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CityScapes - Empowering Women in the Industry Series

CityScapes - Empowering Women in the Industry Series

Women in Engineering: Nathaly Ciprian

Civil Structural Engineer, Project Engineer, Carpenter&Cross Structural Engineers


CityScapes is taking the opportunity to celebrate and embrace women in our industry. Today, we want to highlight one of our associates, Nathaly Ciprian, a Civil Structural Engineer. She has been recognized by her peers for her dedication, innovation, and passion to elevate engineering in all aspects. Nathaly’s aspiration is to continuously develop projects that align with her ideals of building sustainable and livable spaces for her community.


What attracted you to pursue a career in engineering? 

My first introduction to engineering was the summer after fourth grade. I was invited to participate in a summer pre-college program at The New Jersey Institute of Technology. This program is designed to encourage girls to seek out careers in engineering, and that summer specifically, the topic was environmental engineering. For a month, I had the opportunity to explore the topic of environmental engineering. This program gave me the opportunity to travel, participate in classwork and laboratory work, and learn about recycling. I had such a wonderful time that whenever I had the chance to participate in summer programs, I always pursued engineering. 


Where do you feel that you are in your career?

I recently had a small career change from facilities engineer to structural design engineer role. Right now, I am learning and preparing for my professional engineering license exam. I hope to accomplish it by the end of this year.


What excites you the most about your job and career path?

For me, it is helping people. Whether it is designing homes for people to live in, schools, hospitals, or places for people to enjoy and relax.

Long term, as I become a subject matter expert, I would like to participate and contribute to technical advisory committees for organizations such as Engineering Without Borders. Helping and evaluating the structure and buildings after a natural disaster. Such as the earthquake in Turkey and Syria or mentoring young people who want to learn and pursue a career in engineering.


What is your favorite aspect or area of engineering?

The final product. The culmination of the architect's vision combined with the engineering design and the contractor's skills. Simply seeing the place come to life and people enjoying it.


What do you wish you would have known starting in the field?

I wish I was more aware of the benefits of participating in professional organizations such as the Structural Engineers Association of Ohio (SEAOO). Because when I graduated, I was more focused on becoming an expert in my role, which prevented me from noticing the benefits of being part of organizations like SEAOO. So, I feel that I really narrowed my point of view of the world and its resources. Since I started participating in and attending SEAOO meetings, I have gained a lot of motivation from learning as well as connecting with other professionals in my field.


What female do you consider a pioneer in engineering? Why?

I would like to highlight Aida Espinola (1920 – 2015), a Brazilian Chemical Engineer. She had a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree, a doctorate degree, and four post-doctorate achievements, which I think is amazing. When she started her career, she focused on the oil discovery in Brazil. She analyzed mineral rocks in her laboratories that NASA later used to analyze the rocks on the moon. Further down the line in her career, she was known as a pioneer for hydrogen fuel cells. I admire Aida’s dedication to learning, growing, and being able to adapt to the industry that, for her time, was dominated by men.


What projects are you the proudest to be part of?

When I started at Carpenter&Cross Structural Engineers, my very first project was a residence that is currently being renovated to become a wedding venue called the Ivory Mansion. One cool thing about that project is that I was able to dive right into multiple materials designs, concrete, masonry, steel, and wood. I completed code checks, detailed connections, and generated drawings. It required a wide range of skills in the structural design engineering field. It was kind of a full breath into the structural design engineering field. Another aspect I enjoyed about this project was the client relationship we built. This was the first project we had with Hamilton Buildings and Craftsman Services LLC., and since then we have collaborated on two additional projects. It’s nice being able to build that relationship and continue working together.

Ivory Mansion - Initial stage

Ivory Mansion - In process

I also had the opportunity to work on a few projects with CityScapes. Such as Covrit® dumpster enclosures, where CityScapes manages the process from start to finish. CityScapes builds customizable architectural solutions while maintaining our clients' ergonomic and sophisticated designs. The way I see it, CityScapes® makes ugly things pretty.

covrit - 3


In your opinion, who is the female leaving a mark in your field? Why?

Emily Guglielmo. I recently had the opportunity to meet her at the annual conference of the Structural Engineering Association of Ohio. I attended a workshop that she presented on wind engineering. I was immediately captivated by her confidence when she spoke, her expertise in the subject, and the ease with which she explained a topic that is so complex, at least to me.

I had the fortune of speaking with her after her presentation, and she was very welcoming and open to sharing her thoughts and advice. Since then, I connected with her on LinkedIn, and I learned that she has already done a lot of great things for our industry. She has developed codes and standards for seismic and wind design. She founded the Communication Committee, which created a national voice for structural engineers, bringing public awareness of what we do. She also founded the Young Members Support Group Committee which generated resources to help young members succeed and obtain licensure. Emily is often seen educating and mentoring other structural engineers. 


What are you looking to see in the engineering field, and how do you see the field of engineering evolving?

I am excited about the sustainability developments in the field. Recently, there has been a lot of development in green building practices as far as jarring the operation of the building where you can ensure it’s efficient.

Currently, the industry is switching to the front end of construction by using sustainable materials, such as cement that takes in carbon dioxide, which strengthens the concrete while using less cement and lowering carbon emissions. As well as using additive manufacturing materials, which reduces construction time and equipment required on-site. So, I am really looking forward to seeing further research on how using sustainable materials in construction sites continues to improve construction and where we go from here.


What advice would you give young women considering a career path in engineering?

Because engineering is such a broad field, when you are in school or in your career, seek to learn, take the time to ask questions, and learn as much as possible. Don't be discouraged if there is a topic you don’t fully understand or is difficult to grasp. It doesn’t mean that you are not cut out for engineering or that you are not meant to be an engineer. It could just mean it is not your niche, which is okay. Remember, surround yourself with people who are passionate about engineering and willing to mentor you. You can do that through student organizations, internships, and summer programs.


When you’re not at work, what do you enjoy?

I enjoy spending time with my family, whether enjoying a meal, having a good conversation, or going out to explore the Columbus Metro Parks. This past weekend we when out to Quarry Trails. The park has beautiful bike trails, walking trails, and stunning scenery to enjoy. It is a beautiful place, and one of the things I found interesting about it is that it is a full circle of our industry. On that site, they used to excavate materials from the earth, and then they developed and renovated it as a space where people can live and play. If you haven’t been to Quarry Trails Metro Park, I recommend you check it out!


If you had to describe yourself in one word, what would that word be?

Nathaly Ciprian - Quote-1-1

Nathaly has and will continue to build an impressive career breaking stereotypes and paving the way for other women, proving that anything is possible when it comes to pursuing their passion and making a difference in the world. Nathaly graduated from The University of South Florida with a degree in Civil Engineering. She is currently living in Columbus, Ohio, with a loving husband, a brilliant one-year-old daughter, and a very energetic three-year-old puppy.

Nathaly Ciprian - Family What do you think? Have thoughts on this topic? We’re listening. Head over to our LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram, and use #EmpoweringWomen to join the conversation.



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