Mentorship Team Spotlight: Kristen and Daisy, WTS Colorado

kristin and daisyMentoring is at the heart of the Transportation YOU initiative. Mentorship exposes girls to opportunities in transportation fields early, inspires them to set high goals, and provides girls with the tools to succeed academically and, eventually, professionally. WTS International sat down with a mentorship pair from the WTS Colorado Chapter’s Transportation YOU program—Kristen Liggett, Transportation Engineer at Muller Engineering Company, and her mentee, Daisy Sanchez, a junior at Denver School of Science and Technology, to find out more about the journey they are on together in transportation.

Daisy, what motivated you to select an engineering/transportation-related internship?

I often question the most common things: Who put this road here? Why is it that way? Who decides how big a building should be? Who is in charge of deciding where a sidewalk goes? Who is in charge of building and maintaining roads? Just questions that I grew up with as I started to notice how not everything here today existed. I didn’t really think about it too much, but when I saw the opportunity to learn about this stuff, I decided to take it and see what I could learn and maybe it would even help me determine what kind of major I may be interested in. I always question everything; nonetheless, I enjoy learning about civil engineering and how much influence civil engineers have over my daily life.

How would you describe your relationship with your mentor?

I really enjoy being with my mentor. She’s very good-humored and admirable. She is an open and approachable person. Kristin is easy to talk to and connect with, and I found that she is very trustworthy and supportive. We shared many stories about our own lives and got to know each other very well over the past few months.

Kristen, what motivated you to be a mentor for Transportation YOU?

I spoke with others who had been mentors for Transportation YOU and it sounded exciting. I was intrigued by the idea of teaching someone about what I do and encouraging them to consider studying engineering in school. I also thought it would be a good learning experience in figuring out how to teach others about how I perform my job.

What advice would you give to other women in WTS who are considering becoming a mentor?

Do not be intimidated by the amount of work the mentorship appears to have. It is important to realize how rewarding this program is. I was most surprised by how much I got out of the mentorship and how easily I was able to keep my mentee busy with tasks.

These tasks were designed to teach her about my field and we made exciting discoveries together! I also learned about teaching others who have less experience than me. It showed me where my strengths are, as well as where I had less experience in areas that I felt strong in.

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