Caley Dallman always knew she wanted to help others but wasn’t sure exactly how she wanted to make her impact.
“I spent most of my life thinking I wanted to be a teacher but learned that engineering, especially civil, could provide a fulfilling career. I could help people by improving infrastructure,” said Dallman.
Growing up Englewood, Colorado, Dallman struggled with math. But it became her favorite subject with the help of her dad and her high school calculus teacher, who encouraged her to pursue an engineering career. After shadowing a friend’s mom, who was a CSU civil engineering graduate, she enrolled in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering in the Walter Scott, Jr. College of Engineering.
In addition to studying, Dallman worked as a nanny for a Fort Collins family and at the Bagel Place in the Lory Student Center, and participated in various extracurricular activities including grading for an introductory level Construction Management class this year. She was particularly excited to join the Society of Women Engineering chapter and serve as a role model for high school girls. She moved up the ranks from membership coordinator to secretary and section president.
She created an event called “Stick with SWE” that gave 23 high school girls the opportunity to shadow CSU SWE members for a day. She is proud that five students ended up attending CSU, and one became an SWE member.
“I didn’t realize the impact of outreach on young women until that moment,” she said.
During Dallman’s sophomore year, she studied in Costa Rica.
“It was amazing getting to know the people, language, and culture and immersing myself in a different part of the world,” she said. “Costa Rica opened my eyes to the world that exists outside of my personal bubble, and I wouldn’t trade that for anything.”
She also shared the experience with other students as part of a panel of engineering students who studied abroad.
“It’s a common misconception that engineers can’t study abroad, but I believe it’s definitely a possibility and it was so great to see the huge turnout and to encourage other engineering students that they can (and should) study abroad!” Dallman said.
After graduation this month, Dallman has a position lined up at the Walsh Group in Seattle where she previously completed an internship. She eventually wants to teach high school STEM classes, where she can inspire students just as her high school calculus teacher did for her.
“My time here has been so special and the ways in which attending CSU has enriched my life are immeasurable,” she added.