Setting tomorrow’s engineers up for success
For Joy (BEng’79) and Diego Romero (BEng’79), their shared lives in engineering have come full circle.
The two met and married as students at Nova Scotia Technical College (NSTC), now the Dalhousie Faculty of Engineering. Together, they went on to build successful careers while raising a family of three. And now with their gift to the IDEA Project Campaign, Joy and Diego are helping prepare the next generation of engineers for the work world.
“Our professors, our technicians, even the cleaning staff cared about us as students and as individuals,” recalls Joy, vice president, Technology & Innovation, Canada Natural Resources Limited in Calgary. “Each of them encouraged us to strive, work hard and do well. You learned to deliver, but also have fun in the process.”
“Their work ethic set us up to succeed.”
“Now it’s time for us to ensure that tradition lives on.”
Building with the students in mind
“Education is the foundation not only for a career, but also for life,” says Diego, a project director with Teck Resources Limited. “That’s why we wanted to give back by helping Dalhousie create a more effective learning environment for the students.”
From Joy and Diego’s perspective, the Emera ideaHUB’s student-centred design will do exactly that. So they’re directing their gift to one of the new student workshops, a multi-purpose space intended to encourage conversation and idea-sharing.
Engineering today is an increasingly collaborative profession. “By learning how to work and problem-solve together, Dal engineers will be better prepared for the realities of the work world,” explains Joy.
In the 38 years since Joy and Diego graduated, their lives and careers have taken them overseas and across Canada. Today, they call Calgary home, although Joy’s job takes her to Fort McMurray regularly, while Diego’s currently directing a major project in southeastern British Columbia. “We’re a typical Albertan family in that we travel a fair bit for work,” says Joy.
“Our engineering education provided well for us and our family over the years, and opened many doors throughout our career and life,” adds Diego. “If our gift can help tomorrow’s engineers succeed, then we’re happy.”