Engineering, Poetry

What is Engineering?

Engineering is the application
of science and mathematics.
It’s the medicine you injest
to fight off a cold.
It’s the chemicals you spray
to kill off the mold.
It’s the engine that runs in your car
and the plane that flies you so far.
Engineering is all around,
in your life and forever bound
to you.
It’s the sidewalk on which you jog,
the boat on which you sail,
the room where you rest and slumber,
and the computer where you read your mail.
Engineering is where art and practicality collide.
It’s the stain-glass window you see in a church
that casts multicolored sun rays across the pews.
It’s the colored concrete that looks like red brick
that you walk on as you cross the street.
It’s the school cafeteria
designed to look like a chapel.
It’s the large swimming pool
that looks like Mickey Mouse
and includes two slides and fountain.
Engineering is the creative solution to life’s little problems.
It’s the volume button on the steering wheel
and the microwave that cooks your frozen meal.
It’s the e-reader that saves you space
and the map app that takes you any place.
Engineering is all around,
in your life and forever bound
to you and me and all across society.



I was going to talk about a different topic, but work has been bringing me down lately, so I want to talk about that.

Mostly it’s been this past week, but it’s not the first time I’ve felt like this. Things are slow. At least for me. Our CAD guy is overloaded and I can’t really help because all I learned how to do in school was draw lines and make shapes and make everything centered and line up correctly. He would have to take time that he doesn’t have to show me how to do something that he could do in the time he was showing me how to do it. Lame. The other engineers have their own things going on and don’t really have much for me. As a result, I have put way more time that I’d like on General Admin. Specifically this week but there was also a day last week that had about 7 hours on general admin.

I feel useless. It’s a really sucky feeling because I like to do stuff and feel accomplished. As long as I have something to do, even if it’s just scanning papers and saving them in the right location so the company can go paperless, I will work hard at it. I will show up early, I will work diligently, and I will be in a good mood. Today, I was 20 minutes late for work. Why even come to work? – I thought. It’s not like I’m doing anything. I worked on our company website for two days straight. Which looks fantastic, but I’d much rather be doing something more meaningful. Even when I do get work, if I don’t understand what it is or how it’s benefiting anything, I still feel pretty useless. I’ve been starting to wonder why I was even hired. This useless feeling has made me feel very apathetic toward this job and a little depressed in general. I don’t feel like a useful member of society. I’m just sitting around fiddling on the internet with this website until time to go home. It’s awful. I’d rather be outside with the survey crew or do some field investigation or SOMETHING.

On top of that, I haven’t heard back from the college about volunteering to be a GED tutor. The Sims 4 just came out, which is fun and exciting. But it’s hard to enjoy playing games when I don’t feel like I get anything accomplished during the work day, so I don’t feel like I deserve to relax and play games in the evenings. This cycle is going to have to stop soon because I feel like I’m spiraling down into a depression.

Maybe I should have held out for a different job. Although I do like the small office vibe and the perks that come with it, like not having any strict rules. And the work we do is pretty important to society because it’s mostly city/county work. For example, we’re currently trying to find the problem in once of the city’s sewer system to stop it from spilling over. We’ve done parks, sidewalks, apartments, airport strips, roadwork, and utility work. Maybe if I look at all the ways we’re helping the community, I can feel like I’m part of it. I’m just having trouble feeling it. Maybe because I’ve always wanted to have a bigger impact, and these are small jobs.

I have been thinking about doing something with The Green Program. If you’ve never heard of them, look them up. I’m an alum. My fourth year in college I spent Spring Break in Costa Rica learning about different types of green energy hands on. It was a wonderful, life-affecting experience. I’d love to be a bigger part in something like that. Maybe after working here a while I’ll look into that.

I’m hoping that next week will be busier for me and I wont’ be feeling so down in the dumps. This happens anytime it’s slow, but this is the worse it’s been. I usually feel better when I have a lot going on at work because I go home feeling accomplished and to me, that’s one of the best feelings in the world.

As always, I’d love to hear [read] any thoughts, observations, ideas, personal stories, etc, that you’d like to share. 🙂

Engineering, New Beginnings

Beginning Career

So, the reason I wanted to do this blog is because I’m just starting out in life after college. I feel like I’m on a decently successful road and wanted to share some of what I have learned. I also feel a little lost in life, though I’m generally a happy person, so I wanted to put down my thought as I figure things out and if you read my thoughts and have ideas or observations or words of motivation or advice (don’t expect me to follow it, but I’ll always take it into consideration and be thankful you care enough to offer it) or whatever, please, please share. Sometimes others see things I can’t and I like to have these things pointed out to me because it helps me understand myself better. Also, I’m pretty knew in “the real world” so I value the advice or life observations of those who have been at it a while.

Interest. As I went through college, getting my degree in Civil Engineering (with a concentration in Environmental Engineering and a minor in English), my interest veered towered water and waste water treatment. Some of you may think that’s weird. Well, I think an interest in being a doctor is weird, but I sure am glad there are people interested in it. So, yes, water and waste water treatment. I am very interested in the chemistry and biology behind it. I like that there are so many different ways to do it and new ways are still being discovered. I love that there are ways to make energy with the treatment, tho mostly on a small scale. The whole thing is so interesting to me and that’s what I most want to be involved with. Often, I don’t feel smart enough to design them myself, but I really want to try.

Career. I graduated. Somehow. Not the highest GPA, but I got the 3.0 minimum. I applied for job after job and became glad anytime I heard back, even if it was a rejection, because at least I knew. Most of the jobs I really wanted, jobs actually at least somewhat related to my interest, wanted 5-8 years of experience. Yuck. I kept applying and interviewing. In the meantime, I studied for and passed the Fundamentals of Engineering Exam. I got hired at a small engineering firm in southern MS – on the coast, actually. I like the company, I like where I live, but this isn’t the job I though it was going to be. I knew I wasn’t going to learn to design waste water treatment plants, but I still thought it would be a good job – and it is, don’t get me wrong, but it’s just not what I was expecting. I expected get well-rounded experience, but it’s looking like I’m going to be doing mostly project management – the last thing I wanted to do with this degree, by the way. The job started off pretty cool, and I’ve gotten to do neat stuff like climb a water tower, but I’m like the middle man in this project I’m doing and I don’t like it. This firm doesn’t seem to do much designing. They contract out all the work and most of the designing. We have a survey crew, though. Busy days are few and far between, and I love busy days. They make the day go by fast and I feel accomplished at the end of the day. When I spend hours with nothing to do (and I go around and try my best to find something – anything – to do) and have to fluff up my time sheet – I hate it. It makes me tired and I feel unaccomplished at the end of the day and guilty for over charging clients. My plan was going to be to stay here and get PE, then move on. But that doesn’t seem fair to the head of the company, who is teaching me and helping me get my PE, and I don’t think I could stick here for four whole years, anyway. Plus, if I get my PE and I’ve only worked here, I won’t feel like I know enough to have earned my PE. Especially when what I want to do is design treatment plants. I think.

So, I’m a little lost. I don’t know what I want to do, but I know it’s not this. If you read my background, you know I like helping others. I want to do something to help others in the biggest way I can. I think I can best accomplish that with my PE. But maybe I’m wrong.

Please feel free to share thoughts, observations, ideas, personal stories, etc. I’d love to hear them 🙂