Olivia Dunleavy

Olivia Dunleavy

Staff Engineer
South Jersey Gas
NJ, United States
Olivia Dunleavy
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My name is Olivia Dunleavy! In June 2009 I embarked on my journey as a Civil Engineer in the exciting Natural Gas Industry. I attended Stevens Institute in the lovely Hoboken, New Jersey; I graduated May of 2009. In elementary school I can remember racing the boys in class on who could finish the hardest long division problems first, I almost always won! Between my elementary school days and late high school I lost track of what it meant to love Math and Science (although always exceled in those classes). My Junior year in high school is when a career in engineering nestled its way into my mind. The last question I asked my Grandfather (who was also a civil engineer) before he passed was: "how are tunnels constructed?" Little did I know that in college I would get to tour tunnel constructions under NYC and learn the answer to that question. I began touring engineering colleges in the NorthEast, and found my home at Stevens. I loved my time their and was fortunate with opportunities presented to me. I believe women engineers are a force to be reckoned with and the men better watch out!

  • I am willing to be interviewed by interested students via email.
Answers by Olivia Dunleavy

Hi Michelle!! I'm happy to hear you are interested in Civil Engineering and thank you for reaching out to me. You're not alone when saying you do not enjoy breaking your head for the physics and calculus tests.  I was in your boat my freshmen year of college. I was so worried about the major before I started the journey: worried I would not be at par with other students, worried I would not grasp the information quick enough, unsure if I would be able to handle the work load, unsure if I would be able to handle the stress and the never ending homework problems. I was decent at the subjects in high school (not an AP student, just honors), I did okay on the tests and always went to my teachers for extra help.  Getting to college I realized I was not alone with needing help understanding a new concept or getting through a problem. I learned other students are willing to help and work through problems together (even when it is scary to ask the professors for help). Engineering programs in general I feel is not an "I" program but a "WE."  Everyone is on board to help and spend time together getting the never ending problems done.  I am not going to lie the Physics and Calculus are difficult but when you break them up little by little they are not to excruciating (especially when 100 other students are in the same predicament).  Also, I found throughout my college adventure there is no other career path I would rather pursue. I got through the hard courses because I knew what I wanted at the end of 4 years.  I am far from the best at physics and calculus but I made it through with help from my peers and determination (and realization I may not always get A's and B's I was used to in High school).  I believe some career paths use key features and more calculus then others but so far I've used very little of the complex subjects in my field. If I need to relearn something I look it up on the internet (i find step by step YouTube videos).  I would go for it if I were you. You don't always have to be a 4.0 student you just have to want it bad enough. Good Luck!! Engineering is a great and a wonderful career choice, even if the path to get their is arduous.