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Celebrating Engineering’s Far-Reaching Impact

The far-reaching impact of modern engineering on day-to-day life is extraordinary. Everything from clean drinking water and efficient roadway networks to advanced medical systems and modern communication technology is made possible by engineering. At Snyder & Associates, however, we pride ourselves on our ability to think beyond engineering to deliver solutions that improve the quality of life for our clients.

To achieve this, we wholeheartedly embrace the belief that our forward-thinking professionals are our greatest asset, proactively addressing all challenges with our client’s immediate and future needs in mind. Meeting those future needs also means guiding the next generation of engineers as they learn and grow — all to maintain the high level of quality our clients expect.

To better explain this vision, four seasoned members of the Snyder & Associates engineering team shared their thoughts on the profession, including their transitioning roles into mentorship positions, the projects that bring them the most pride, and their reasons for making Snyder & Associates their long-term career “home.”

Question & Answer with Engineering Professionals

All of you have worked on and led countless projects throughout your career and, in many cases, have seen your responsibilities transition to more of a mentorship role for less experienced engineers. How has that aspect changed how you approach a project?

Elizabeth Hunter Contact Box White Circle Headshot

Engineers are not the greatest at being delegators. I think this is a skill that you learn after you have been working for a while. I always try to approach projects in a manner where we break them down into smaller tasks so that when I explain where a young engineer should head, it isn’t too overwhelming for them. I want them to work at it but not get too frustrated they give up. Part of learning is living through challenges. I’m not particularly eager to give them the answers when they are challenged. I ask more questions to guide them to find the answers independently. A good engineer is also resourceful, and this helps them remember to use their resources. — Elizabeth Hunter, P.E., AICP, LEED AP



Nate Carhoff Contact Box White Circle Headshot


Early in my career, I enjoyed doing the work, figuring out design problems, and creating a solid plan for the contractor to build. Progressing to the level of project management, the responsibilities of completing the project design and plans have transitioned mainly to junior staff members. I now look at projects through the lens of continued staff development, aligning design tasks with staff experience and career goals. — Nate Carhoff, P.E.



Having experienced various projects, what one project (or type of project) makes you the proudest? Why?

Lindsay Beaman Contact Box White Circle Headshot

One of my favorite projects was early on in my career and lasted long enough to span many early engineering development stages thoroughly. I was tasked to help design a mechanical wastewater treatment plant, and my mentor allowed me the flexibility to learn and try innovative ideas while sharing his lifelong experiences. I didn’t always understand, but as I progressed through the design and was tasked with construction observation, much of what we’d accomplished together became so fascinatingly clear. I was so proud to see the project from conception to completion and the opportunities I got to dial in the operational parameters upon start-up. — Lindsay Beaman, P.E., Cedar Rapids Business Unit Leader



Todd Knox white circle cutout headshot


Being involved in the traffic field, I am most proud of the projects’ relatively quick impact on the traveling public. We are on the cutting edge of what roadway projects should be, designing how the roadway should operate and, sometimes, using the system after construction is completed. Typically, once any project starts, impacts on safety and operations to the traveling public are in place within a few years, some as quickly as a few days. So, it is hard to separate one project or one type of project when I can make an impact quickly. — Todd Knox P.E., PTOE


Several of you have been with Snyder & Associates for most of your careers. What has been the overarching factor of why you’ve stayed with the company for so long?

I have been with Snyder for about 5.5 years, but this is where I am staying. I love the variety of projects I get to work on. My co-workers are great people who also work hard on everything they do. When everyone is working together, it makes the projects come together smoothly and has better outcomes for our clients. Snyder has some of the most intelligent subject matter experts I have met in my 25-year career as an engineer. — Elizabeth Hunter, P.E., AICP, LEED AP

The entirety of my career has been with Snyder & Associates, which is a testament to my love for the type of services our company provides and, more importantly, to the people I work with. Even on my worst days, I have the support of numerous professionals eager to have my back, many of whom I consider more as a family than a co-worker. — Lindsay Beaman, P.E.

For me, it is the variety of work we do and the ability to shape my career around my interests. I have had the privilege to be involved in projects as small as solving a local sidewalk or drainage concern to large multi-million-dollar infrastructure projects that take years to complete. In our group, there are no dictated silos, we can specialize in certain areas of our interest, or work on a variety of project types throughout the year. The company culture, compensation, and benefits package are also very high on my list of reasons I plan to retire at Snyder. — Nate Carhoff, P.E.

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