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Engineer Intern Spotlight

The Board of Licensure would like to shine a spotlight on some of the talented young Engineer Interns enrolled to practice in the State of Mississippi.  Enrollees featured on this page are selected randomly.

October 2021 Engineer Intern Spotlight: Kevin Carlisle, EI

Kevin Carlisle, EI

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Engineer Intern Kevin Carlisle.  Kevin works with Ulliman Schutte Construction in building and renovating water treatment infrastructure.  We like Kevin's advice to keep things simple and to enjoy the ride.  Sometimes in life we get so caught up in the doing of things that we forget to live. Thanks for the reminder to stop and smell the roses Kevin.  We needed that.

Learn more about Kevin and why professional licensure is important to him below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

 "I wanted to be an engineer so that my work could benefit as many people as possible. I’ve also always enjoyed providing solutions to problems for people."

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses? 

"I officially became an EI in May 2021"

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc.)? Stay the course!

Keep it simple and enjoy the ride. If you do your part, everything will come in time. You shouldn’t worry about things you can’t control."

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?  

"Don’t be intimidated and go for it! The best way to learn is to dive right into the deep end."

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / or surveyor.

"I was recently a part of a team that managed the renovation of a large wastewater treatment plant. Seeing the challenge of maintaining plant operations while construction took place demonstrated to me the importance of Engineers in everyone’s day to day lives."   

Q6. Why is professional licensure important to you?

"A professional licensure is a demonstration of competence. This is one of the easiest ways for me to prove my skills as an engineer."



September 2021 Engineer Intern Spotlight: Noah Brandon, EI

Noah Brandon, EI

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Engineer Intern Noah Brandon.  We were encouraged by Noah's sincerity and honesty in his responses as well as his commitment to not give up!  We also love his understanding of the importance of professional licensure not just in engineering but in other applicable fields as well.  Well said Noah and thank you for sharing with us.

Learn more about Noah and why professional licensure is important to him below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

"Coming out of high school, I knew I would pursue a degree in Engineering.  I have always enjoyed science, math, and working on projects.  I started out in Petroleum Engineering, and I quickly realized it was not the type of Engineering for me.  So, after joining the Mississippi National Guard and coming back to MSU, I switched to Civil Engineering and never looked back.  I enjoy Civil Engineering projects, and I feel very accomplished when I see one of my designs or some of my work come to fruition."

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses? 

"After passing the F.E. Exam in March and graduating in May, I was just recently licensed on June 8, 2021.  I currently hold no other state licensures."

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc.)? Stay the course!

"I would tell my younger self to keep up the hard work.  I spent many early mornings and late nights questioning my educational and career choices, but they are already beginning to pay off.  I would also advise myself to ask as many questions as you can and never stop expanding your knowledge, gain as much experience as possible."

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?  

"I would tell young people interested in STEM careers to open their mind to all the possibilities available in STEM-related careers.  There are so many options, so I would advise young folks to research whichever specific field interests them and pursue it.  Try shadowing someone with a job in that area, and pick the career you love, not just the one that pays the most."

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / or surveyor.

"A project I have recently worked on is an update of the Airport Layout Plan for Grenada Municipal Airport.  The report determines future funding and projects for the airport, so it is important to ensure the current and future needs of the airport staff and users are met.  One of the cool things about this project is that it combines my National Guard career as an Aviation Officer / Pilot with my civilian career as an Engineer.  I love Civil Engineering because the projects we work on affect the health, safety, and welfare of the public every day.  I get so much satisfaction out of seeing completed projects and how they positively affect my community."   

Q6. Why is professional licensure important to you?

"Professional licensure is important not only in Engineering, but also in many other professions.  Firstly, it ensures not just anyone can claim to be capable of what the license certifies us or another professional to do, therefore protecting our careers and the work we do.  Secondly, the clients, customers, patients, etc. of professionally licensed people know they are receiving services from someone who is authorized to perform that work by a licensure board with specific requirements.  Therefore, professional licensure is important to me as both a licensed professional, as well as a civilian who relies on other professionals."



August 2021 Engineer Intern Spotlight: Thomas Fortune, EI

Thomas Fortune, EI

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Engineer Intern Thomas Fortune.  Thomas is a graduate of the University of Mississippi with a Bachelor of Science degree in Geological Engineering.  Thomas works for Kiewitt Foundations Company.  We were inspired by his words and credit him with the Quote of the Day. 

QOTD: "There will always be someone smarter than you, but what you lack in intelligence you can make up for with a strong work ethic and a positive demeanor."  

Words to live by Thomas.  Thanks for sharing them with us.  We see a great future ahead of you.

Learn more about Thomas and why professional licensure is important to him below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

Engineering was a natural fit for me, I have always been drawn to the design, construction, and architecture of buildings. Growing up my favorite subject in school was science. It's funny because from a young age I have been collecting rocks and minerals, as a result Geological Engineering was a match made in heaven for me. 

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I have been licensed in the State of Mississippi since June, 2021. My goal is to one day obtain PE licensure in multiple states.

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc.)? Stay the course!

I would tell my younger self there will always be someone smarter than you, but what you lack in intelligence you can make up for with a strong work ethic and a positive demeanor. 

