Marc Heublein: Civil Engineering grad combines love of math and physics to create perfect career
With high ambition for his future, Marc Heublein ‘17 wanted to make a difference but didn’t know how. He decided to begin his post-secondary journey and see where it’d take him.
“I grew up in Hamilton and didn’t know what I wanted to do after high school,” he says. “I thought going into business and enrolling at Mohawk would be a good start.”
Initially, Marc enrolled in the General Business program at Mohawk. During this time, he was also working as a general labourer, finding his passion for building. He graduated in 2011 with an educational foundation, but no solid direction as to what was next.
“I then worked out west, on the railroad before returning to Hamilton,” he says. ”While I was out there, I knew the travelling was not sustainable if I wanted to have a family. I knew I needed to take the next step but wasn’t sure what that was.”
Through trial and error, Marc discovered the next step in his career pathway: return to Mohawk for a different type of program. Things became clearer as he continued his education.
Marc says, “I initially pursued the Architectural Technology program, but things changed after my first year. One of my professors said I should switch to Civil Engineering. I realized I love math and physics is what I was inclined to and naturally understood.”
Mohawk’s Civil Engineering program teaches students the basics of civil infrastructure systems by delving into municipal and construction aspects of the engineering field. Students learn key skills that assist in design of structures, building and construction, project scheduling, estimating and management and the science behind it all.
After Marc switched programs, he was in his element. He was headed for university to pursue an engineering degree after Mohawk. But everything changed once his co-op began.
Marc says, “I had a fantastic co-op experience. I was lucky enough to get a placement at Walters Inc., which has proven to be the best thing that could have happened. I was able to combine technical knowledge and my love for business and knew it was the right path.”
As Marc finished his program, he balanced his placement at Walters with his studies. He worked part-time through his final semesters and then got hired on full-time after graduation. The plethora of experiences that Marc gained from this are invaluable.
“I liked the variety of work day-to-day during my co-op,” he says. “Walter’s projects are the coolest jobs. I got to work on towers in New York City, Ottawa and Toronto, for example.”
Today, Marc works as a project manager at Walters Group. His extensive experience and knowledge have more than prepared him for this role.
“My father-in-law, also an engineer, told me to concern myself with experience,” he says. “If you want experience for the industry you want to work in, Walters will give you that.”
As one of Mohawk’s Future Ready Premium Employers, Walters Group is deeply engaged in the Hamilton community. It is a family-owned business that supports co-op placements and apprenticeships, as well as industry projects like CityLab and student awards.
When asked what he enjoyed most about his job, Marc couldn’t just choose one thing.
Marc says, “I enjoy many aspects of my job. I like working collaboratively with a team and seeing progress from engineering drawings to a full-scale structure. My first project as a Project Manager was a New York City tower. It was a full-circle moment, as I supported one of the project managers on the ‘Sister Building’ during my co-op. It’s cool to be a part of it all.”
Marc’s journey has been coloured with change, but it has all worked to his benefit in the end. For those following the trades pathway, he has some sound advice.
“Get out there, try things,” he says. “Take it from me, my path changed direction three times during my studies at Mohawk, just from putting myself out there. I ran into the HR manager at Walters when I volunteered for a Meet the Grad night at Mohawk. You never know what can happen.”