The ASCE Texas Section Board of Direction members were asked to fill out a questionnaire so that the Section’s members might get to know them a little better on a more personal level. These are Brady Stanford’s answers:
When did you first get involved with ASCE at any level (student chapter, local branch, section)?
2012. My first engineering job encouraged us to attend the monthly meetings. Within 3-4 months of attending, they had officer elections, and nobody would volunteer for the branch President position, so I figured it couldn’t be that hard. I became President that following year. I had no clue what I was doing, but the ASCE Texas Section staff was a great help, and I made it through the year and have continued my involvement ever since.
What is your favorite thing about ASCE?
The networking and support of fellow members.
How has ASCE helped you in your career?
ASCE has helped me realize the benefits of being a volunteer and provides the sense of pride I get from being involved with this organization.
What’s your most memorable project?
It was a covered parking lot at the Midland airport. This project was my first opportunity to be involved with the design, project management, and contractor coordination. I had to deal with various issues that came up, like hitting a gas line that was marked incorrectly and having to notify the airport (which is not a fun call to make). I also dealt with various construction issues and learned a lot about the importance of coordinating construction efforts with the various contractors and troubleshooting problems as they came up.
What are some of your long-term career goals? What about ASCE goals?
My career goals are to obtain my engineering and surveying licenses and expand the family business to include engineering services. With ASCE, my Director at Large term is ending this year, and I will likely take time to focus on getting licensed. Once I have accomplished that, I would like to continue my involvement with the Texas Section. I am always promoting ASCE to young engineers and encouraging them to get involved by becoming an officer at the local level.
What do you love the most about being a civil engineer?
I love the sense of pride I get from designing infrastructure used everyday by people who don’t consider the level of effort that goes into making life safe and easy so they can enjoy their lives without worry.
Give us three words to describe what a civil engineer does
Protect The Public!
When did you know you wanted to be a civil engineer?
It took me a while to even know I wanted to be a civil engineer. My mom made me apply to Texas Tech University, although I never thought I would even go to college. Then, I got accepted and chose to study civil engineering. I didn’t take going to class or studying seriously and learned I needed to apply myself. After that, I realized I enjoyed my classes and learning about the different aspects of civil engineering. It was an appreciation that had to be learned the hard way, and I have enjoyed it ever since.
What is the biggest challenge civil engineers face today?
As a young engineer, the biggest challenge is finding an employer who will spend the time to train you properly and mentor you. Until you know what you are doing, it’s hard to know what challenges there are, and they vary for each of us. One thing I think will be a challenge in the near future is dealing with automation. In West Texas the challenge is keeping up with the needs of the Oil and Gas industry, whether it’s dealing with the deterioration of roads or lack of homes, this area has a deficit of contractors and it is hard to be proactive and not reactive.
How do you see the civil engineering profession changing over the next 10 years?
I don’t think it will change much, we will always have the same issues. There might be some new technology that drastically changes how a particular field of civil engineering functions, but as long as we keep up with new technology as it emerges we will adapt and embrace it.
Give us your best 2-3 sentence piece of advice for the next generation of civil engineers
Find an employer who wants to help you become the best engineer you can be. Don’t accept a job unless you feel it is a good fit for you. When you find that job, make yourself valuable to that company by working hard and having an open mind and willingness to learn from anyone and everyone, even contractors and surveyors :).
What is your go-to calculator?
What is your favorite holiday?
July 4th, my birthday.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
Bass Fishing and Hunting
Who is the most famous person you have met?
Nolan Ryan or Nick Swardson
What would your superpower be?
Other than the ones I already have, I guess the ability to see into the future.
Mountains or beach?
Neither. I prefer the lake!
Give us your best (clean) joke:
Reaching the end of a job interview, the Human Resources Officer asks a young engineer fresh out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, “And what starting salary are you looking for?” The engineer replies, “In the region of $125,000 a year, depending on the benefits package.” The interviewer inquires, “Well, what would you say to a package of five weeks vacation, 14 paid holidays, full medical and dental, company matching retirement fund to 50% of salary, and a company car leased every two years, say, a red Corvette?” The engineer sits up straight and says, “Wow! Are you kidding?” The interviewer replies, “Yeah, but you started it.