Surveying is at the core of the services that we provide at Manhard Consulting. During National Surveyors Week 2021, we are proud to highlight one of our talented surveyors. Marcus, a staff surveyor in our Lombard office, shared some thoughts on his introduction to surveying, experiences in the field and passing on his knowledge to the next generation during a Q & A:
What was your first experience with surveying?
After graduating high school I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, so I enrolled in a civil and construction engineering technology program. My first experience surveying was taking an “Intro to Surveying” class. The program introduced me to many different areas within the construction industry ranging from materials testing and structural engineering to surveying and civil engineering. It allowed me to pinpoint aspects of the construction industry that I liked, and I found that surveying interested me the most.
What is the strangest situation you have encountered while in the field?
When you’re working outside you experience a lot of strange things, the world is a weird place. Once while I was working on a topographic survey, I heard some arguing across the street. I looked over and saw someone kick out a window of another person’s car. Thankfully, the police showed up within a few minutes to calm the situation. It was more entertaining than scary!
What does a “normal” day look like for you?
A normal day consists of checking the field crews notes, processing raw data in CAD, and creating a final plat or exhibit for the client. I also research new projects by pulling records from the county (ie. deeds and subdivision plats) while creating work orders for the field crews.
Do you have a favorite project, or type of project?
Any projects that we fly a drone on or perform laser scanning are my favorites. I always enjoy utilizing new technology especially since drones and scanners add a 3-dimensional perspective to 2-dimensional tasks.
If there is one thing you wished people could understand about your job, what would it be?
Surveying is more than just a person on the side of the road looking through a tripod “Total Station”. An important aspect of surveying is gathering evidence to place property lines, proposed buildings, roads, bridges, and other objects with a high degree of accuracy.
How are you passing on your experience in surveying to the next generation?
I’m starting the Illinois Young Surveyor’s group. The goal of the group is to recruit, connect, develop and retain young surveyors by providing a community and creating professional development opportunities. Ideally, this group will inform high school students that surveying is a great option as well as engineering or construction related careers.
Is there anything else about your surveying career that you would like to share?
I started out pounding hubs with a sledgehammer. With time and a great mentor, I can now complete surveys from start to finish. I am very fortunate to have great mentors that challenge me and help me grow professionally.