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The place to share our voices with clients, peers and curious neighbors



By Matt B. on 9 September 2021
  • Purpose
  • Vision
  • Values

For the better part of two years, we have confronted the global pandemic and social unrest together. As a direct result of the pandemic, businesses of every size and in every industry were impacted...

By Barbara W. on 23 August 2021
  • Career
  • Journey
  • Summit

For as far back as I have memories, I have been a maker. I am grateful to the millenialists who coined the term that so much more accurately describes us creatives...

  • Insights
  • Parks
  • Benefits

Imagine walking down a street on a hot summer day. Your brow is sweating, and your feet are aching. Then, you come across a park. Its shady, friendly solace beckons you...

By Brad W. on 12 May 2021
  • Career
  • Journey
  • Summit

Brad transferred to UNC Wilmington and was majoring in Education with a minor in History. It was the need for another science elective that brought him to geology...

By Jaymie Kaiser on 19 April 2021
  • Insight
  • Self-Healing Conrete
  • Construction

To understand how we could make self-healing concrete possible in this industry, we have to understand how the concrete works, how it is researched, and how it could benefit the construction industry...

By Starr Hillhouse on 31 March 2021
  • health
  • wellness
  • journey

This is a timeline of my health journey, from cancer diagnosis to feeling healthier than I have in a long time. While it was a tumultuous, scary, and, often, tough journey, it has made me better and stronger...

By Aaron Gross on 12 March 2021
  • geology
  • career path
  • journey

When I began studying geology at UNC, my goal was to find career opportunities in petroleum exploration or mining operations since those industries paid the highest salaries...

By Hannah Hahn on 18 February 2021
  • wfh
  • remote work
  • benefits

When we switched from being in office to working from home full time, there was a heavy sense of doubt around how effective our remote work would be. Many (including me) had never worked remotely at all before...

By Lauren Stearley, CDMP on 28 January 2021
  • mentorship
  • guideance
  • career

January is National Mentorship Month, and that prompted me to ask myself why is mentorship important enough to get its own month? According to Merriam-Webster, a ‘mentorship’ is the ‘influence, guidance, or direction given by a mentor’, while a mentor is ‘a trusted counselor or guide’...

By Shanika Baughman on 8 January 2021
  • Diversity
  • Inclusion
  • Plan

For most companies, inclusion and diversity have been two hot topics, especially within the last few years. Efforts to improve upon inclusion, diversity, equity and access are important and go a long way to foster a positive, diverse work environment...

By Frankie Winn on 6 December 2020
  • Career
  • Journey
  • Summit

I graduated from Cape Fear Community College in Wilmington, NC in 1995 with an Associates in Applied Sciences in Mechanical Drafting and Design Engineering Technology. The odd part is that I had planned on taking a math class that I was lacking...

By Anne Darby, AICP on 18 November 2020
  • Comprehensive Plans
  • Community
  • Necessity

Think about your commute to work. (There is a high probability you’re working from home right now, so think about your commute pre-pandemic.) Chances are, you are one of over 76% of Americans who drive to work alone every day, over the paved roadways planned, funded and constructed by local decision-makers and your state department of transportation...

By Nikki Orie on 9 November 2020
  • Apprenticeship
  • Overview
  • Value

Recently, I attended an Apprenticeship Meeting at Wake Tech Community College to hear more about “Debt Free Education”. As I listened to the speakers discuss the industry workforce shortages in manufacturing, electrical, HVAC, welding, plumbing, construction, etc...

By Doug Edmunds on 27 October 2020
  • IT Director
  • Journey
  • Summit

In the fall of 2017, after a successful and highly rewarding 20+ year run in various information technology roles at UNC-Chapel Hill, I took a huge leap of faith and accepted an offer from Summit Design and Engineering Services as its first director of IT...

By Ginny Kirk Andrews on 23 October 2020
  • essential marketing
  • A/E/C
  • proactive

Recently, I was scrolling LinkedIn and stumbled on an article that caught my eye. The article “This is Marketing’s Moment” was published in Engineering News Record (ENR)...

By Eric Silinsh, AIA on 28 September 2020
  • teaching
  • pandemic
  • parents

In our previous post, I described the idea of using our pre-existing resilience to respond to the radical new situations we’ve experienced this year...

By Eric Silinsh, AIA on 20 August 2020
  • future
  • design
  • change

Summit is discovering solutions to the question ‘what do we do now, with everything going on?'. In her previous post, Lisa Cutshaw outlined a number of issues which we, as designers, engineers, and citizens will need to consider as we move forward in these chaotic time...

