Interview with Laura Porras – Engineer


  1. What made you decide to become an Engineer?

Since I was a kid I have always been interested in math and technology. My father is an architect and he has always been involved in construction. I guess that his example was a big fact in my decision.

I also decided to be a civil engineer with an emphasis in underground construction because while taking my undergraduate classes I developed a special interest in classes related to soils and tunnels. I had a very good professor that guided me and supported me all the way through my college career.

2 .Where are you from?

I am from Bogota, Colombia.

3. What college did you attend?

I did my undergraduate degree in Idaho State University and my master’s degree in Colorado School of Mines

4. How many degrees do you have?

I have two, undergraduate (Bachelor’s)  and master’s.

5. Are there many women in your profession in Colombia?

Not really, engineering is a male dominated field in Colombia. I would say that 20% of the engineering work force is women and 80% are men.

  6. What was your first job? Were you an Intern?

Yes, I was an intern. My first job was at Idaho Transportation Department, I was part of a one year rotation program

7. What’s the hardest part of your job?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I would say that the field environment, when I go out to the field I am the only woman for the most part and it could be hard at the beginning. Also sometimes the work hours are long, during winter or summer, and getting use to new schedules, the cold and the heat can be a challenge.


  1. Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?

I like the management side of the engineering business. I could see myself being a project manager five years from now.


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