Employee Spotlight

Angie in Columbia

What is a typical day like for you?

There really isn’t a ‘typical’ day for me and that is one of the things I love about my job. One day I may be in southeastern North Carolina working with a client on assessing damage from a natural disaster, like Hurricane Matthew, and the next day I may be in South Carolina working with some of our aviation clients. It really is a unique opportunity that I have to be involved in all aspects of what our company does.

What are some of your favorite things about coming to work each day?

Since I don’t work in any one particular office, I think being able to work with so many of our great employees is something I truly enjoy. I also love helping our clients solve problems. It is rewarding when you are able to see all the work that you put into a project lead to a successful completion that not only benefits a client but also their community and the environment. So much of what we do each day can’t be ‘seen’ by the general public, but without the infrastructure being in place and working properly, their lives would definitely be affected.

What has been your favorite project thus far?

That is a tough one because there are so many, but I think it may have to be the Cape Fear Farmers Market in Elizabethtown, NC. We were able to leverage a significant amount of grant funding to redevelop an old grocery store in the heart of downtown Elizabethtown and turn it into a beautiful farmers market. This one project has been the catalyst for a number of other projects that have allowed this small town in Bladen County to flourish where many small towns are failing.

What’s special about your office or team?

As I said, all of WK Dickson is my team. That itself is special. I get to see just how talented all of our employees are and get involved on so many exciting projects across multiple disciplines.

What’s your next career goal and how is WK Dickson helping you get there?

Well, I have been at this for more than 25 years now so I suppose I’m in the second phase of my career. WK Dickson has allowed me to get involved in professional organizations and serve in a leadership capacity within those organizations. I also have the opportunity to mentor our young professionals and help our company continue to grow. The company took a chance on me almost 10 years ago because I wanted some flexibility of not working in a particular office and that has definitely allowed me to take my career in the direction that I wanted and the support with that continues.

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

Those who know me know I am a Clemson University graduate and a HUGE Clemson fan – all things Clemson. In the fall, I’m usually at a Clemson football game and then the rest of the year, there are a few other sports going on as well. I enjoy working out and also spending time with my daughter, Holly, who will graduate from Clemson in May of 2017 with a degree in environmental engineering.

alex_b_spotlight.jpgWhat is a typical day like for you?

Every day I come to work I am excited for what the day has planned for me. When I arrive I typically join my fellow water and sewer civil designers in our cubicle area where we catch up on recent sports, news, and dinner recipes we made the night before (we love food). I usually work on 2-4 different projects any given day. Question and answers pertaining to design standards, CAD, and client preferences usually bounce around my group all day long as we work through our projects. We very much enjoy staying communicative because it increases efficiency (we are using the best idea based off of our collaborated minds), we all continue to learn things daily from either our own obstacles or another designers, and it makes our day go by fast. Our Program Manager will meet with me or another designer, along with a Technical Manager or a PE at least once a day to go over major topics and design changes.

What are some of your favorite things about coming to work each day?

I really enjoy the people I work with. We joke around all day about all kind of things. I also usually get a game of ping pong in once a week with a co-worker. On top of ping pong, our administration tries to keep office competitions and games frequent, including corn-hole, Super Bowl bets, March Madness Brackets, homemade cookie competitions, pumpkin carving competitions, and many more. Another enjoyable part of my day is when free lunch is provided. We usually have a "lunch & learn" available 2-3 times a month with various vendors coming in to market their products, occasional staff meetings with the entire office, and meetings that run through lunch with clients. Food always makes me happy.

What has been your favorite project thus far?

My favorite project thus far is the U-4405 Raeford Rd for Fayetteville Public Works. I have been the most involved in this project compared to any other projects I have had before during my new career. I have enjoyed this project because I have a full understanding of the purpose, the development, and the final product. This project is also interesting because it is such a big task (roughly $13 million construction cost). It is exciting to be a part of a project that you know has so much impact on our company’s success. The “fun” part of this project is having to work with so many different people. It entails proposed water, sewer, gas, power, and roadway infrastructure. Having such a complex project requires a ton of communications and coordination, which I find to be fun when you effectively accomplish the tasks you need to complete because you look at yourself and get kind of impressed with what all you’ve just done.

What’s special about your office or team?

I feel privileged to work with the people I work with in my team. My team includes a Program Manager that I consider to be one of the most organized, professional, and thorough Project Managers I have ever met. I also work with a very personable and easy to approach Technical Manager, that has over 15 years of experience, and is ALWAYS willing to help and stay however late he needs to until you feel comfortable or a task has been complete. The Project Engineers in our group are very dedicated, determined, and ambitious leaders who have their characteristics trickle down to us designers. I also work with two very experienced civil designers that sit right next to me every day, both whom have worked over 15 years in design, are very good at what they do, and are also always there to help. Leaving work experience aside, everyone in our group is very fun and social. We have no problems getting together. We have a comfortable enough relationship where we even talk on the weekends and shoot each other texts about random things, even though there may be 20 yr+ age gaps, we still act as friends.

