Ali is a senior civil engineering and sustainability studies major who hopes to work in hydrology following graduation. She is a certified Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Associate, and most recently, she was selected as one of American Society of Civil Engineers' New Faces of Civil Engineering. Each year, this honor is given to 10 talented collegians for their academic accomplishments and commitment to serving others.
Major: Civil engineering and sustainability studies
Why did you join Alpha Phi? I was moving a thousand miles away from home and wanted to be able to find a group that I could trust and knew would always be there for me. During recruitment, I instantly knew that Alpha Phi would do just that.
How did you discover engineering as a passion? I have always been interested in math and science. During my senior year of high school, my stepdad and I went through all of the different types of engineering. I wanted something that I knew I would not have to sit at a desk all day. From this, I realized that I have always been fascinated with infrastructure and civil engineering.
What accomplishment are you most proud of? I applied for the American Society of Civil Engineers' New Faces of Engineering, College Edition after one of my professors encouraged me to do so. To my surprise, I was selected as one of the 10 featured college students in the nation. Being recognized for my hard work by my professional society was truly one of the best feelings.
You worked an internship while pursuing a double major, all while maintaining a 3.5 GPA. How did you balance work, school and your personal life? There were many times throughout college that I struggled to balance work, school and my personal life. I knew that my education always came first. Luckily, my internship is with a company that allows me to work around my schedule. This has truly helped with the balance. Additionally, I try to always take one day on the weekend as a personal day. I try to take some time to relax. Throughout my years in college, I've developed a knack for planning and time management.
What's your favorite class you've taken at Florida Tech and why? My favorite class has been hydraulics and hydrology. This class helped me decide what discipline of civil engineering that I wanted to go into. Additionally, I really enjoyed my introduction to sustainability class. After taking this class during the first semester of my sophomore year, I decided to add a sustainability studies degree.
What's your favorite Alpha Phi memory? My favorite Alpha Phi memory is from my sophomore year, when I served as my chapter's director of alumnae relations. This position had never been very involved in our chapter, and I was able to revamp and plan the largest alumnae weekend our chapter has ever had. This really allowed me to see my potential and learn how Alpha Phi has helped so many others.
How has Alpha Phi encouraged and supported you academically? Alpha Phi supports and encourages me academically every day. If I am ever struggling with a class that an older sister had already taken, they were there to help. The semester that I received a 4.0, my sisters rewarded me with "smart cookies" at chapter and an award at Red Dress Gala. My sisters always want to see me do my best and will do anything to help me achieve my goals.
Why is it important for women to pursue careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM)? It is important that women pursue careers in STEM fields because we have so much to contribute. Diversifying the fields will really allow for a better and more advanced future.
What are your goals after graduating? I hope to find a civil engineering job with a focus on sustainability. With sustainability being an up-and-coming field, I'm excited to branch out and really make a difference in this world. My first preference would be to work in hydrology and ensure that groundwater is not polluted.