Omar Masood is an engineer with Parametrix’s Portland Community Building Team. He has nine years of industry experience and has worked at Parametrix for one year. He recently earned his Professional Engineer (PE) license. We asked him about his career, favorite project, and advice for others pursuing their PE license.
What inspired you to pursue a career in engineering?
I always loved math, physics, and earth science classes in high school, which led me to studying civil engineering at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. The idea that engineers assess important needs and provide efficient solutions across different facets of society made me want to become a civil engineer. Knowing the design effort that went into a roadway or sidewalk that people use all the time without realizing how much it takes to construct that way makes civil engineers the unsung heroes of society. Efficient infrastructure means every other part of society becomes more efficient in their contribution to our communities.
What is your next career goal now that you’ve earned your PE license?
My career goal is to continue to work on new and different kinds of projects. Licensure plays a role in making that a possibility, but in this specific case I want to dive deeper into Data Center Design.
Tell us about a project you’re currently working on.
I am currently working on Data Centers in the Pacific Northwest. These projects require a unique mindset in that while most civil engineering projects are seen/used/appreciated by the public or people every day, data center sites and features are most certainly not. However, instead of building infrastructure for the public to use, these projects improve the infrastructure that powers the devices people use and benefit from every day.
What advice do you have for others pursuing their PE license?
Engineers in school often believe they have to have their plan figured out for their professional career. Sometimes, this takes the form of knowing exactly what company and work they want to do. Oftentimes, it means assigning timelines to getting their Engineer in Training certification, work experience, and then Professional Engineer licenses. I advise those with a rigid schedule to understand that everyone’s career is different, taking turns and shifting in ways people often don’t anticipate. This also applies to getting licensed in that it may take more time, or they may get licensed in jurisdictions/other engineering fields that they never thought they would. Roll with it and have fun!
Anything else you would like to add?
It’s super important to work in an environment and surround yourself with people/company who invest in your growth, both professional and personal. When you have an environment like that, you’ll likely be able to take your career to heights you didn’t realize possible.