Patricia Taylor is following in her father's footsteps as an engineer with the Army Corps of Engineers. Her specialty - environmental engineering - is one that changes rapidly and requires continual education.
"I have been on numerous vacancy selection boards and one thing I always noticed is that most of the candidates have master's degrees," Taylor says. "It is really a 'must have' credential in addition to Professional Engineer Registration to compete in this economy."
Taylor earned her master's degree in environmental engineering from SMU in 2002 and is currently working on her Ph.D. under the direction of Professor Roger Dickey.
She says her studies at SMU have not only increased her working knowledge, but also complemented her work experiences.
"The difference at SMU is the one-to-one contact and personal interest of the faculty and staff," she says. "In addition to the experienced and knowledgeable full-time faculty, the adjunct faculty members bring a wealth of real-world experiences to the classes. The information is up-to-date and extremely valuable. The contacts I have made are invaluable, too!"
Taylor says the ease of taking classes via videotape also is a big plus since her job requires a lot of travel. She recently began a new position in which she is assigned to EPA Region 6 as a project engineer in the Water Quality Division, working on the Louisiana coastal wetlands planning, protection and restoration program.
Taylor says her new position at EPA should provide her with a wealth of research opportunities for her thesis, which will probably be in the area of water resources or wetlands.
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