Project Engineer Johnniel Gomez is an integral member of Northeast Paving’s Massachusetts team. Like many in our industry, he has found opportunities to consistently advance his career and knowledge by embracing the challenges and hard work inherent to engineering roles. He discusses his love of Heavy Civil Construction and the team-based approach needed to successfully complete large-scale projects.
Q. What made you pursue engineering?
A. as I was growing up, I was always a hands-on learner and always wanted to build something. I went to a trade school and was a carpenter working residential and commercial construction from my sophomore year in high school all the way through my junior year of college. I loved building stuff but ultimately knew I wanted to be a construction/project manager in the field overseeing projects, so that’s what focused my attention on getting my Civil Engineering degree.
Q. What drew you to the civil construction industry over other engineering fields?
A. Although I enjoyed learning the design aspect of Civil Engineering, and it helped me understand a lot of how and why things are built the way they are, I wanted to be on the construction end of the industry and build projects, not just design them. I grew to love Heavy Civil construction as I took different classes in college as that was the most fascinating to me.
Q. What’s the most challenging part of your job?
A. Being a Project Engineer is always challenging, and we are faced with these challenges daily. Part of our job is to challenge ourselves and develop ways and ideas on how to overcome a challenge, design flaw, field issues, etc. I wouldn’t say any challenge is more challenging than others because every challenge and day is different in our world. If I had to pick a challenge we are currently facing, it would be technology. In the ever-growing world and industry, new and better technology is coming out. Sometimes we have the best technology out, but our project owners/agencies are not up to date on them, or they have completely different software. Whether it’s field software (survey, intelligent compaction, automation, etc.) or project management software (scheduling, accounting, documenting, etc.), there is always a challenge on how to present it and communicate (another big challenge) to every stakeholder so everyone is on the same page and has all the same information or data to build a project.
Q. What’s the most rewarding part of your job?
A. The most rewarding part of my job is seeing a project come to fruition and completion. From working on the bid in the early stages to going out, managing a team, and building a project. Then driving by or on the project with my family and showing or telling them that I helped build that road or bridge that improves our community and daily lives.
Q. What are your aspirations within this company?
A. My aspirations would be to continue to grow in my career and learn more and more each day to someday become a project manager and an operation manager overseeing an entire division. The company has provided me with the knowledge, training, assets, and ability to grow and learn throughout the years.