Ken Maschke
Ken Maschke

Ken is structural engineer with Thornton Tomasetti in Chicago, specializing in forensic engineering and designing building renovations. Long-time readers of this blog have followed Ken’s career path from entry level to manager, with stops in Denmark and France. He is also an adjunct professor in the Masters of Architecture program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he teaches structural engineering to aspiring architects. Ken believes that sharing his personal experiences will entertain and enlighten emerging leaders in civil engineering.

Posts by this contributor

The Emerging Engineer

new grain elevator
August 25, 2014

Chicago’s city elders once resisted the establishment of train routes to service regional farmers. They feared that the local economy would collapse if the farmers didn’t travel to the city to...
Read more >>

The Emerging Engineer

August 7, 2014

The most dreaded transition in most engineers’ careers is bearing down on me - soon I will be equally responsible for bringing in work as in executing projects. The two roles seem at odds in many...
Read more >>

The Emerging Engineer

July 22, 2014

Identifying and responding appropriately to the different personality types of colleagues and clients is important as your career advances. Initially I viewed personality assessments as one half-step...
Read more >>

The Emerging Engineer

Sears Tower
July 9, 2014

Approximately 1.5 million tourists visit the Willis Tower Skydeck each year. Few of them will glimpse the original Sears tower. The North Lawndale neighborhood of Chicago was once home to Sears...
Read more >>

The Emerging Engineer

Jardine water purification plant, bottom left
July 2, 2014

Adjacent to Chicago's Navy Pier, the Jardine water purification plant is the largest capacity water filtration plant in the world. It delivers almost a billion gallons of potable water daily, serving...
Read more >>

The Emerging Engineer

June 24, 2014

The large stock of high rise buildings built during the 60s and 70s are nearing their planned retirement. Many would argue that these buildings have many good years ahead and that the notion of a...
Read more >>

The Emerging Engineer

June 4, 2014

There's probably no confusing your graduate curriculum with finishing school but a few hours of study on office etiquette might be the best spent time for a successful career. Office managers,...
Read more >>

The Emerging Engineer

USS Constitution
May 29, 2014

Batten the hatches! Roll out the cannon! Swab, load, fire! The sailors on the USS Constitution, a.k.a. Old Ironsides, could shoot at roughly twice the rate of her British counterparts. Combined with...
Read more >>

The Emerging Engineer

IMG_2222
March 21, 2014

The blast furnaces at the Arcelor Mittal mill in Burns Harbor, Indiana must operate continuously. Restarting a furnace costs approximately $5 million. Three shifts therefore work around the clock...
Read more >>

The Emerging Engineer

Student_Natchez_Havely copy
March 14, 2014

Chances are you’re taking photos a lot of photos, for work… for family… just for fun. Are your photos vibrant, interesting, or provocative? If so, you may have the opportunity to be published...
Read more >>