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Meet Darcel Collins, A Transportation Specialist at Federal Highway Administration Office of Tribal Transportation - Washington, DC.

What are your typical responsibilities? 

Provide technical assistance, stewardship, and oversight for transportation funds and projects for tribal nations. This assistance includes working with the tribes on planning, design, and constructing road and bridge projects.

How did you become interested in a STEM profession? 

As a child, I was always fascinated with unique architecture structures and loved math.

What or whom were you early influences?

My middle and high school math teachers.

What advice would you offer for students to cultivate an interest in STEM and prepare themselves for a potential future career in a STEM field?

When considering a career, think about what will provide you with multitude opportunities to work where ever you want in the world, with stability, and an ability to advance and to provide financial security. A STEM career is a great way to go. Take your math and science classes seriously, think of the real-life applications, and learn how you can make an impact on the world by choosing STEM.

How can a profession in a STEM field empower young women to make a difference in the world?

Working in civil engineering or any STEM profession, a career that not many women choose, in and of itself is empowering. STEM careers spur innovation, leadership, and daily change with what we do and how we do it. This impacts the world!

Is there anything else you would like to share?

This career has afforded me the opportunity to visit almost every state in the United States and to see places a little girl from the small town of Burlington, New Jersey could not even begin to image. If I can do it, I know you can too.