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

I can not stress enough how rewarding a STEM career can be. It allowed me to have an internship during my college days, from which I was able to receive a job offer before even graduating college. I was hired by a wonderful company to a position that has me travel the country doing what I love. The most rewarding part about my career is that it was not given to me, I earned it. To the young people that might be reading this, you have the opportunity to earn it as well. Do not let anyone tell you that you are not smart enough, that the curriculum required is impossible, or a career in STEM would be miserable. If you have the will-power and give maximum effort you can do it, too. A STEM career is an amazing career path to choose, because while markets fluctuate, STEM careers are steady because like healthcare, there will always be a need. 

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / or surveyor.

I am a field engineer for Kiewit Foundations Company. My current assignment is working on the Central 70 Infrastructure Project in Denver, Colorado. This project exemplifies everything I love about being an engineer. It allowed me to move to a new city and make new friends. My job duties consist of assisting with construction and drilling operations. This project is rewarding because as engineers our work is making it safer for the community, as this roadway is travelled by 350,000 people a day. 

Q6. Why is professional licensure important to you?

Professional licensure, especially the Professional Engineer licensure, has been my goal to obtain since my first day at Ole Miss. Not only does it certify that I am competent and qualified as an engineer but it is also a landmark achievement for my effort I have put in for the past 5+ years.




July 2021 Engineer Intern Spotlight: McKenna Patterson, EI

McKenna Patterson, EI

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Engineer Intern McKenna Patterson.  McKenna works with Brightline Group In Raymond, Mississippi and is a May 2020 graduate of Mississippi State University where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering.  We are inspired my McKenna's love of what she id doing and her desire to help others through her work.  

Learn more about McKenna and why professional licensure is important to her below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

"I chose engineering because of my early love for physics and problem-solving in high school."

Q2. How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses? 

"I just recently became licensed after passing the FE exam in April of this year."

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc.)? Stay the course!

"There will be high hills and low valleys in engineering school, but it will all be worth it in the end when you finally begin your career doing something you LOVE!"

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?  

"Use all the resources available to you, especially your peers and mentors. There is always something new to be learned, take advantage of any opportunity you have to develop your engineering skills and knowledge."

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / or surveyor.

"I am an engineer for an energy efficiency consulting company and we work with different utilities to help quantify how their customers are saving energy. I am passionate about helping people realize the ways they can save energy in their homes and businesses, and working on these various projects allows me to channel this passion in a professional setting."   

Q6. Why is professional licensure important to you?

"Professional licensure is important to me not only because it is a prestigious recognition, but because it is an outlet for professional development and networking with other engineers across the state of Mississippi."




May 2021 Engineer Intern Spotlight: Samuel A. Rust, EI

Samuel Rust, EI

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Engineer Intern Samuel Rust.  Samuel is an Engineer Intern with the Mississippi Department of Transportation where he works on road and bridge projects.  He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Mississippi State University and he's a Dak Prescott fan (but who isn't).  We heard that he might even have Dak's autograph.  Lucky him.

Learn more about Samuel and why professional licensure is important to him below:

Q1.  Why did you choose engineering or surveying?

As a kid, I was always fascinated with construction, whether it was building with Lego blocks or making forts in the back yard. I chose Civil Engineering because it allows me to help build projects that make a difference across the state. It’s very satisfying to know the roads I design will have a positive impact on millions of Americans in the decades to come.

Q2.  How long have you been licensed in the State of Mississippi and do you also hold other state licenses?

I have been an Engineer Intern for 3 years.

Q3. What advice would you give to your younger self (HS grad, college grad, etc)?

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Spend more time building relationships because your classmates in college will be your coworkers after graduation. Oh, and find some way to meet Dak Prescott and get his autograph.

Q4. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

Stay curious and persevere. Engineering work is challenging but well worth it.

Q5.  Tell us about a recent project you worked on that exemplifies why you love being an engineer and / surveyor.  

I recently worked on a job where MDOT will replace an old bridge with a new bridge that includes a pedestrian sidewalk. This job was satisfying since it will allow people to safely access the historic downtown without risking being hit by a log truck on the bridge.

Q6. Why is professional licensure important to you?

Professional licensure is important to me because of how much the public is affected by Civil Engineering projects. Becoming licensed gives the public a sense of security that their roads, bridges, water quality, etc are safe to use.




April 2021 Engineer Intern Spotlight: Reid Edward Haygood, EI

Reid Edward Haygood, EI

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Engineer Intern Reid Edward Haygood.  Reid graduated from Mississippi State university in 2017 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering.  He currently works with Neel-Schaffer in Jackson, MS.  Learn more about Reid and why professional licensure is important to him below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering?

In high school, my dad encouraged me to start researching different careers that I might be interested in. He helped me by setting up several shadowing opportunities and a few meetings with department heads at MSU. When I met with Dr. Dennis Truax, Department Head of MSU’s School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, he showcased all the great career opportunities civil engineering provided. I’ll never forget Dr. Truax asking me “What do you want to leave behind when you are six feet under?” I realized I wanted to use my career to rebuild America’s aging infrastructure and leave behind quality roadway projects that will serve my community long after I am gone.

