Engineer Your Career
This post is a continuation of our 2016 National Engineers Week series. To read Part 1: Ken Urbanek’s “10 Reasons I Love Engineering” please click here.
When I started my education at the University of Wyoming in the Mechanical Engineering department, I, like many burgeoning engineers, had visions of labs coats and research work in my future. However, as graduation grew nearer, I realized that if I wanted to stay and work in my hometown, I probably wouldn’t be wearing a lab coat to work. As a senior at UW, I joined the ASHRAE student chapter and became interested in pursuing a career as a Consulting Engineer. As part of my involvement in ASHRAE, I participated in “Students in Industry Day,” where students from the region travelled to Denver to meet with practicing engineers involved in ASHRAE. The engineers spent the day with the students showing them what a career as a Consulting Engineer entailed. I was paired with Paula from McFall, Konkel and Kimball Consulting Engineers, Inc. Paula was a great ambassador for the industry, and her passion for her clients and projects solidified my decision to pursue a career as a Consulting Engineer. I researched career opportunities and found that McFall, Konkel, and Kimball (who thankfully became MKK) had an office in my hometown of Cheyenne, WY. Shortly after graduation, I had my first and only job as a Consulting Engineer with MKK.
Although I was not wearing a lab coat, I quickly came to love my new career. It was fast paced, challenging and fed my deepest passion as an engineer: problem-solving. Every project provided a new and unique set of problems that required innovative and creative solutions. Moreover, the constant stream of new projects provided a seemingly endless supply of problems to be solved. Not only did I find the right career, but I also found the right company. Throughout my career at MKK, there have always been opportunities for me to guide my own career path and take on new challenges and responsibilities that allowed me to grow. My growth path has included many different roles: Design Engineer, Project Engineer, Project Manager, Commissioning Agent, Branch Manager, Director of Branch Operations, Chairman of the Board, and now President/CEO. In addition to those roles, I helped open the Billings Montana branch in 1999 and started our commissioning team in 2007.
MKK has always believed in creating opportunities for growth and supporting high performers who are looking for growth opportunities that support our company direction. MKK has evolved from a typical Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing consulting engineering firm. We have expanded our focus and expertise to include sustainable design consulting, commissioning, energy modeling, daylight modeling, measurement and verification, and post-occupancy energy management. We can provide cradle to grave energy and sustainability-focused consulting and deliver verifiable results. Our expanded focus gives engineers several career paths and opportunities to interface our industry from numerous perspectives.
Not only does MKK have physical office locations, we support telecommuting opportunities to expand our global reach. MKK also offers diversity and choice in your work/life environment through our multiple office location and support of inter-office transfers. I could not imagine a better place to work; I guess that is why I’ve been at MKK for 24 years!
About Kevin: Kevin Pope, PE, LEED AP, QCxP is MKK Consulting Engineers, Inc’s current President and CEO. With over 24 years’ experience as a Mechanical Engineer and Commissioning Professional, Kevin has the ability to think outside the box to create unique design solutions for clients. Kevin communicates with clients to ensure a clear understanding of their unique needs, helps define the project scope through the owner’s project requirements, and acts as a consultant both internally and externally. He maintains a strong team concept from project inception through completion.