Being a Yooper, where railroads are scarce, I had no knowledge of the rail industry at all when I graduated from Michigan Tech in 2007 (BS in Construction Management, AAS in Civil Engineering Technology). I began working for CSX Transportation in July of 2007 in the Design and Construction department as a Management Trainee. During the Management Trainee program, I spent time at CSX’s training facility in Atlanta, GA. I learned to drive a spike, stringline a curve, change a knuckle, throw a switch, and, most importantly, how to live the safety culture that surrounds CSX and the railroad industry. In between sessions at the REDI center, I traveled around the 23 states that CSX operates in learning as much railroading as I could with experienced managers in different departments. (My travel record was visiting 10 states in 9 days!) I was also able to manage some smaller construction projects, learning about my future role in Design and Construction. From 2008 to 2012, I lived in Richmond, VA working as a Construction Engineer for CSX. In 2012, I took on my current role as Project Manager of Public Projects. My territory covers 5 states, including the best state in the country, Michigan! I work with the state DOTs and other local agencies to develop plans and construction agreements for various public agency projects that impact CSX, and I get to work with a wide variety of different people with a many types of projects every day. I encourage anyone looking for “something different” to look into a railroad career. It is a thriving industry, and many opportunities exist in all different career paths all around the country.
Project Manager - Public Projects, CSX Transportation