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As part of our Member Appreciation Program, we are showcasing a member in our bi-monthly Board Member Spotlight. Our member spotlight recognizes members for their outstanding contributions to the profession and our local communities. For any questions regarding the program please email




Nestor Godinez


Project Engineer
SLR International Corporation
Internal Activities Chair
ASCE Orange County Younger Member Forum


Where did you grow up?
Orange County

What made you want to become an engineer?
Since I was a child I have always been good with math and science and I was very curious about the world around me. I wanted to know how things worked and I was fascinated as I found out how things worked. Engineering was a good fit for my interests. At first I wanted to be an architect but then I realized that I didn’t have the drawing capabilities.

Favorite hobbies, sports, and interests outside of engineering?
My favorite sport is soccer. I enjoy playing soccer, going to the gym, hanging out with friends, dancing, seeing new places, eating out at good eateries.

Finish this sentence: On Sunday mornings, you can usually find me...

What college(s) did you attend? Can you list your degrees, any honors, and involvement in engineering organizations during school?
I got my B.S. from UC Irvine in 2007. I graduated Magna Cum Laude. I was involved in ASCE on my 3rd and 4th year. In my 4th year I was a Steel Bridge Co-Captain. We went to Nationals and were the top bridge from the Pacific Southwest Region. I got my M.S. from CSU Fullerton in 2009. I helped out the CSUF steel bridge team as an advisor.


Describe your responsibilities and some significant projects.
I am a staff engineer. I work on environmental remediation projects and mine planning and environmental impact reports. The projects I work in are national and international projects. One of my biggest projects is the ongoing environmental cleanup of Honolulu Harbor in Hawaii which was impacted by petroleum contamination from historical tank farms in the harbor. One of my other significant projects is the planning and environmental impact reporting of a proposed gold mine in Canada.

What project are you currently working on and what have you accomplished/what are your tasks? 

What is your favorite part about being a Civil Engineer?
My favorite part of being a Civil Engineer is problem solving and learning to do things that I didn’t know how to do before.

What skills do you find most valuable to focus on in your career?
The skills I find most valuable to focus on in my career are time management, attention to detail, and report writing.

What drew you to your specific career path? If you could start your career differently, what would you do differently?
I kind of just by chance fell into my current career path. At my workplace we are a small firm and that has allowed me learn and be involved in a little bit of everything. I do not consider myself a specialist yet in a particular aspect of civil engineering yet. If I could restart my career I probably would have chosen the public sector as I do like the idea of public service and improving the life of the community.


How/Why did you get involved? Why did you choose to stay involved?
One day I realized that I did not know any other young engineers and that I had no idea what others were doing with their careers. So I decided to go to an event, a general meeting. I chose to attend more events because the events were fun and everyone was friendly and inviting. I was “convinced” aka volunteered by past president Ravi to organize that year’s soccer tournament and that got me an appetite for organizing the club’s social events.

How has ASCE impacted your work and/or what is your favorite benefit of your involvement?
My favorite benefit of my involvement is all the new young friends in the civil engineering profession that I have made.

Who is someone you Admire and Why?

If you have one piece of advice to give to young professionals what would it be?

Lastly, what would be your personal motto?


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