Having graduated with a degree in civil engineering from GW, Khala Antoine ‘20 has recently begun working as a field engineer and engineering assistant at Turner Construction in the Washington, DC, area. “I wanted to study engineering, because it was a way to be hands-on and incorporate creativity, innovation and science,” she explains. “I specifically chose the civil-structural concentration because it was very closely related to construction. My main interest was the process of the structures being put together rather than the math behind the design.”
Antoine came to GW from New York City, where she grew up. “What I loved most about the program is the mentorship,” she says of her time at SEAS. “Engineering is near impossible to get through on your own. Everyone needs some level of guidance.”
At GW, Antoine held leadership positions within two student organizations and was also a member of SEAS Together, a group dedicated to examining diversity and inclusion within the school. Within the GW chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers, Antoine first served as membership chair, then later became the group’s vice president and eventually its co-president. She was also a member of the Queer and Trans People of Color Association (QTPOCA), working on public relations efforts and then serving as VP. “What these two organizations have in common is they are the stepping stone for people’s comfort and confidence in a certain aspect of their life, whether it is in the engineering field or about their identity,” Antoine says. “These spaces were created for comfort and growth in these areas.”
Antoine says that her GW coursework adequately prepared her for her current role at Turner. “Certain classes at GW, such as my senior design course and construction project controls course, helped with management which is a major part of construction,” she says.