Women in Construction – Sophia Krocak

Photo of a sunrise
Sophia Krocak is a Construction Associate for a national homebuilder, currently pursuing her Bachelors in Construction Management. After interning for a year working on mainly townhouses, she currently works on a new development with 4 series of homes. I was excited to talk to Sophia and get her perspective on being a woman in the construction industry because she is still relatively new to the workforce.

by Michelle A. Cilip

Sophia’s father owned a construction company and would bring her to job sites when she was younger, just for the fun of it. Each site was different as far as scale and scope of work, and the type of clientele they served, which she found she really enjoyed. So when she finished highschool, she looked into degrees in engineering or manufacturing, but ended up discovering Construction Management. What sealed the deal for her? The courses offered to go with the degree! She also benefited from the mentorship she found in her instructors at Dunwoody.

Her favorite things about her job are the people and the process, and she appreciates that she has a schedule and rhythm to her day. She gets to learn everyday, and she enjoys practicing her Spanish conversational skills with subcontractors on the jobsite. While it sounds like her days are pretty routine, each day is different, or as she puts it, “Everyday is a box of chocolates.” Every day is a new challenge, or a new problem to solve.

Her office is tucked away in a model home on the jobsite, and she spends her days meeting with homeowners and doing walkthroughs at appropriate milestones, as well as tackling each days’ punch list items.

The most challenging part comes from those daily punch lists, and their prioritization. Figuring out what has to get done today, and what will be most beneficial to get done, is essential in keeping her organized. Her secret weapon? Coffee (and not a secret)!

I had to ask her about Women’s Workwear, and her outlook is tried and true: When she finds something she likes and gets the size right, she sticks with it and orders multiples (PPE included). She loves Carhartt pants, especially fleece lined ones for the Minnesota winters! The one thing she could do without though, is her hair getting tangled in her hard hat, and I think I have to back her up on this one.

For anyone looking to go the same path as Sophia, she had some pretty honest advice.

“It’s going to be hard. Network is going to be beneficial. Get comfortable with having hard experiences, learn from them and have new experiences, knowing that there are going to be times that you are going to fail or do something wrong, but the industry has been pretty welcoming to ‘it’s okay to make mistakes and we’re going to go forward from there.’”

If she’s ever felt like she was treated differently for being a female in construction, she says it’s hit or miss. Instead, she focuses on building a strong rapport with her colleagues and building those relationships. When she does have the odd interaction, though, she holds her own and shows her skill.

I loved Sophia’s fresh perspective as she starts out in her career, and her enthusiasm for what she does was inspiring!