Javiera Saba, ’23, has always been fascinated with how devices function and how they are assembled. Her passion is no surprise, as engineering runs in her family. 

One of her brothers is a mechanical engineer, while the other works in the construction industry. Saba will be the first female engineer in her family and extended family. She spent her first three undergraduate years at another college before transferring to Farmingdale State College last year.

“I always knew I wanted to do something with engineering,” said the Civil Engineering Technology major who lives in Valley Stream. “It’s very interesting to see how things are done, how things came into place, and what worked.

“I like that the commute is not too far,” Saba noted about her move to FSC. “Also, not many colleges offer this major.” The faculty’s dedication to ensuring students master complex concepts has also impressed her. “My advisor is amazing; everyone is so helpful about teaching and explaining.”

"Saba is a student who not only excels academically but also exhibits leadership and organizes community events," said Dr. Bahar M. Zoghi, Assistant Dean and Acting Chairperson of the Civil Engineering Technology Department.

She takes advantage of FSC’s many opportunities. During the summer of 2022, Saba had an internship with a marine construction company and was intrigued by the process of working underwater. “It was very new for me,” she continued. “Even if you can’t see under the water, you are still able to make things.”

Transportation is a particular interest of Saba’s and she hopes to explore jobs in that area of civil engineering. “I like the idea of designing things, working with trains, bridges, roads, and seeing what the designs do,” she said. She also plans to earn a master’s degree in civil engineering and get her professional engineer’s license.

To help prepare for that, Saba is president of FSC’s chapter of the American Society of Student Engineers and has helped bring engineers to campus to talk about their work. Next year, she is planning several field trips so students can visit work sites. She also is a member of the Muslim Student Association (MSA) and mentors underclassmen in the department, added Zoghi.

Moving to FSC has brought many benefits, according to Saba. “I would definitely recommend FSC,” she said. “Everyone is so willing to help you out. If you don’t understand something, someone will help.”