Before I get into this interview, let me tell you a bit about me and why did I engage in a water resources career before I move this to the about section. Back in 1985, I was 12 years old, and my little brother was 7. At that time, my father, who is an architect, was also a developer and contractor. He bought about 30 acres of land in a lovely and pricey neighborhood at a low price. He designed and constructed 47 mansions. My brother's best friend's dad was a prominent young doctor. And they were going to live next to us at the brand new hood.
But, on the night of October 7th of 1985, a storm registered more than 24 inches of rain in 24 hours. A bridge foundation at PR-52, the main highway in Puerto Rico, collapsed due to scour. The authorities recovered only 23 of the 29 bodies that drove to the precipice. Among those bodies, the mother and father of my stepbrother.
That is why today, my brother is a structural engineer, and I am a water resources engineer. Back then, we knew what we wanted to do. It got personal! Yes, we design bridges together, and we remember.
Water resources engineering gained a lot of popularity with the development and access to GIS systems during the late '90s and early stages of this century. Yet I was very skeptical and selective to place my career in the hands of anybody.
Every time I touched the subject with my colleagues, there was a name that popped up in the conversation, Dr. Greg Morris. I was about to go back to the University of Miami and continue postgraduate studies when I heard that Dr. Morris was teaching at a local University.
Within a week, I signed up. It took me 3.5 years to do my masters. Because I took all the essential classes with this fellow, I can tell you that it was the best career decision I ever made.