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Hey wonderful people! How do you manage your time effectively? If you could look back on things what would you do differently?
I have a 11 month old baby and Id love to hear from other moms who made Engineering work. What would you have done differently from schooling to career choices if you had another go? Any part time career paths for moms?thank you 🙏 😊 thank you.
I think your question is very important and I'm glad you are thinking about it now while your daughter is 11 months old and not when she is much older when it is too late to turn back the clock. I am a municipal engineer who has worked in the Engineering Consulting environment since 2005. I was lucky to live in Australia when my babies were born, where the culture is different; most of my female engineering colleagues took a full year off work and then only returned 2 - 3 days per week for the following year(s). We are not there yet in the USA, but we are definitely making inroads for new mothers and fathers to make different work-life balance choices. I have been working 32 hours per week from my home office since I moved to the USA in 2016. I had to negotiate the part-time arrangement with my employer and was the only one on my team in a part-time role. Now there are 2 other new mothers in my team making similar choices. My son is now 13 and my daughter is 9 and they still need a lot of my time and support! At this point, I still work 4 days a week, predominantly from home because I need to be there for all the after school activities, etc.
That being said, I certainly won't tell you there aren't trade-offs; there always will be in life. I can see other men and women who have not taken time off for childcare who are more advanced in their career than me, and I have certainly missed out on some training and leadership opportunities over the years. It has to be that way; as much as our society strives for it, it is impossible to "have it all". But I wouldn't trade any of the time I've had with my kids during their formative years. They will be off to College soon and I'll still have LOTS of years left to focus on my career. As long as you can keep your skills up to date and provide meaningful effort for your employer, and stay engaged in interesting work, I can't imagine anything better than the flexibility to be there for your daughter. And I think this is the time to do it! There is a shortage of Engineers in the industry at this time; my experience has been that if you have good credentials and demonstrate that you are proficient and effective working remotely, employers will make concessions to keep you on their team. Good luck with it all. Enjoy the rideJ
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Samantha, to a creative mind – the thread title can invoke many different lines of thinking:
If I knew better or different . . .
If I had someone on my back . . .
If I had been loved and cared for . . .
If people around me behaved differently . . .
If I had been informed differently or were able to see things through my own lens . . .
If my personal assessments would not have emotional overtone . . .
If I had done differently . . .
If mutual respect would have been the norm . . .
So on – and so forth . . .
The reality is that such ifs – and the consequences of making decisions based on them – in one way or another – define life. The interdependent flux of life in time, and in the space where one lives – the spacetime – defines the progress. When we are able to ask ifs – we begin to learn – but sometimes learning at the huge cost of making mistakes (when such mistakes are made by seats of power – the entire dependent population suffers). Eventually though – they help us minimizing ifs.
I always get fascinated by reading ancient wisdom and teachings – they are real and authentic – not contaminated by greeds of modern-day hustle-bustle – that have been invented by un-heedful theories and what not – that are more often than not incompatible with Natural laws and harmony.
Ancient wisdom tells us to remain calm – and be conscientious, heedful and diligent before we embark on making decisions – by making all efforts to lead our own life, not someone else's. Perhaps – many of us know this, but more often than not we fail to practice it. Therefore – ifs begin to appear.
Appear somewhat hard stuff? But important, nonetheless – wouldn't you say? Thought of sharing them to add to other responses to your queries.I like your using an Emoji – the universal symbol of humility and peaceful greeting. I have seen it for the first time in Collaborate ASCE.
Dr. Dilip K Barua, PhD