Article March 7, 2023
2023 Women in Construction Week | Ali Kirschman
In celebration of Women in Construction Week, we’re highlighting some of our powerful Preston women to gain some insight into how they began their careers in the construction industry and what they’ve learned along the way.
Let us introduce you to Estimator Ali Kirschman. Ali graduated from California Polytechnic University San Luis Obispo in 2019 and joined Preston as a Project Engineer in 2019 before being promoted to an Estimator in 2022.
What inspired you to pursue a career in construction?
I discovered Preston Pipelines at a career fair at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. I wasn’t familiar with construction or Preston, but many of my classmates either worked here or knew someone who did, and they all had something positive to say! I was also interested in the mix of office and field settings, which not only gets me out of the office but is also a great way to learn about construction.
What makes you continue to work in the industry?
The people! I have built great relationships throughout my four years at Preston Pipelines. I was lucky to have some great mentors at our Santa Clara office. With their help, I learned a lot about the industry and my role as a Project Engineer. After moving to Sacramento and transitioning into an Estimator position, I’ve found that my time as a Project Engineer gives me a broader perspective and allows me to be more effective in my current role. Lastly, I’ve enjoyed making connections with our clients and competitors!
What is your favorite part about your job?
Every day is unique. As an estimator, I bid on a variety of projects from different sectors, such as residential, schools, and commercial. Each one of these projects comes with its own specific obstacles, which makes every bid challenging and fun.
What advice would you give to a woman who is considering a career in the construction industry?
Go for it! The construction industry is hiring more women each year, and there are a lot of great opportunities here at Preston and elsewhere. I find this industry very welcoming and rewarding, and people are always willing to lend a hand.
What does the 2023 International Women’s Day campaign theme #EmbraceEquity mean to you?
Embracing equity to me means that we should try to increase representation of historically underrepresented groups in construction and other fields. Increased diversity in background and opinion keeps our company and society moving forward and ensures the best ideas will rise to the top.
Whether you have an inquiry about our services, pricing, needing engineering expertise, or anything else, our team is ready to answer all of your questions.