In our second installment of Consultants in Conference Rooms Getting Coffee, Consultant Jamie Segovia, shares how she decided to work in this industry, what she enjoys working on, and how she likes change and challenges. Get to know Jamie below.
What is your background (where are you from, where did you go to school…)?
I was born in the Philippines and came here when I was three. I grew up in Long Beach, CA and attended St. Joseph’s High School in Lakewood and went to Cal State Long Beach. I studied Bio-Physiology which has nothing to do with what I do now [laughs]. After working for a bit, I realized this wasn’t the field that I wanted to work in. I took a job at a school that taught drafting and design. I got interested in the program and ended up really enjoying the work. I worked as an intern and helped my professors with side projects. I learned CAD, Civic 3D, Revit; a lot of the design tools that I use today.
How did you become part of the Vantage team?
About halfway through my design program I really wanted to work somewhere that I can gain as much experience as possible. With the help of the career center at school I came across the Vantage listing. I didn’t know I was going to go into technology, but I realized that technology is always changing, and I love change. I need something that’s new and not the same thing over and over. I applied and was the first Designer at Vantage and now I’m a Consultant.
And how long have you been at Vantage?
I am coming up on four years this June.
What do you do at Vantage?
[laughs] this is the hardest question to answer
Well how about you put everything you do into one sentence, then we can go from there.
I listen to what our users need and with our team, we help find a solution. Sometimes what they need isn’t actually what they need. Sometimes they don’t think big enough; there are technologies out there that can help. Then sometimes they think too big and what they think they need, runs way over their budget. We can find a solution that stays within budget and gives the clients what they need.
I listen to what our users need and with our team, we help find a solution.
When I first started working here, I was on the production team working with Revit and my first projects were in healthcare. Then I worked on higher education projects on projects on the west coast and east coast. Now I am managing projects with LA County. I like this role of being a project manager.
You’re kind of working with every type of market
Yes! It’s amazing how when you switch between different markets you have to adjust your plan and adjust your brain to think of what is the best solution for this institution and type of facility. I like how every project is different. I like the change and I like the challenge.
I like the change and I like the challenge.
What were some of the projects you’ve worked on recently?
I’m working on a new type of project with our strategic team. It’s a library assessment. I really like this work because I get to help the client by showing them what other facilities around them are doing. I get to communicate with the client directly and can understand their needs. I’m also working on Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey, which is a large multi-phase project. We’re almost done on Sutter Health’s Van Ness Campus; that should be opening soon. University of California San Francisco Block 33 is in construction right now. I’m managing two projects with LA County, the Hall of Records 7th floor space and the Department of Consumer and Business Affairs. A new project is the Bakersfield College Gymnasium which I’m really excited about.
I get to communicate with the client directly and can understand their needs.
What’s the coolest thing you’ve done at work recently?
I really enjoy the library assessment that I’m working on in Garland, TX. It’s more intimate since these facilities that we are comparing our client to, are right in their own backyard. We show the client this is where you’re at and this is where you should be, based on those around you. On my other projects we show the client what the industry is doing, and it might not necessarily pertain to the client’s environment or culture. By using neighboring facilities as a bench-marker you can show the client’s facility relative to others around them. I also like doing the research on the other facilities; I learn so much! It also makes me look around my own neighborhood and analyze the facilities around me. I wish my local library could have all of these great features.
I have also worked on very complex, multi-phased projects, like Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey and Providence Tarzana Medical Center. These two in particular are very complex because there are interim phases that we have to account for. We have to build a temporary space that can work alongside the existing systems while construction is taking place because the facilities are still operating. Patients and staff are relying on these systems to work flawlessly while they’re relocated in a temporary space. When designing multi-phase projects, you also have to understand that the phase you are currently working on will affect the phases later on in the project.
When designing multi-phase projects, you also have to understand that the phase you are currently working on will affect the phases later on in the project.
It’s like building an airplane while you’re flying
Exactly! While also fixing parts of the plane that already exists. It’s challenging but I love a good challenge.
What do you like most about working at Vantage?
We have an environment that forces us to grow. We are able to learn from our mistakes; what went wrong, how can we fix it, and what can we do moving forward. The environment is comfortable and welcoming. I also like that technology always changes; I learn something new with every project. My work is never monotonous.
We have an environment that forces us to grow.
What do you do for fun outside of work?
I like to ride my bike down the beach with my dog Weezer in the basket. I like crafting; anything to do with my hands really, like scrap-booking, gardening, organizing.
What’s a fun fact about you many people may not know?
I love to read and actually I have a small book collection. My dad would travel a lot when I was a kid and would bring back a book for me. So, I have about three bookshelves worth of books. My dream is to have a library in my house. I also loved reading so much that I wrote my own sci-fi novel in junior high. I love writing almost as much as reading.