Amal Issa 44

When I went into civil engineering at university I had this vision of working at the computer designing roads and bridges but the way it’s worked out has been amazing.  I actually don’t do any designing because as a project manager I’m part of the management team.  I don’t spend a lot of time in the office and I’m involved in everything from planning and scheduling projects to negotiating contracts and dealing directly with our clients.  Every day is different and that’s perfect for me. I didn’t go to work right after school.  After I got my civil engineering degree I stayed at university and got my MBA because as I’ve found out being a project manager is just as much about operating a business as it is about the actual construction. After school I had to learn about construction of course because in this business all the degrees in the world won’t get you far if you don’t understand how things work on a construction site. I spent a few years at first just as an assistant to a project manager who’s retired now and he taught me all of the things you can’t learn at university. I love the satisfaction that comes with seeing a project come together and these days we usually have at least three or four big projects going at one time. There are always problems to solve and nothing ever goes quite the way you planned in construction.  The challenges are huge but the rewards make it all worthwhile.