University of Pittsburgh

Alumni Spotlight: Engineering/MBA Grad Named Pennsylvania Young Engineer of Year

Friday, March 21, 2014

Anthony Fitzpatrick (MBA/ENGR ’10, ENGR ’03), P.E., CCM, served for five years in the U.S. Navy Civil Engineering Corps, where he completed projects in Cuba, Greece and Tennessee. His natural next step was to build his business background.

Fitzpatrick enrolled in the University of Pittsburgh’s Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business and Swanson School of Engineering’s joint-degree MBA and Master of Science in Engineering program. Soon after, his newfound understanding of the business side of the equation complemented his additional technical skills in engineering.

“I learned human resources and people management skills from the military,” says Fitzpatrick, whose degree led to a job as a project manager with Michael Baker Jr. Inc. (Baker).  “But business school helped me refine those skills—it helped me understand budgets, financing and accounting, which are so critical to successfully managing private sector projects and overall business management.”

Fitzpatrick’s dual focus is now paying off.  The Pennsylvania Society of Professional Engineers selected him over numerous nominees statewide as its 2013 Young Engineer of the Year.  His supervisor nominated him for the award after the quality work that Fitzpatrick produced for the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Middle East District, Duquesne Light Company, Allegheny County Department of Public Works, and various oil and natural gas clients in western Pennsylvania.

“It’s an honor to have been selected for this prestigious award and receive recognition from your peers in the engineering profession,” Fitzpatrick continues.  “I was simply doing my job and as always doing my best on any assigned task.”

With MBA in hand, Fitzpatrick is more aggressively broadening and accelerating his career path.  At Baker, he is responsible for operational management including budgets and forecasting, project/program execution and delivery, and project resource management.  In assignments with the USACE, he provided oversight for $1.2 million in design services and more than $20 million in construction management services.  Ongoing projects include the construction of a dining facility for the Pakistan Air Force, the renovation of a U.S. Coast Guard Air Station in Savannah, Ga., and the maintenance and construction of roadways for oil and gas clients.

“My Navy civil engineering experience was good background for these types of projects,” Fitzpatrick says. “It’s the MBA, however, that gives me added insights into the business-related decision-making processes—a huge workplace advantage.”

While a student at Katz and the Swanson School, Fitzpatrick received a scholarship from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to complete research for roadway construction. Fitzpatrick, in conjunction with Baker, developed an environmental sustainability model for highway construction, called GreenSCOR. Baker and other Departments of Transportation continue to use sustainability/green certification programs.

Fitzpatrick holds a professional license in civil engineering and a certificate in construction management. He is a member of the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME), Construction Management Association of America (CMAA), and Pennsylvania Society of Professional Engineers (PSPE).