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April 15, 2021

Student view: Following in my family’s footsteps

Sabrina Maniaci is a senior majoring in construction management in the School of Planning, Design and Construction. The following student view is repurposed content from the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

As an Italian immigrant with no money or education, my grandfather started a construction company. His hard work, commitment to quality and a dream for a better life for his family inspires me, and it is because of him and my father that I chose to pursue a career in construction management.

Construction is a bit of a family affair. My father, who took on his own residential company using what he learned from his father, is a source of support and mentorship. As are my uncle, who is also a residential builder, and my brother-in-law, a Spartan construction management alumnus.

Construction management can lead to so many different career opportunities, whether it is building residential homes, manufacturing factories, corporate offices, schools, retail stores, restaurants or roads.

Every project involves different types of materials and methods used, such as pouring concrete foundations for a new build or removing environmental hazards for a renovation.

It’s a job needed everywhere, and it can take you all over the country or even beyond the U.S., but the same task is done a different way in different regions. As opposed to a boring daily task routine, every day in construction is filled with exciting new challenges to tackle.

I chose construction management because it is an amazingly complex mixture of art and science that is vital to civilization. I want to be a part of an industry that literally builds communities.

My best experiences within my major were the MSU Residential Competition Team, Student Builders and Contractors Association, and my internship.

Being on MSU’s Residential Competition Team, which won first place the past two years at the National Home Builders Show, was also a great learning experience because students designed a real subdivision that will be developed by a contractor.

The Student Builders and Contractors Association is a great MSU club where students can connect with each other, hear from professionals and tour awesome construction sites.

After graduation, I will be joining construction company Whiting-Turner as a project engineer. I am very excited to begin my career and take on the many projects ahead.

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