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Alexandria Kapusta

B.S./M.S. Civil Engineering
Alexandria Kapusta

Hometown:  Phoenixville, PA

Current School Year: Junior

Anticipated year of Graduation: 2018

Major: B.S./M.S. Civil Engineering (Structural Concentration)

Please describe your study/research interests and why.
My curiosity and constant desire to understand why and how things are built led me to choose civil engineering as my major.  I specifically went the structural route because skyscrapers, bridges, and large infrastructure have always interested me.  Since I was little, I was never afraid of anything, especially heights.  I enjoy learning how and why things are made the way they are.  Civil engineering and construction allow my mind to grow in every possible way.  

Please describe your co-op experience. Include where you worked, a brief description of your duties, and what you learned.
I have had two co-ops so far and they were both at Turner Construction.  Turner Construction is a general contracting firm where engineers are needed for all job sites of every type of building to ensure the building is made correctly by our sub-contractors.  We are the connection between architects, owners, sub-contractors, and other engineering firms to ensure proper construction and communication is done from the bid/design stage to the post-construction stage.  My first co-op was at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia job site for their brand new outpatient care building on Penn's campus.  For my second co-op, I worked on the FMC Tower (Cira Centre South) skyscraper on 31st and Walnut Streets.  Both projects were rated LEED Silver.  I was an assistant superintendent for CHOP and an assistant engineer for FMC.  I have been given responsibility for many different sub-contractors, such as mechanical, electrical, plumbing, doors, frames, hardware, flooring, specialities, paint, wall coverings, millwork, and glazing.  The responsibilities included RFI's, submittals, material releasing, delivery, costs, field progress, pricing, and developing schedules.  

Please describe any extracurricular activities that you participate in.
I am an officer for the Drexel Ski/Snowboard club, a member of Phi Mu Fraternity, a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, and am Vice President of the Society of Women Engineers.  

Please explain more about what you intend to do as you further your studies and afterwards.

I hope to get my FE before graduation in 2018 and my PE after working full time for a few years.  I also hope to do my last co-op with a structural design engineering firm to hopefully get exposure to the design side.  This will help me in the field if I choose to stay in construction after graduation.  Understanding how things are designed and how they should be built help for buildings to be constructed properly and efficiently.  

In my free time, I love to do interval training at the art museum with an amazing, free workout group called November Project.  I also enjoy cooking and exploring new foods and dishes every week.  I have a passion for expanding the interest of engineering to young women and being a role model for all young women to pursue degrees in STEM fields.