Q2. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

Working in a STEM career will require lifelong learning, so explore the world around you as much as you can. I would encourage you to find something that you are curious about and research how it was built, how it works, or why it was built the way it was built. There are great resources such as the Smarter Everyday You Tube channel or MythBusters TV show that make learning and asking questions very exciting!

Q3. Tell us where you see yourself or hope to be in two to five years.

In five years, I hope to be a Professional Engineer that has mastered the OpenRoads design software. I hope to establish myself as a hardworking, competent Engineer that my clients can depend on for quality roadway design services.

Q4. Why is professional licensure important to you?

Professional licensure is important to me because it requires engineers to put the health, safety, and welfare of the public first. When something is designed by a licensed Professional Engineer, whether it be a bridge or a water supply system, I can have confidence that it is safe to use and that it was designed by someone who knew what they were doing.




March 2021 Engineer Intern Spotlight: Hannah Grace Prater Denson, EI

Hannah Grace Prater Denson, EI

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Engineer Intern Hannah Grace Prater Denson.  Hannah is a graduate of the University of Mississippi where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering.  Three years later she received a Master of Engineering degree from Mississippi State University.  If you are like us, you are probably wondering who Hannah is rooting for when the Egg Bowl rolls around.  One thing is for sure; either way she wins.    

Learn more about Hannah and why professional licensure is important to her below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering?

Engineering honestly chose me. I started college with the intent of doing something completely different and using a general engineering degree to get there. However, once I started taking the introduction to engineering classes I felt a connection to civil engineering. The fact that you can imagine (or design), build, use, and study a road or a bridge and take a simple thought from paper designs all the way through to the construction really appealed to me.

Q2. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

To younger people interested STEM careers, I would encourage them to take a “safe” risk and pursue a career in engineering. I had not been exposed to many STEM career options outside of medical field professions, however, I chose to take a different path and found a career that is truly fulfilling and allows me to serve my community as I work and grow as an engineer.

Q3. Tell us where you see yourself or hope to be in two to five years.

In 2 – 5 years, I hope to be happy and still working on projects that positively impact the traveling public.

Q4. Why is professional licensure important to you?

I believe that licensure is important to hold us accountable and to act as a reminder that the designs you create have greater impact to the public. I appreciate the requirements needed to obtain licensure, so that those who hold the title are aware and prepared for the responsibility that comes with being licensed.




February 2021 Engineer Intern Spotlight: Zachary Michael Horton, EI

Zachary Horton, EI

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Engineer Intern Zachary Michael Horton.  Zachary is a graduate of Thee ........ Jackson State University where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering. We love that Zachary seeks to and is inspiring others with his life and actions and we appreciate the strength of his responses to our inquiry.  We see great things in his future.

Learn more about Zach and why professional licensure is important to him below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering?

I chose engineering because in high school I excelled in mathematics and science and had an interest in helping people.  While continuing my education and learning the necessary skills in these aspects,  civil engineering seemed best suited for me.

Q2. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

I would encourage interested young people to pursue a career in STEM.  Do not be afraid to reach out to others for help, whether on an academic or professional level. The journey is not easy, but the outcome is phenomenal.

Q3. Tell us where you see yourself or hope to be in two to five years.

I see myself continuing my career with the Mississippi Department of Transportation and developing as a professional engineer.  I hope to influence others to follow their dreams, whatever they may be.

Q4. Why is professional licensure important to you?

I feel that professional licensure should be every EIT's goal. It ensures that we are highly competent in engineering and holds us accountable for making the world better. I respect and work with many engineers that serve the public and demonstrate these professional standards.




January 2021 Engineer Intern Spotlight: Megan Elizabeth Finney, EI

Megan Elizabeth Finney, EI

The Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors would like to shine a spotlight on Engineer Intern Megan Elizabeth Finney.  Megan is a graduate of Mississippi State University where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering and she is currently pursuing a Master of Science in Civil Engineering.  We are impressed with Megan's plans for the future as well as her commitment to continuing her education.  We see a PhD in her future. 

Learn more about Megan and why professional licensure is important to her below:

Q1. Why did you choose engineering?

I was that kid that thought memorizing multiplication tables and trigonometric relationships was fun; so I knew I needed to pick a career that involved using and applying math. I also loved the idea of being able to positively impact those around you, and engineers are continually given opportunities to make people’s lives easier and safer.

Q2. What would you say to young people, who might be interested in STEM careers such as engineering or surveying?

I would tell them to go for it! I have never regretted my choice of major or job. There are so many opportunities within engineering, so there is something for everyone. Personally, I think it is amazing and extremely rewarding to be able to work on a project, see it come to life, and be able to visit the site once construction is completed.

Q3. Tell us where you see yourself or hope to be in two to five years.

I see myself continuing to learn new things from my coworkers, being able to take on more responsibilities as an EI, and ultimately gaining my PE license!

Q4. Why is professional licensure important to you?

I think professional licensure holds engineers to a higher standard and ensures they are consistently producing their best work and maintaining the health, safety and welfare of the public.