Sharon Kenny

Current Position: Environmental Engineer at US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
February 9, 2012Her job: Environmental Engineer, US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Describe what you do in your current work situation? I protect human health and the environment.
Why did you choose engineering? I chose to study engineering because it enables me not only to understand the science behind a problem, but also to develop and build solutions to these problems.
Where did you go to school and what degree(s) do you have? I have two master's degree: one in Civil Engineering (2003) from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and a second one in Geochemistry (2001) from the University of Florida. GO GATORS!
What kinds of activities have typically been part of your work? I am a Project Manager for the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Corrective Action program, which addresses investigation and cleanup of past and present contamination at operating industrial facilities. I also assist in the advancement of new regulation for toxic substances, and in the development of strategic planning and programmatic goals for the Sustainable Materials Management program.
What do you like best about being an engineer? Working with math
Which of your career accomplishments are you proudest of? Becoming ordained as a minister of The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
What challenges have you met and conquered in your pursuit of an engineering career? Attending college full time while raising a child.
Please tell us a little about your family. I have three amazing kids (two teenagers and a toddler), and a wonderful husband. We love to go camping, play tennis, and discuss topics we discover in Reddit.
What are your short-term (1-2 years) and long-term (10+ years) goals? My short term goal is to purchase a sailboat and travel around the world while finishing my PhD studies in Engineering Economics.  Once we return from our circumnavigation of the globe, I would like to continue my career at the World Bank or the United Nations Environment Programme.  During my free time, I would love to teach math, science and engineering.
What (or who) had/has the greatest influence on your life choices? Carl Sagan; Stephen Hawking; Tim Minchin; and the 14th Dali Lama, Tenzin Gyatso
What advice would you give to a young woman considering a career in engineering? "Do one thing every day that scares you." Eleanor Roosevelt US diplomat & reformer (1884 - 1962)
Describe something about your life outside of work: your hobbies, or perhaps a favorite book. I love to read!  My favorite books are: The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz;  How The Rich Are Destroying the Earth by Hervé Kempf;  Skinny Bitches by Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin; and  Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein