College and Career Hosts Engineering Talk


Indira Naylor (she/her)

Construction engineer, Allison McCue, talks about the different projects she has worked on over the course of her career.

Construction engineer, Allison McCue, talks about the different projects she has worked on over the course of her career. (Indira Naylor (she/her))
Students get a chance to look at drawing sets of projects Allison McCue worked on. (Indira Naylor (she/her))
Students learn about what it is like to be an engineering major. (Indira Naylor)

A presentation on engineering was given by Allison McCue in the College and Career center on January 6 for students who are interested in pursuing the major in college. McCue, who is the Senior Vice President at the Construction company Webcor, talked about her personal experience with engineering as well as the day-to-day routine in the life of a construction engineer.

McCue decided to volunteer for the presentation because of her passion to “try to get people interested in construction and see it as an opportunity,” she said. She appreciates the lessons she learned while studying engineering and wants to be able to pass that knowledge along. “I think it’s taught me that there’s no problem that can’t be solved…some will be more painful than others, but there’s always a solution,” she said. Further, McCue expressed how invaluable the life skills she has gained through her work have proved, stating that “the industry has taught me a lot about integrity and owning up to either not knowing something or making a mistake.”

To begin the presentation, McCue mentioned what drew her to the major (her aptitude for math and the multitude of options engineers had) and gave advice regarding how to succeed in college while studying something as challenging as engineering.

McCue then went on to talk about her work: construction engineering. In the first three years of her career 90% of her work was done on the field where she poured concrete, solved structural problems, and compared architectural drawings to structural drawings. Currently, her focus is in the office where she manages contracts and money and analyzes computer simulated three-dimensional drawings of the project.

Finally, McCue presented different images of construction projects she has personally worked on or Webcor, as a company, has built. These included the SF MOMA, the Harvey Mudd terminal, and UC Berkeley California Memorial Stadium.

Junior Daisy Penney expressed her appreciation for the engineering career talk. She said that during the presentation she was taught “what you have to do in college” to get an engineering degree and “how you can utilize [the degree] to the best of its abilities.” Though Penney mentioned that she wasn’t necessarily going to “follow engineering” because math “is not her strongest suit,” she was still glad she went to the talk. At Campo “there’s a very high standard when it comes to careers,” but this career talk “opened [her] eyes to a lot of the opportunities that are out there for us,” she said.

For Junior Catelyn Cereghino, the career talk was immensely helpful for someone who is indecisive about what she wants to study in college. Cereghino said she has “always been good at math and science” and “figured it would be interesting to learn about engineering and construction management” since she is curious about both. The presentation was inspiring to Cereghino because it taught her about the different doors that engineering opened for her in the future. “I learned about how there are many different types of engineering” and the “different paths of career jobs that you can take with an engineering degree, specifically in construction management.”

The career talk was an informative and interactive way of teaching students about the different options they have past highschool and specifically what they can do with a degree in engineering. Further, the audience was able to learn more about ins and outs of what being an engineer entails. As McCue said, “we want people to learn..and we want to teach and mentor and…create the next generation of builders.”