Civil Engineering/Construction Engineering Technology students attend WCLS

Louisiana Tech University seniors Chloe Wallace and Katya Opel recently attended the 2019 Kiewit Women in Construction Leadership Seminar in Colorado.

Katya Opel (left) and Chloe Wallace (right) with Louisiana Tech graduate and Kiewit employee Mallory Walters.

Katya Opel (left) and Chloe Wallace (right) with Louisiana Tech graduate and Kiewit employee Mallory Walters.

The Women’s Construction Leadership Seminar is a two-day event designed to develop the leadership skills of collegiate women. Attendees for the limited-seat seminar are selected based on academic success, leadership potential and passion for construction and engineering fields.

While at the seminar, Opel, a civil engineering major, and Wallace, a construction engineering technology major, got hands-on experience, as well as networking experience, and were able to tour active construction sites and gain valuable knowledge of the industry.

“I brought back so many helpful tools that I am not only excited to use myself but also to share with other young women interested in entering the field,” Opel said. “There were so many young women from all over the country, and it was fascinating to hear how their college experiences in the same field relate to ours.”

“The most interesting part of the seminar was getting to see how influential a woman can be in the fields of civil and construction engineering,” Wallace added. “The women who led the panel demonstrated the confidence, independence and ability to compete in such a male-dominated field.”

Both students were recommended by Jeff Pike, senior lecturer of civil engineering and construction engineering technology.

“We’re so proud of how well these two young ladies represent us,” Pike said of students’ overall level of commitment to their programs and their participation in the seminar, which is limited to fewer than 50 students from universities around the country. “The seminar is very competitive nationally, but Louisiana Tech got two slots.”

“The close relationships between students and faculty here at Tech allow professors to see our potential while supporting and guiding us to succeed outside of our University,” Opel said. “I’m thankful for the opportunity to represent Louisiana Tech at the seminar.”