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Professional Leadership Spotlight: Thomas Wamser, CSCE

Guiding Future Civil Engineers

Serving as President of the Younger Member Group of the Connecticut Society of Civil Engineers (CSCE) Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Thomas Wamser, PE, PTOE, RSP2I is always willing to take on a challenge. “I’m quite busy with everything, but I feel ownership of everything we accomplish,” he said.

Thomas found his way to this leadership role by getting involved and through an invite to some Board meetings through a colleague, and then serving as Vice President. These leadership roles through CSCE influenced him to hone his leadership skills internally at Tighe & Bond, participating in the Aspiring Leaders professional development program where he helped develop the firm’s formal mentorship program. The mentorship project was a natural fit, as Thomas had already been involved with onboarding and mentoring younger staff.

In his role as Assistant Project Manager, Thomas takes ownership of his projects and the younger staff’s development, and his CSCE leadership experience translated well for overseeing his staff’s project work. The organizational and interpersonal skills required for both roles overlap considerably.

Conversely, he has taken the skills he learned in the Aspiring Leaders to his CSCE role, especially communication, time management, and overall management skills.

Thomas spearheads initiatives for the Younger Member Group, including hosting resume reviews with university chapter students to help with job applications and interviews, community service opportunities, educational field trips, dinners with keynote speakers, and social events like sports outings for members to connect.

Thomas Wamser was recognized as ASCE CSCE’s 2023 Young Civil Engineer of the Year.

His leadership efforts led to Thomas being recognized as ASCE CSCE’s 2023 Young Civil Engineer of the Year. The recognition was an honor, he said, and a “good sign” that he’s doing something right.

Looking forward, he hopes to expand upon the Younger Member Group’s work by doing more outreach to K-12 schools and students, establishing events targeted at recruiting and advocating for women in civil engineering, and supporting volunteer efforts where members can apply their engineering expertise to give back.

Mentorship is an important component to success, he said, which includes investing in younger members to help them succeed.

“A lot of time, people are a lot more capable than they probably realize. You should believe your peers when they say you’re qualified. If it seems daunting, just dive in, make the most of it, rely on others where you can. It’s a team and you don’t have to do it alone.”