Earlier this year, PennTerra Engineering (PTE) welcomed Patti Higgins to the team as a Project Assistant.
“Patti’s experience has helped her hit the ground running,” said John Sepp, P.E., President of PTE. “We have a lot of projects in progress, so having Patti join the team has been incredibly helpful in making sure we are delivering the best customer service possible for our clients.”
A State High and South Hills – Accounting alumna, Higgins joined PTE after almost eight years with HRI, Inc. as a Senior Administrative Assistant in the equipment department. She has a long history of working in and near the construction industry.
“I feel like I’m kind of coming back full-circle to my first job, which was in drafting,” mused Higgins. “In high school and after graduation, I worked for a drafting company – taking their printed mylar plans and digitizing them in AutoCAD.”
With no shortage of land development plans and CAD engineers in the office, Higgins will feel right at home.
“My husband, Jeremiah, is an excavator, so there are always plans around,” noted Higgins.
Previously, Higgins helped manage her husband’s excavating business, which was part of the team that completed The Bellaire project.
Jeremiah had also explored the possibility of making his company, Higgins Excavating, an employee-owned company. So, Higgins was familiar with the ownership model when she was considering a position with PTE, an employee-owned company.
“I liked that it was employee-owned,” Higgins noted. “It’s really laid-back, yet everyone is busy. Teamwork is big part of it because the next person can’t start on a project until you’ve finished your part.”
As a Project Assistant in the Project Management Department, Higgins juggles many projects and deadlines.
“I probably have 25 projects on my whiteboard right now,” Higgins laughed. “So far, I’ve been working on PennDOT (Department of Transportation) permits, DEP (Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection) sewage modules, plan submission packages to municipalities, easement research, and ordinance research.”
With exposure to so many projects already, has Higgins found a favorite?
“I find all of them a little exciting because even though you do similar things for each, they all have their quirks. They’re not 100 percent like the last one you did,” Higgins explained. “I especially enjoyed a project we did in Westmoreland County because it was the first one that I got to handle from start to finish.”
After a few months on the job, how is Higgins settling into her new surroundings?
“Everyone’s really helpful, easy to get along with,” she stated. “The hours are somewhat flexible, which is nice. And it’s family-oriented.”
In fact, Higgin’s eldest daughters, Taryn and Laura, are playing on the softball team this year, the PennTerra Silt Sox.
At her Warriors Mark-area home, Higgins has two more daughters, Suzanne and Allyson, as well as many pets.
“We have three goats that are holding the grass down, a black Labrador, an English Mastiff, and a Heinz 57 dog that we got from (Centre County) PAWS,” she listed. “And, we have chickens, ducks, cats, rabbits, and a bee hive.”
This weekend, Higgins could be found gardening, tending her bees, enjoying a delicious dinner out, or building a bonfire with her family.
From your new PennTerra family, welcome aboard, Patti!