Today, our Employee Spotlight series showcases Karina Cisneros, EI, one of Ciorba Group’s talented engineers in our structural group!

Karina Cisneros, EI - Structures Engineer

Karina in the Spotlight

Karina was born and raised in Chicago. Early in life, she noticed that solving mathematical problems was something that she enjoyed, so much so, that her high school counselor suggested she explore a career in Engineering. Even though she wasn’t set on a specific field, for Karina, structural was the most exciting, “I enjoyed all my steel and connection classes… but it was during my masters’ internship at the Chicago Transit Authority where I felt the joy of being a Structural Engineer,” Karina said.

Karina’s hard work and dedication goes beyond her daily activities at Ciorba, she also volunteers for Habitat Chicago’s Women Build in her spare time. For the second year in a row Karina helped Build Homes for low-income women-led families. Karina remarked “It gives me great satisfaction knowing that even if I can’t financially contribute; I can give my time, knowledge and help in other ways; and here at Ciorba Group my coworkers show me their support and encourage me to keep working even more with Habitat for Humanity”.

Karina’s favorite part about being an Engineer is shifting roles, from drafting and designing in the office to going out in the field and learning how her designs fit in the project. One of the most exciting projects she has worked  on is the Montrose Avenue Bridge over FAI 90/94 and the CTA Blue Line. “We worked on the (final plan preparation for the superstructure) replacement of the Montrose Avenue bridge, keeping the substructure and making use of what was existing because we tried to make the project as sustainable and efficient for both the client and the community… It’s nice to see how the projects I worked on come to completion”, Karina explained. You can read more about the Montrose Avenue Bridge here.

When asked about one piece of advice she would give to young engineers, Karina said that it is important to never give up, no matter how difficult it can get, it will get better.She also recommended finding an advocate either at work or school. Karina pointed out “In every step of my career, I’ve found that one person that believed in me, and that’s why I feel pride of being part of Ciorba, here they believe in my abilities, and encourage my career development through symposiums and classes… Ciorba Group’s mission and values are so different from any other place I have been…I feel like here I have my second family”.

For our final question, we asked Karina what she would title her autography. She responded, “Leading the Path. I was the first one from my family going to graduate from college and I feel that I’m leading the path for my young brothers, my family, and my friends. I want to be the best role model they can get.” We hope you enjoyed reading about Karina, until the next edition of Ciorba Spotlight.

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