Yvette Gameros, Assistant Project Manager, has been with C.W. Driver Companies for over 8 years working on projects in the healthcare and higher education markets.
How did you get into the construction industry?
I originally started my career in the construction industry as a structural engineer. One of the projects I helped design began having problems during the construction phase. I had the opportunity to fly out to the project to help fix these issues on site with the team. I quickly realized through collaborating with the project team that I still had a lot to learn about construction. Working on the design side, I had a limited view of construction. Being on site reinvigorated my passion for the industry! At this time, I was still in school to get my masters in structural engineering. After the site visit, I quickly changed my major over to construction management, and the rest is history!
What is the most challenging part of working in the Construction industry?
The most challenging, yet rewarding, part of working in the construction industry is that no two projects are ever alike. You are constantly tested no matter the market or size of the project. The first three projects I ever worked on at C.W. Driver were at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. All of these projects consisted of renovations to various sections of the fully operational hospital. I quickly had to learn how to work in an incredibly sensitive environment, where dust mitigation and construction noise were of the upmost importance. On my recent projects, I have been tasked with coordinating the MEP subcontractors. This can become quite challenging as I deal with a lot of personalities daily. My diverse experience in a variety of markets has allowed me to succeed in this role and has given me the opportunity to expand my industry knowledge.
What is the most rewarding part of your role as Assistant Project Manager?
At C.W. Driver, I have had opportunities to branch outside of my traditional role as Assistant Project Manager. On the Sony 8-Story Office Building project, I was given the chance to sit in on all subcontractor interviews prior to the start of construction. This incredible opportunity allowed me to provide valuable input in the decision-making process of who I would be directly working with on the project. Over the course of this project, the communication and collaboration with trades was strong! I am so thankful that C.W. Driver trusts its employees with more responsibilities than just our traditional duties.
You recently completed the Cal Poly Pomona Student Services Building. What was the most rewarding part of this project?
This iconic building was extremely challenging yet rewarding. The project consisted of the construction of a two building, three-story, 138,400 SF replacement facility with an undulating steel roof design, inspired by the surrounding hills and mountains. This impressive architectural impact sets the building apart as an icon on campus and within the entire CSU system. This complex project required immediate buy-in from the entire project team. I was blown away by the knowledge and passion from the Owner’s Representative, Bruyn Bevans. Without his breadth of knowledge, this project would not have been as successful!
What technology related tools did you implement with your team on the Cal Poly Pomona Student Services Building Project?
The project team utilized Bluebeam to help make this project a success. Essentially the Bluebeam Revu technology offers high quality PDF creation from CAD and Windows files, and an easy to use PDF markup, editing and collaboration for paperless workflow that has been tailored to the construction industry. I was able to collaborate with the trades in real time while coordinating the MEP systems using Bluebeam. The Cal Poly Pomona project required hard lid ceilings, making MEP coordination much trickier due to the need to frame around the MEP systems in the ceilings. Bluebeam allowed me to detect challenges early and workshop issues on the spot with the framer and drywaller! On a complex building like this one, Bluebeam was necessary to our success.
What do you think are the keys to your personal and professional success?
What I think sets me apart are my desire for knowledge and my passion for teaching others. Whether you have been in the industry for two or twenty years, you still have a lot to learn. Use your experience to teach the future generation of construction professionals. You might be surprised and learn something too!
I firmly believe that you drive your own opportunities and create your own rewards. To be successful in your professional life, you need to be with a company that provides more than just opportunities for growth and learning. C.W. Driver not only cares about your professional career, but also your personal life. The executives consider your life outside of work when placing you on a job and reward you for working hard. I’ve worked with large and small construction companies in the industry, and C.W. Driver is the only firm that has provided me with the keys to succeed in every aspect of my life. I am grateful for the opportunities I have been given and am excited to see where my future at C.W. Driver will take me!