What’s your next career goal and how is WK Dickson helping you get there?

My next goal is to become a Project Engineer for WK Dickson. The firm is helping me achieve this by providing financial support to take the PE Exam, and take other courses to prepare myself. Additionally, my technical manager or another PE will have me sit in with them as they are working on project management related work (cost estimates, quantity take-offs, analysis, etc.) to observe what they do and ask any questions that I may have to further prepare me for the work I will be given once I'm a project engineer.

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

When I am not working I enjoy attending a lot of sporting events with my friends and family. I cheer for the Carolina Panthers, Charlotte Hornets, NCSU Basketball, NCSU Football, and NCSU Baseball. I also love the water. During the summer I travel to our vacation home on a lake almost every weekend where I just soak up the sun, or you may find me wakeboarding, surfing, or even barefoot waterskiing. I am also a big music junkie and attend a lot of music festivals and concerts during the Spring and Summer ranging from all different types of genres. I really enjoy travelling and when I do I never go to the same place twice.

Katie in Corporate

What is a typical day like for you?

When I get into the office, I get my coffee and dive right into checking the five e-mail boxes I manage. In accounting, there’s always a standard script you follow throughout the month, but there are constantly new and even urgent variables and/or projects that need time and attention too. Part of my day is unpredictable so I’m always busy. Time flies by quickly.

What are some of your favorite things about coming to work each day?

Knowing that WK Dickson understands that a happy and appreciated employee gives back quality work and time well spent. I like the interpersonal relationships I have built with clients and people in our others offices – it makes my job easier. A boss can make or break your enjoyment at a job and I am so grateful for mine. I love that there is no drama here - everyone is here to work in a professional & courteous manner.

What has been your favorite project thus far?

One of the reasons I was hired was to utilize my MSOD and assist in improving the processes in the accounting department. Specifically, I have enjoyed revamping how we manage current and new sub-consultants, their contracts, and their compliance with our insurance coverage requirements.

What’s special about your office or team?

The personalities on my team gel well and we respect each other’s contributions. We’re supported and mentored. A work/life balance is a very important emphasis. The office has random surprise snacks for morale boosting, ping pong and corn hole to play during lunch, and even jam sessions with folks who play the guitar, the drums, and sing.

What’s your next career goal and how is WK Dickson helping you get there?

I’d like to participate in the growth and development of WK Dickson, specifically on an individual and group level. I don’t know what that would look like right now, but I am currently working on an Individual Development Program with my boss and HR to map it out.

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

I like to dabble in a lot of things that are focused on creativity, nature, and natural healing. I enjoy playing the piano and singing, learning and utilizing essential oils, meditating, sharing chemical free cleaning options with others, practicing Reiki, playing with my dogs, camping, hiking, tennis, Netflix binging, etc.

Bill in Charleston

What is a typical day like for you?

My days are extremely varied. One day I might be on the road visiting clients, the next might be in the office working on a proposal for a new project, then managing and performing work on a wastewater project, or perhaps conducting a project progress meeting with a client, etc.

What are some of your favorite things about coming to work each day?

The people – we have so many great people that I enjoy being around. Also, every day is different and there are always lots of challenges that make each day interesting and rewarding.

What has been your favorite project thus far?

City of Georgetown WWTP Modifications. The client has been struggling with several issues at the WWTP and is under a SCDHEC Consent Order. Being part of a great team to address the plant issues and help bring them back into compliance has been a lot of fun and very rewarding.

What’s special about your office or team?

We have genuinely good people with excellent capabilities and experience. We strive to be our client’s trusted adviser and partner, and we can tackle just about any water and wastewater issue or problem.

What’s your next career goal and how is WK Dickson helping you get there?

I am very happy serving as the Charleston Regional Office Manager and also as a Project Manager, and my goal is to grow the Charleston office by first growing our water & wastewater group, and eventually diversifying and adding additional WK Dickson service offerings to Charleston. WK Dickson and our leadership team are strongly committed to our clients, and that commitment is key to strengthening our relationships and growing our business. WK Dickson also has excellent marketing and proposal writing support, funding expertise, GIS and other non-traditional engineering service offerings that are very important to our clients.

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

When I’m not at work, I spend the majority of my time with my family. I have coached various sports for all three of my kids, and still help coach my younger son’s school basketball team (2017 Berkeley, Charleston & Dorchester Counties - Trident League 5th Grade Champs!). My wife and I enjoy running and traveling together, and we’ve done several combined “running trips” together over the past several years including marathons in New York City and Catalina Island, CA.