By Chris Berg, PE on 12 September 2020
  • hurricane season
  • recovery
  • damage

In this series so far, we have explained two major effects from hurricanes, debris and stormwater, as well as how engineers and planners work to mitigate those effects...

By Hannah Hahn on 13 August 2020
  • remote work
  • new job
  • prepare

The first day starting a new job is always intimidating. During a pandemic it can be downright overwhelming. Working remotely adds additional layers of stress and complexity to the process.

By Eric Rabon on 12 August 2020
  • hurricane season
  • stormwater
  • damage

For our second entry, I’m going to shift the focus to something even more dangerous: stormwater. You might be thinking, there is no way a few inches of rain is more dangerous than your lawn chair flying at 80 mph.

By Ginny Kirk Andrews on 28 July 2020
  • virtual
  • communication
  • building community

In the A/E/C industry, most firms have a split of filed employees and office personnel. The field personnel at Summit often refer to their truck as their office, and with that comes distractions and difficulties that office people don’t have to deal with...

By Lisa Cutshaw, PLA on 24 July 2020
  • 5 ways
  • design
  • pandemic resistant

Since the pandemic started, there has been a lot of discussion about how this situation has given us an opportunity to take real action to solve long-standing problems. One thing everyone agrees on is that it’s hard to predict what the pandemic will permanently change in our lives...

By Eric Rabon on 10 July 2020
  • hurricane season
  • debris monitoring
  • response

Everybody knows the precautions to take before and during a storm: store up on food, board the windows, stay indoors, but what about everything that happens after that when you’re ready to get back to your everyday life? Who helps get communities up and running again?

By Lauren Stearley on 17 June 2020
  • women in engineering
  • engineering day
  • STEM

Of the STEM fields, engineering has the smallest number of female professionals. To change that, we have to show not only women in engineering (a field that comprises of more than just engineers) but also show the how.

By Eric Rabon on 3 June 2020
  • job interviews
  • steps
  • engineering

It’s about time something was easy for once. I’m going to delve into some strategies for the final part of this process, the interview, to help make this the simplest part of the journey....

By Craig Wilson, AICP on 29 May 2020
  • types of planners
  • communities
  • helping

Often when a Planner identifies what their career and title are, listeners can become confused because “Planner” is such a broad term. To add to the confusion, the most common name for the master’s degree earned by many Planners...

By Lauren Stearley on 7 May 2020
  • engineering firm
  • non engineer
  • perks

Every company regardless of what they do needs marketing, business development, human resources, billing, IT, administration, and even graphic design and web development. So if you’re scrolling through job opportunities and that A/E/C firm pops up, don’t be so hasty in scrolling past!

By Lauren Stearley on 4 May 2020
  • engineering
  • first engineering job
  • resume

If you are just out of college and are looking for an engineering position, it can be challenging to know what to put in your resume. This blog will tell you what to put in your resume for your first engineering job and provide some tips on making your resume uniquely you.

By Ciara Fischer on 28 April 2020
  • stress awareness
  • pandemic
  • coping mechanisms

It is no secret that the pandemic has affected all of us in one way or another, especially when it comes to our jobs. These changes happened suddenly due to the pandemic and have caused employees new stressors in their jobs that may not have been there otherwise.

By Ciara Fischer on 21 April 2020
  • project planning
  • grants
  • obtain investment

A neighborhood revitalization doesn’t just happen overnight. There are multiple steps included in the process before the work in the neighborhood can even begin. One of those definitive steps is obtaining funding for the project.

By Patrick Cummings, PE on 24 March 2020
  • working safely
  • covid-19
  • tips

If I told you in 2019 instead of Bitcoin being the hottest worldwide currency in 2020 that toilet paper and hand sanitizer would be, would you have believed me? Our team here at Summit is working to stay one step ahead of the COVID-19 outbreak (also known as the Coronavirus).

  • architecture
  • art
  • design

When it comes to how we experience our world, how well it was designed is fundamental. Architectural design affects our immediate functional lives, it is the physical art in which we live, and that which ripples out to flavor our communities and provide unique places across the globe.

By Lauren Stearley on 5 March 2020
  • blog
  • licensure
  • PE
  • engineering

As a PE in your home state, you get to benefit from all of those advantages. But if you work for a company looking to expand, you may be requested to work in or oversee work completed in multiple states – and you’ll need to be just at ease out of state as you are in state. An answer to that problem? Get your PE in another state!

Civil Engineering Plans
By Lauren Stearleyon 25 February 2020
  • blog
  • welcome
  • startup

Welcome to Groundwork, Summit Design and Engineering Services’ new blog. As an architecture, engineering and planning firm, we have a diverse range of talented and driven people improving their communities through their work.