by Michael Simoneau, Senior Marketing Coordinator
I am not an engineer, scientist, or technical professional. As a kid I couldn’t build a good sandcastle, my Lego creations never amounted to much, and I often lacked the patience and wherewithal to complete even the most rudimentary jigsaw puzzles. Working in the A/E/C industry has given me an appreciation for what engineers, scientists, surveyors, landscape architects, environmental professionals, designers, planners, and other technical specialists do to truly make the built and natural worlds better. Though this week is named Engineers Week, we at Fuss & O’Neill take this week to celebrate every person in the A/E/C industry. So this my attempt to show my appreciation for the people with whom I work.
When it comes to the left brain/right brain debate, most assume that, if someone works in a technical field, they are left brained. That they are analytical and methodical, leaving those creative and artistic right-brained qualities to others. But that is simply not true. Are technical people analytical and methodical? Absolutely. But they are also very creative. Developing a solution that satisfies a particular set of problems is not always straightforward. I work with technical professionals that push beyond conventional wisdom to drive progressive documentation and policies. When plans do not necessarily match what exists on or under the ground, engineers, planners, surveyors, designers, etc. have to think quickly and be resourceful to make solutions work. When infrastructure starts to age or traffic backs up, these technical folks reimagine how to better utilize the assets in the area. And when climate change and weather wreak havoc on our communities, these same savvy individuals have figured out ways to use nature to combat nature. If that’s not creative, well then I don’t know what is!
The women and men that I am fortunate to work with are so passionate about what they do. The best part of my job is when I get to collaborate with the technical staff. It’s immediately obvious how much they care about what they do and how good they are at doing it. I think it’s pretty unique to work in an industry where people really love what they do. And I can see why. So many things that I take for granted (indoor plumbing, sewer systems, safe roads and bridges, breathable air, parks, non-toxic buildings, potable drinking water, habitable waterways, lights that appear when I flip a switch…) are things that they have dedicated their lives and their professions to improving. That must be very rewarding.
The theme of this year’s Engineers Week is “imagining tomorrow” and I think that really gets to the crux of engineering. But with all due respect to whomever chose this year’s theme, I would have gone with “imagining and creating a better tomorrow”, even though it’s a bit wordier, because that’s what my coworkers do. They first see the world for what it could be and then they figure out a way to make it happen, which is really fun to watch. I would also like to encourage future generations of engineers – those who can actually build amazing sandcastles, create Lego works of art, and finish jigsaw puzzles in minutes – to consider this field as your chosen profession. Because if we’re really going to “imagine tomorrow”, we need you to take us there!
If you know a technical professional or a budding technical professional, wish them a happy Engineers Week! We’ll be celebrating here all week (distanced this year, but hopefully back together next year) and I would like to say thank you to those that I work with and to technical and creative people all over the world!
Happy Engineers Week!
About the Author
Mike Simoneau is a Senior Marketing Coordinator who enjoys collaborating with everyone at Fuss & O’Neill and is constantly inspired by the solutions they create!