Meet Aster Mehari, One of EBA’s 2021 Employee Excellence Award Winners

CAD technology has transformed the engineering design process. What used to take companies weeks and large sums money to complete by hand on paper can now be done electronically and completely in-house. CAD helps project teams share plans in real time and visualize construction, makes modifications easier, improves collaboration and documentation, and more. Because CAD is such a valuable tool, Engineers Week is a perfect time to highlight the importance of CAD technicians like Aster Mehari to every engineering project.

As a child, Aster dreamed of becoming a fashion designer. On the advice of a relative who knew of the great demand for CAD professionals, she later decided to apply her love for creativity to learning CAD design, ultimately earning certifications in both CAD and GIS. Aster joined EBA in February 2018 and has become an integral part of our team.

Aster works primarily with EBA’s water systems engineering department to prepare water and sewer plans, profiles, cross sections, etc., using AutoCAD and MicroStation. However, because of her wide range of skills, she also helps engineers in our civil, transportation, structural, and GIS departments to prepare plans and other drawings.

Based on previous project experience and data, Aster is always looking for a better way to accomplish new project tasks on time and within budget. Her engineering background helps her bring a different perspective and industry knowledge to each design challenge. Because of her work ethic, teamwork, and key role supporting many departments, Aster was named one of EBA’s 2021 Employee Excellence Award winners.

When asked about her advice for any aspiring CAD designers, Aster suggests that they should not limit themselves to only learning CAD, but they should also learn to use additional software to complement their skill set. She also emphasizes the importance of developing excellent communication skills, and notes that CAD technicians should have great attention to detail, work well with teams, and have a passion for learning new things.

“Studying to become a CAD technician is a great fit for girls who like to be creative and are inclined towards design work,” says Aster. Especially as advancements in 3D printing technology are developing rapidly, CAD design will continue to play a big role in changing our world for the better.


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