Jennifer Oltman

Jennifer Oltman

Title
Staff Engineer
Organization
Lippincott Jacobs Consulting Engineers
Location
PA, United States
Jennifer Oltman
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Biography
Ms. Oltman has over eight (8) years of experience in the environmental industry. This includes over six (6) years directly in dam engineering, including inspection, design, plan preparation, permitting, construction observation, emergency procedures, maintenance and ongoing regulatory compliance. Ms. Oltman is proficient in construction practices, means and methods for Dams in the State of New Jersey, as well as installation of stormwater treatment devices, construction of infiltration ponds and remedial action.
Answers by Jennifer Oltman

Hi. These courses will suit you well for environmental engineering. I am not familiar with your curriculum requirements, however, in the States, I never took any mechanics based courses during University. All of my education was based around what you described: physics, chemistry, biology and maths. To achieve an environmental engineering degree from Drexel University (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania), I was required to take a great deal of chemistry and math courses. I would also recommend that you begin to think about a path of environmental engineering and your choices for study will become more clear. For example, as an environmental engineer, you can focus on remediation and contaminant transport, etc, which would be all chemistry.  I, however, focus more on streambank restoration, construction of dams and spillways, wetlands, etc. Therefore my profession is more hydraulic, or math, based. Thank you! Good Luck.

Yes, absolutely Hallie. This was one of the reasons I wanted to become an environmental engineer. I know that I didn't want to always be sitting behind a desk! It depends what kind of career path you choose for yourself, but I knew I wanted to work outdoors. Since graduation from college about 10 years ago, I have had three different jobs. My first job out of college was dealing directly with remediation, site clean up contaminants, etc. This position allowed me time out of the office for things like investigative sampling. My second position was as a consulting engineer. I worked to design dam structures, infiltration basins, wetlands, and streambanks. I was able to be outdoors quite often (but not all the time) with this position as well, for things like inspections or observing construction activities. With my current position, I am outside the majority of the time. I now strictly oversee the construction of dams and I travel to various locations around the State.

 

absolutely not. It depends on the track you choose. I work in the environmental and construction management fields. I split time between office and field. I get to work on project design with other engineers and I also get to see some of those projects being implemented. Some examples of projects are dam design, lake management, streambank restoration, wetlands creation, etc.  

There are many different paths that you can take as an "environmental engineer". Science is directly involved in all of these paths. My main focus is water resources and science definitely plays a huge role in that field. We have to understand a great deal of chemistry, to identify pollutants to water and soils and the subsequential environmental impacts. We also have to understand fish, wildlife and plant habitats when working in the water resources field of environmental engineering, a few examples where this is important are designing stormwater management structures, rehabilitation of dams, and wetlands creation or restoration. The best part of environmental engineering for me is being able to see, explore and create first hand in the field. I get to travel to locally to many different places.