"Personally and professionally, I would like to be involved in projects that will be universally beneficial. Projects that are beneficial to society, environmentally beneficial, and economically beneficial."
Describe your dream job.
I would love to be in charge of large scale construction projects that entail mixed-use development (work, live, play environments). These developments combine residential, commercial, and entertainment all in one.
Why do you believe that you are the next-generation pioneer of your industry?
I believe that I am the next-generation pioneer in my industry who will hopefully employ mixed-use developments; neighborhoods of the future. They will be paramount in urban areas where sprawl is a serious issue. These developments will contain more in less amount of land area. Not only that, these developments will foster more connected neighborhoods in which people will have more interaction and communication amongst themselves. This will help those lead healthier lifestyles by promoting walking and cycling and community engagement. In addition these developments will give way to more green space (parks, etc.) and things such as green roofs, community gardens, rain collection systems can help prosperity.
How has GREEN played a role in shaping your professional endeavors?
Before the GREEN Program, I thought that, in order to be environmentally-friendly that society will drastically have to change how we live and I just don’t think that’s true. During my time in Iceland, I was able to recognize how this tiny country was able to provide necessities for their citizens using renewable energy sources. Granted in the U.S., we have 1000 times more citizens, but complementing our energy sources with those found in Iceland could significantly lessen our impacts on the environment and most citizens probably wouldn’t even notice. Since then, I have come to understand that we can implement environmentally-conscious practices within every industry and that it would be beneficial to all.
What is the biggest take-away and/or favorite part of your GREEN program experience?
Although I was able to take a lot of professional development and technical ideas with me back to America, my favorite part of my GREEN experience was without a doubt the people that I met and the places and things I was able to see and experience. The pictures I took and the stories I have don’t give justice to the sites I visited or to the diverse people that I made lifelong friends with.
How are you leveraging your experience on The GREEN Program?
I helped get a study abroad/ research opportunity started at Virginia Tech with faculty members, in which students who have attended the GREEN Program, or who will, can get research experience in Green Engineering, which they can apply to their experience from their trip. I’ve spoken with numerous potential employers about the innovation that could arise from my and others’ experiences within the GREEN Program. I have used my experience as a bullet item on my resume.
What’s next on your travel bucket-list?
I plan to hike the entire Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine.