Mais Sagradyan

Scholarship Status: Awarded 1st Place
Scholarship Awarded: Gary Gilbert Achievement Scholarship
University: California State University, Long Beach
Date of Graduation: May 2017


Civil Engineering has changed a lot from its beginnings, evolving from its architectural connections into a military tool to now again benefiting civilization through a wide range of infrastructure, all essential to life. In ancient Egyptian and Roman times there only existed an Engineer. This Engineer was responsible for everything being built from military vessels to the Coliseum and pyramids still standing today. In later years with more advance technology other engineering disciplines where born such as Mechanical and Electrical but the origins of engineering begin with Civil Engineering practices of the ancient Engineers. Up until the late 1700’s Civil Engineers where know as Military Engineers responsible for or military infrastructure such as roads in order to protect communications. In 1771 John Smeaton became the first self proclaimed Civil Engineer, distinguishing the field from all others and officially creating its own branch. Civil Engineering throughout history has benefited mankind. It has increased the living standards for all civilization through its many sub disciplines such as structural and hydrologic engineering. I appreciate the good that can be done through Civil Engineering. Tom Herbel, the City Engineer of Huntington Beach perfectly described the Civil Engineer. He described them as the unsung heroes of the city. Many people take the work of a Civil Engineer for granted, mainly due to the lack of knowledge and understanding of what a Civil Engineer does, but I do appreciate the work done by Engineers. Everyday I open my faucet I know that a Civil Engineer worked hard to get water into drought riddled California by transporting it for hundreds of miles. I am thankful that the structures I walk into still stand and are safe under all the loading because a Structural Engineer took to time to check his or her beam calculations. I am most certainly grateful to the Wastewater Engineers who takes away what gets flushed down the toilet or poured down the sink and designs a way to treat it and even treat it to a point where that water can replenish our dwindling groundwater supply. Civil Engineers do a lot to make sure our life runs as smoothly as possible and doesn’t ask for praise because the use of the infrastructure is praise enough. I aspire to be a Civil Engineer that gives back even more to the community, if possible. I want to take all our new advancements in sustainable design and implement them to their full potential while still being cost effective through the lifetime of my designs. Becoming a Civil Engineer now has given me the opportunity to witness the effects of aging and failing infrastructure. Our roads have aged, bridges have fallen, and pipes have exploded with even more problems on the way. Instead of contributing to the problem I wish to be the solution through innovation, keeping the public and environment in mind. With graduation closing in and my Civil Engineering future in site, I am truly excited. I am ready to take the next step, using my education from school, my practical experience from internships, and the tools ASCE has exposed me to in order to make changes to better the world we live in for years to come.

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