Early this month Sundt poured 320 cubic yards of concrete for a pad 142 feet by 92 feet to expand training for students in the Construction and Concrete Technology programs at Central Arizona College (CAC). Sundt donated the cost of the pad’s pour. Students in the heavy equipment operator program leveled and graded the area and construction technology students built the concrete forms. Sundt and CAC formed a workforce development partnership last year. Sundt staff donate their time as adjunct instructors and funds were donated for the purchase of GPS equipment, tools and supplies for the construction technology program.
New Sundt employee-owner Meagan Garcia started full-time with last month after spending a year as an intern. Growing up as an Army brat, she lived all over the world, including going to high school in Italy. She’s now settled in San Antonio, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Construction Science and Management from the University of Texas at San Antonio and is working on our CPS Energy Headquarters project.
What interested you about construction?
I was going to architecture school for a while and I think when everyone gets to a certain point in that curriculum you either want to be more a part of the design process or the building process. Although both are equally important, I was more interested in “how” things were put together versus “why.”
How did you get your internship with Sundt?
I got an internship position by being invited to a National Association of Women in Construction event, where I met one of Sundt’s talent acquisition employees and mentioned I was interested in an internship. The rest is history!
When did you know you wanted to work here?
I knew I wanted to work here when I was graciously welcomed to the company and constantly involved and motivated. You need to feel comfortable in your surroundings to learn, and if your job can teach you, motivate you and inspire you, then that is a good place to be! I also knew I wanted to work here once I found out how open the company was to providing continuous training opportunities. Not many can say they have experienced that, especially as an intern. I am a true nerd – I value education and love to learn and I think this is one of the many things that makes Sundt a great place to work.
Where did you get the idea to go up on the crane at the CPS Energy project to have your photo taken?
As we were erecting our tower crane, the “I climbed a tower crane once” stories came about and I wanted to give it a try. If you get to do something as fun as climbing a tower crane, you need a photo and a sign. The sign honestly wrote itself—feeling “on top of the world” because I was 300 feet up and because I am just loving it here at my first project!
What was that experience like?
I loved climbing up and hated climbing down—probably because the excitement was gone after I got to the top. The view and the experience was like no other. I am so glad I had the opportunity to do it! And if anyone is wondering, yes, you can feel it move back and forth once you get about 200 feet up. Good thing I am not afraid of heights—or a challenge! Ha!
After something that nerve-racking, what’s next on your bucket list?
To be honest, I have not given that much thought. I am just happy to be a new graduate and can’t wait to see what is next.
The University of North Texas (UNT) needs a larger facility to expand its Biomedical Engineering program. We have a strong resume working with colleges and universities on similar projects. It’s a pairing with purpose.
We are just getting under way, with a 12-month construction timeline. The project will add 26,000 gross square feet to the existing building at the UNT Discovery Park campus.
“Sundt’s resume in higher education, with emphasis on the health and sciences projects, made this connection perfect,” Project Manager Holly Horsak said.
One of the nation’s largest public research universities, UNT has an enrollment of more than 38,000. The university grew from a private college to a large public research university. It’s the fourth-largest university in North Texas and the biggest in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
“UNT is 128 years old with 10 colleges and two schools and are experiencing record-breaking enrollment growth,” Holly said. “We want to grow with them.”
Coincidentally, our company was also founded in 1890. This project, which expands our university work in Texas, could create a match both sides find beneficial for many years.
“We are really excited to have been chosen for this project and are looking forward to building a long-lasting relationship with UNT,” Holly said.
Project Manager David Musch recently earned a Top Young Professional award from Engineering News-Record Texas & Louisiana for his dedication to improving construction processes and outcomes. David is the Continuous Improvement Leader for Sundt’s Building Group – Texas District and was part of the first class in the country to complete the Associated General Contractors Lean Certification program.
David grew up in the Dallas suburb of Carrollton, and attended Loyola University in New Orleans on a baseball scholarship. He has been with Sundt since 2014. In his spare time, he enjoys playing golf and fishing. He and Lindsey, his wife of 10 years, have two daughters, Lily (8) and Ivy (5).
What was your first thought when you learned you won the award?
It caught me off guard. I didn’t have any expectations to win. I am very honored to have been chosen. I work hard and am passionate about my career, so it feels good to be recognized.
What has been your biggest accomplishment since joining Sundt?
Sundt has given me great opportunities to learn and develop my career. I have been a Continuous Improvement Leader since 2015 representing the Texas Building District. I received my CM-Lean certificate and was recently asked to be a member of the group that promotes education and training for Lean. I was the Project Manager from pre-construction through operations on the Wichita Falls Independent School District Career and Technology Center. We worked very hard over the course of two years to deliver the project on time and under budget.
Which project are you working on now?
CPS Energy Headquarters in downtown San Antonio. It is a difficult and complex project with a high profile client and exposure in the city. We have a great team and the client has been very receptive to our performance. We are still in the early stages of the project, with about two months remaining on the demo schedule. We also have a large self-perform concrete element, so this will be a great project for our local resume.
How open has the company been to allowing young professionals to bring their ideas to the table?
There has been a lot of change during my time with Sundt. As a company, we are always looking for ways to improve our performance. This type of environment is great for young professionals to expand their careers and push the envelope with technology and process improvement.
What do you see in your future as a Sundt employee-owner?
I look forward to the challenge of expanding my leadership and role in operations.
As Phoenix’s summer temperatures hit triple digits, many homeless and disadvantaged people suffer from thirst and heat-related illness. Today, Sundt employee-owners and industry partners donated 296,252 bottles of water to assist the Phoenix-area’s homeless during our annual Thirst-Aid drive.
The water was loaded onto a semi-truck and delivered to St. Joseph the Worker, a nonprofit that has aided the homeless and underserved population for almost 30 years in Greater Phoenix. St. Joseph partners with the Human Services Campus, a collaboration of 12 homeless service providers, to distribute the water.
If you would like to contribute, visit St. Joseph the Worker’s website to make a donation.