Engineers Week: Meet Mitch!

Name: Mitch Hansel

Years of experience: 28 years

A fun fact about myself: I was a two-time state qualifier in wrestling.

A single word to define me: Committed

I would be lost without: My wife

When did you know you wanted to be an engineer?  It was my senior year in high school while discussing my future path with my cousin on the swings in Matter Park.

What’s been your favorite F&V project to work on and why? It was an ADA ramp project in Fairmount. After the project was completed, the clerk-treasurer told me about a vet who no longer needed to ride his motorized scooter in the street from his apartment to downtown.

How do you feel are you making a difference to the engineering industry/community?  Throughout my career I have trained up great engineers and technicians who have gone on to do amazing work. I have helped make highways and intersections safer and buildings and infrastructure more accessible to the elderly and disabled. I helped improve commutes with better and more efficient roads and traffic signals. I have created recreational opportunities for communities, made streams cleaner with sewer separations and sewer lining project and reduced flooding with detention pond designs.

What we do every day makes lives better, communities safer and more accessible, and improves the quality of life for everyone. I love what I do and the communities that give me the privilege of helping them.

How has a mentor helped you grow as an engineer / how have you helped an engineer grow in their career? I had lots of bosses help me learn about leadership, customer service, management and sales through book clubs, presentations, and one on one discussions. “If you have the skills to make friends, you have the skills to market” and “Your network is your net worth” were two sayings that have always stuck with me.

When I was at INDOT, the first EIT I hired was Jennifer Braun. I worked with her for five years then got a better job in the private sector. Jennifer took over my position as the Head Design Engineer at INDOT Fort Wayne District and has done amazing work for them.

When I was at Bunnell Land Surveying, the first EIT I hired was Jay Wyss. When I left Bunnell to join F&V, I got the opportunity a year later to hire Jay again. After 5 to 6 years of working with him, he is more than ready to take over for me while I pursue more sales opportunities.  

If you could work on any project (future or past – and doesn’t need to be F&V) what would it be and why? I always dreamed of designing an interstate highway from scratch. I will have to settle for Sim City.

What are you most looking forward to (career-wise or in general) in 2020? I’m taking on more of a business development role and selling our amazing company and team to my friends in Indiana.