Home   /   News   /   Engineer Spotlight: ...
February 23, 2024

Engineer Spotlight: Jay Bielanski

Engineer Spotlight: Jay Bielanski Header Image

What inspired you to pursue a career in engineering?  

I enjoyed math and science as a kid. When considering majors in high school, it seemed like a natural fit.

Why did you select your area of specialty?

Going into college, I didn’t know what discipline I wanted to major in. A course in my first semester allowed me to try many of the disciplines for a few weeks – civil, mechanical, electrical, and bio-medical. I enjoyed electrical the most.

What do you like most about being part of a water-focused consulting engineering firm?

Water and wastewater infrastructure has lots of challenges: it’s a 24/7/365 operation and requires creative solutions to complex problems. The facilities are similar, but each is unique, and each project is different. The people in the industry are fantastic, very friendly, and helpful; it’s a great community. I like that what I do has a positive effect on the environment and the daily lives of many people.

How do you approach problem-solving on your projects?

I try to keep the big picture in mind: What is the goal of the project and how can the design achieve that goal in an efficient, reliable, safe, cost-effective manner? When diving into the details, I try my hardest to produce the best solution based on the information that I have. When I run into obstacles, I know a whole team of Donohue engineers is behind me who can help me find the right solution to the problem.

What is the most challenging project you were involved in?

I was involved in a plant-wide electrical distribution replacement project that included medium voltage switchgear, unit substations, and motor control centers. The project was at the center of a dozen other process upgrades occurring at the same plant. Replacing the existing infrastructure while coordinating with other ongoing projects at various stages of design and construction, and also planning for the future, was very challenging.

What do you think the future holds for engineering, and what emerging trends excite you?

Engineering has a very bright future as evidenced by the current work environment; there is an urgent need for engineers of all disciplines. Water and wastewater infrastructure is a foundational aspect to every type of community and business. What the infrastructure looks like will change, but the need for water and wastewater services will always be there. I’m excited about the potential to employ new technologies to further protect and enhance our water resources and to continually help communities renew their infrastructure to provide safe and reliable services.

What accomplishment are you most proud of?

I’ve been fortunate enough to see numerous projects through, from planning to design to construction. I am most proud that the clients we work with continue to come back to Donohue for help with their most challenging projects. That they trust our advice and guidance and want to continue to work with our team is very satisfying. 

What advice would you give to the next generation of engineers?

You don’t need to know all the answers. Engineering is about problem solving and working as a team to find the best solution to the problem. Use every experience as a learning opportunity and don’t be afraid to ask questions or ask for help.

Share this on: