Jose Benitez, a Dordt student from Paraguay, was recently named by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) as one of the ten 2019 New Faces of Civil Engineering in the college category.
The American Society of Civil Engineers was founded in 1852 and represents more than 150,000 civil engineers throughout the world. Their vision is to be global leaders, “building a better quality of life,” and their focus is to empower civil engineers to make a difference. More information about ASCE can be found at asce.org.
Benitez decided to pursue a career in civil engineering because he was inspired by his family and by the infrastructural problems in his hometown, Ciudad del Este, Paraguay.
“Considering the years I spent learning English, learning how the college system in the United States worked, and having to choose a university here,” he told Christian Courier, “I feel like this award shows that the quality of my formation is among the top in the nation and all those years of work were worth it.” Benitez continues, “It is a tremendous effort for international students to come over. It’s a path packed with uncertainties, and seeing how things come together like this is extremely rewarding.”
After graduation Benitez is excited to work in Denver, Colorado for a transportation engineering and planning firm and working towards licensure.
A GREATER PURPOSE
Being named as one of the 10 on this list is not only an accomplishment for Benitez but an accomplishment for Dordt College as well. “For the engineering department, it means that Dordt engineering students are ready to participate in the engineering environment at a national level and bring the invaluable Christian perspective of engineering to the table.”
Studying at a faith-based school has been an encouragement for Benitez. “At Dordt we are constantly reminded in classes that our work as future engineers is not for the paycheck, but for the benefit we bring to creation – we are working for God. Knowing this makes me go through every day, every project, every assignment, knowing that my performance in every one of those activities, regardless how mundane they seem, are for a greater purpose that we can think of in our lives.”
Benitez also had a message to other students, saying, “I would like to encourage students, not just engineers, to explore different environments in their professional careers. It might feel that we are often meant to stay within the Christian community, which is fine but there is a lot that we can do as Christians in the professional world.”
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