The award recognizes private and public development programs and projects that exemplify the principles of development excellence in North Texas.
Awesome Associates – Kassie Kolander, Senior Graduate Engineer (Houston, TX)
Tell us a little bit about where you’re from and where you went to school:
I grew up in a small town outside Beaumont, TX called China where most of my family lives. It’s a very welcoming town with about 1,100 people. I received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering at Lamar University which is also in Beaumont.
What drew you to this profession?
Growing up, my dad worked on the county’s road & bridge team and I loved joining him on site visits during summers when I was out of school. Early on, I was drawn to the field by my own curiosity about how to improve infrastructure.
What types of projects have you worked on?
Fortunately, I’ve had the opportunity to work on various projects within different facets of civil engineering, but my focus and passion is in Land Development. I love working on residential projects because I find there’s more freedom to integrate my own creativity in engineering design.
What’s your get-pumped song?
“Shoop” by Salt-N-Pepa.
What do you like to do in your free time?
I love watering my plants, walking my dog Sadie, and cooking & cleaning while listening to audiobooks.
Have you read any good books lately?
My favorite book this year is titled “The Mastery of Love” by Don Miguel Ruiz. This book along with Don Miguel Ruiz’s “Four Agreements” is a game-changer and is worth reading several times!
What does your ideal vacation look like?
Vising the Familia De Segrada Church in Barcelona has been on my bucket list for a while. I love the architecture in Spain.
What was your first job?
I was an ice cream scooper at MaggieMoo’s. My favorite ice cream to make was the Udderly Butter Bebopper.
When I’m creatively stuck, I…
Go outside and take a walk. Mindful walking really helps me.
What would be impossible for you to give up?
Pickles. I love pickles! And really, anything that’s pickled: pickled okra, pickled peppers, pickled quail eggs, etc.
Any interesting facts about yourself that you’d like to share?
I have over 80 thriving plants in my apartment — but don’t ask how many I’ve killed!
Who or what inspires you?
My Family. We’re all so very close, and we support each other no matter what.
Everyone at WGI has a story about why they joined the team. What’s yours?
I wanted to join a company whose culture aligned with my personality and values. I love working with everyone in our office. We all have our funny quirks, and everyone plays an essential role in making things productive and fun!
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