Rebecca Kerr | A Career Built by Caring About People, Projects and Community

Rebecca Kerr Quote about MTE

June 23, 2022


How long have you worked at MTE?

I don’t think this happens often today, but I’ve been with MTE for nearly my whole engineering career.  It wasn’t my first job out of school, however.  After graduating I joined another engineering firm in Waterloo.  Then a City of Kitchener reviewer suggested I apply at MTE and since I was familiar with Bruce Scheifele, MTE’s founder, through my father and uncle, I took a chance and applied.  I was hired shortly after, starting as a Designer working on private development projects.  Through hard work and dedication, I was given many opportunities to advance in my career into management roles, while still maintaining opportunities to work on projects.

What is your most memorable project at MTE?

This is not any easy question to answer for me; I’ve been involved with so many projects … more than 500! The projects I remember the most are the ones where we helped solve a problem for clients outside of (and not familiar with) the development industry.  I find these projects the most rewarding.  And I’m most proud of our involvement with numerous community and non-profit organizations, most notably Women’s Crisis Services of Waterloo Region, YWCA, A Better Tent City, but there are many more.

What’s been the most significant challenge for you as a leader? As well as a woman in engineering?

Finding good, qualified staff and keeping them engaged long enough for them to realize all the benefits of working at MTE remains the most significant challenge.  And I expect this to continue for a number of years.

As a woman in engineering, I’ve been quite fortunate to have had a number of very supportive supervisors over my career.  They have enabled me to figure out how to balance my work life and home life.  However, I’ve learned that this balancing never stops.  I now work to support other women at MTE in finding their balance, and influencing change at MTE to continue to make this balancing act easier to attain.

What do you think sets MTE apart in our industry?

We care about doing what’s right.  We treat a $500 project with the same level of interest as a $500,000 project.  We want to help.  We care about the communities we live and work in.  And we truly care about our employees.

What would you say to someone considering a career at MTE?

MTE has experienced tremendous growth over my tenure with the company, but it still holds the small company feel.  The opportunities available to young talent at MTE are great, whether someone has management or technical aspirations.  All of our senior leaders are still involved with projects.  We all have technical backgrounds and are now leading the company.

What would you say to a female considering a career in engineering?

Engineering is all about solving problems.  Taking what you learn and know, and applying that to develop the solution.  It is a way of thinking.  And, in my opinion, women are well-suited to engineering.  Problem-solving, multi-tasking and time management are key skills to succeeding in engineering, all of which women tend to do well.  And the best part is, after four years at university, you graduate with a career!


Back to All News Stories