Welcome to Indigenous Futures in Engineering, Queen's University

Vaughn Maracle

Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte
B. Sc
Job title: 
Project Manager

Type(s) of Engineering:

Favourite thing: 

“I am constantly challenged with new problems, new methods, new contractors and it’s all about figuring it out,”

As project manager for a large construction company in upper New York State, Vaughn Maracle appreciates the path that got him there, including watching his father work hard as a general contractor. His respect for a university education in Civil Engineering, which has opened up vast opportunities for him, is matched by his respect and gratitude for his upbringing.

As a child growing up in Watertown, NY, Vaughn always wondered how things work and spending time with his dad on construction sites fuelled his interest.

“It’s natural for engineers to have that curiosity, to figure out how things are built and to determine what has to come next to make it work,” he says

Vaughn began his university career studying history at the University of Western Ontario, but his passion for engineering clearly outweighed his interest in history. He made a dramatic turn towards studying civil engineering, opting to go to the University of Buffalo, after which he went on to complete a Master’s in Business Administration at Canisius College in Buffalo.

Not surprisingly, a switch from a humanities discipline to science-filled courses in engineering was a challenging transition.

“I was not prepared for the problem set coursework in my engineering courses. I had been used to doing lots of reading and writing papers. I had to force myself to practice problem set after problem set to finally get my grades on track,” Vaughn explains.

Since graduating, Vaughn has spent the past seven years working in the construction industry. Currently he is project manager for Campus Construction Management in Grand Island, NY, where he’s in charge of renovating and adding additions onto five buildings in the school district, and building a new bus garage. His responsibilities include managing the overall budget, scheduling, and overseeing quality of work.

It’s a role that presents new and exciting challenges every day, an aspect of his job Vaughn seems to thrive on. “I am constantly challenged with new problems, new methods, new contractors and it’s all about figuring it out,” he says.

To aspiring engineers, Vaughn’s message is clear: “Think outside the box and go for it! It’s an extremely rewarding career choice.”

Now that his career has taken off, he sees the value in developing personal skills, which he believes are “every bit as important as technical skills when it comes to career advancement.”

On his time off, Vaughn enjoys keeping active with friends and family. As nod to his early days on construction sites, he also works in property management, where he applies the knowledge gained from university and on the job, with the practical and life skills he learned from his father.

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Kingston, Ontario, K7L 3N6, Canada

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