Alum recognized in civil engineering

Betsy Kirtland, E16, EG17, was named one of 10 New Faces of Civil Engineering Professionals by the American Society of Civil Engineers.
A professional headshot of Betsy Kirtland, E16, EG17

Each year the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) highlights ten notable early professionals in the field of civil engineering. In 2023, Betsy Kirtland, E16, EG17, was named one of the ASCE 10 New Faces of Civil Engineering Professionals. Awardees are selected for their community service work, organizational leadership, communication skills, and industry involvement.

At Tufts, Kirtland earned her BS in Civil Engineering with a minor in Architectural Studies and her master’s in Civil and Environmental Engineering with a focus on structural engineering. She credits her time at Tufts with playing an important role in shaping her career path. Although Kirtland had been interested in an engineering career since childhood, her experience at Tufts affirmed her decision. She recalls, “I felt lucky to have professors in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering who were knowledgeable in their fields but also took the time to get to know their students.” Beyond the classroom experience, Kirtland also appreciated the opportunity to connect with peers from other disciplines.

Tufts has been a springboard to success for Kirtland. She currently works as a structural engineer on the bridge design team at Stantec, a global design and delivery firm. In addition to her recognition from ASCE, she was recognized as a Young Professional of the Year by the American Council of Engineering Companies of Massachusetts in 2022. “I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t attended Tufts,” she says.

Kirtland’s positive experience at Tufts contributed to her passion for nurturing the next generation of civil engineers. She is now a part-time lecturer in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Tufts and teaches a first-year course called Bridges for Resilient Cities. She hopes to shift existing perceptions of the field of civil engineering and continue to foster a diverse and inclusive discipline. “We need to bring passion and excitement to the field so that we are attracting a more diverse group of young engineers,” says Kirtland.

Founded in 1852, ASCE is the nation’s oldest engineering society. The organization aims to advance civil engineering through professional development and public-focused programs.