User Spotlight: Kathy Pendergast

"This project [Metro Light Rail] combined a bunch of drafters from several different offices, which gave us a chance to learn from others and expand our knowledge of all programs."

Name:                    Kathy Pendergast

Job Title:              Senior Engineering Tech

Organization:     Tucson Water

Education:           Associates Degree in Drafting & Design,
                                   Second Associates Degree in Computer
                                   Aided Drafting & Design

Hobbies:                Quilting, Swimming, Scouts

Using Bentley Software for:
25 years

Briefly describe your background. How did you get from there to here?
I started watching my brother plan to going into architecture. I liked to watch him draw. I decided to take a drafting class in 1983 when women were a minority in the field, and ended up graduating with Honors. I switched to CADD, started using both platforms in 1990, and have been in civil field since. I love seeing a completed project change the area for the better; it’s changing the face of the earth to make life more livable. For all of you young women out there, don’t let the fact that there are a lot of men in engineering intimidate you. Women add an interesting twist to the engineering side as well as a completely different mindset to it.

What project are you particularly proud of?
I spent 8 years working on all phases of the Metro Light Rail in Phoenix, AZ. We did the DEIS (Design Environmental Impact Study) and Preliminary Engineering using MicroStation J and InRoads. When we transitioned to Final Design, the City of Phoenix became the major controller and they used another format. This being a major change, we switched to MicroStation V8 and the DWG options. This project combined a bunch of drafters from several different offices, which gave us a chance to learn from others and expand our knowledge of all programs. It also changed the face of many things in Phoenix, including massive redevelopment along its route.

What has been your best training experience to date? Why?
Tips & Tricks webcast by Inga. The Tucson Bentley User group generally has its meetings by WebEx with the live meeting being in Phoenix. We had this particular meeting at ITT’s Tucson Campus. We had a large group of 25-30 people, many of them being first time attendees. Inga’s presentation was fast paced, very informative and had a lasting impression on so many people new to the program as well as the long time users.

How did you get involved as an officer of the Tucson Bentley User Group?
My first CADD manager introduced me to Mark Schneider in the early 90's and I've been attending ever since. When I moved to Tucson in 2008, the user group here was just getting started so I volunteered.

The Bentley Tucson User Group hosts 2 conferences a year. Their next event, the 2015 LEARN Summit, in conjunction with the Arizona MicroStation Local Community on December 11, 2015. To attend or learn more, please visit their website.