year. I look forward to continuing my contribution to this awesome organization alongside so many great individuals.

Over the years, my experience with OC YMF has been a great one! I appreciate all of the friendships I have made, the opportunities for personal and professional growth, and the ability to have a positive impact on the community. I definitely recommend getting involved!

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