SCJ Intern Wins Women’s Transportation Scholarship, Heads for National Competition

SCJ Alliance
Maddie Knecht, intern at SCJ Alliance. Photo courtesy: SCJ Alliance

Submitted by SCJ Alliance

Maddie Knecht is no stranger to competition. A hitter for the volleyball team at Saint Martin’s University and a former Junior Olympian, the civil engineering student knows what it takes to win. Last month, she took that victorious spirit and turned it not into gold, but into cash. 

The Puget Sound chapter of WTS, or Women’s Transportation Seminar, awarded Maddie $5,000 for its Sharon D. Banks Memorial Undergraduate Scholarship and forwarded her application to the national competition.

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Maddie and her teammates won 2nd place in the national 2016 PCI Big Beam Contest. Photo courtesy: SCJ Alliance

According to their website, WTS Foundation scholarships are “competitive and based on the applicant’s specific transportation goals, academic record and transportation-related activities or job skills.”

Maddie is in her senior year at SMU and has been an intern for SCJ since May 2016. Josh Brannin, a project engineer in the transportation design group at SCJ, encouraged her to apply for the competitive scholarship. 

“Maddie is resourceful, a hard worker and a great team player,” said Josh. “She jumps in and offers help or stay late and is always eager to learn more. She has provided a lot of value to our efforts, and we are happy to have her on the team.”

In her application essay for the scholarship, Maddie wrote about her experience as a female engineer and her role as a leader in disciplines throughout the university.

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Maddie, middle, on the court with her teammates on the SMU volleyball team. Photo courtesy: SCJ Alliance.

“Over the three years that I have been at Saint Martin’s, participation in the women’s volleyball team, the Benedictine Scholars Program, the PCI Big Beam Competition, and Society of Women Engineers have shaped my work ethic, time management, and leadership skills,” she said. “I think it is important for women to earn leadership positions in engineering to diversify the work environment and encourage different strengths and perspectives.” 

Maddie, we couldn’t agree more!

SCJ is a multidisciplinary consulting firm specializing in civil engineering, transportation planning and design, environmental and urban planning, landscape architecture and design, and public outreach. The dynamic company has locations in Lacey, Centralia, Vancouver, Seattle, and Wenatchee, Washington.

The privately-held, majority women-owned firm is nationally – recognized and the recipient of two top places to work awards in the last 12 months.  

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