I have been a corporate recruiter for nearly 10 years, but my first career was much different. I enlisted in the Air Force on July 4, 1995, and spent my entire Air Force career training and then working as an Airborne Arabic Cryptologic Linguist stationed at RAF Mildenhall, UK. Up until September 11, 2001, I supported Operation Southern Watch, Operation North Watch, Desert Fox and various Mediterranean missions. Following 9/11, I supported Operation Enduring Freedom — the official name used by the government for the Global War on Terrorism. On average during my seven years, I probably spent six months each year deployed to Saudi Arabia, Greece, Turkey and other Middle Eastern countries for various tactical and strategic operations.

After my second enlistment was up, I decided to pursue a career in Human Resources, and obtained my bachelor’s degree in Technical Communications and then my master’s degree in industrial organizational psychology. My first position was as a recruiter at a staffing agency, and one of our clients was an AECOM legacy company. Accepting that position was one of the best decisions I’ve made – turns out I love recruiting and I love HR. I enjoy interacting with people and connecting the right person with the right job. When my manager at the staffing company left for a position with AECOM and asked me to join her, I didn’t hesitate.

I never regretted my decision to join AECOM for a moment. Although working for AECOM versus a military career may appear at first glance to have few similarities, there are many parallels. For instance, the military stresses discipline, responsibility and accountability. And, to be successful at AECOM requires the same traits. At AECOM, I’m a lead recruiter for the Energy, Infrastructure and Industrial Construction (EIC) division. I source job candidates for highly technical positions throughout the world. Much of the time I work independently. But, I am also responsible and work in close concert with a team, much like I did in the military.

I feel that I get to play an amazing word game all day long – and of course coming from a linguistic background, words are my thing. One of the biggest perks, I feel, to working at AECOM is the incredible mentorship from my managers, the learning opportunities and the potential for career growth — the sky really is the limit.