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Posted 9/26/2013

Release no. 13-076


Contact
Jean M. Pavlov
904-232-1996
jean.m.pavlov@usace.army.mil

 

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ south Puerto Rico resident engineer focused on promoting STEM education and careers

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District’s south Puerto Rico resident engineer, Pablo Vázquez-Ruiz, was recently elected president of the Ponce Chapter of the College of Engineers and Surveyors of Puerto Rico (CIAPR in Spanish acronym) as well as treasurer of the College of Engineers and Surveyors of Puerto Rico.

As resident engineer in the Corps’ Ponce Resident Office, Vázquez-Ruiz oversees the Portugués Dam project, the first thick-arch roller-compacted concrete dam built by the Corps and a project that has been used as a “virtual university” to provide a unique training opportunity for engineers from across the nation. As president of CIAPR, he has a similarly distinctive opportunity to help promote Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is an advocate for the critical role that STEM education plays in enabling the United States to remain economic and technological leaders of the global marketplace, and enabling the Department of Defense and the U.S. Army in the security of our nation. Vazquez-Ruiz’s dual leadership role provides a unique opportunity for him to promote both CIAPR and Corps goals to inspire current and future generations to pursue careers in STEM fields.

“In CIAPR, our highest priority is continuing education,” said Vázquez-Ruiz. “Without a doubt, better trained professionals render better service to our community.”

Construction on Portugués Dam began in 2008 and is scheduled to be finished by the end of 2013. When completed, it will provide flood protection for almost 40,000 people and more than 13,000 homes in the city of Ponce. Throughout construction of the dam, Vázquez-Ruiz has sponsored many field trips for engineering students, professional engineering organizations and civic groups, including three engineering schools on the island.

Born in Ponce, Puerto Rico, Vázquez-Ruiz graduated from the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez campus with a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering, with honors, and a master’s degree, Magna
Cum Laude, in business administration from the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico. He joined the Corps of Engineers in 1979 and became resident engineer for Jacksonville District’s Ponce Resident Office
in 2001.

For further information about the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Portugués Dam, please visit:
http://www.saj.usace.army.mil/Missions/CivilWorks/FloodControl/PortuguesDam.aspx.
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Army Corps career corps education engineering Pablo Vázquez-Ruiz Ponce puerto rico school STEM U.S. Army Corps of Engineers USACE