If we are too analytical, we could go on for days trying to figure out the right things to say when we write something to introduce ourselves to strangers. I would rather just lay it all out there and hope you enjoy the read! When I think about my goal for telling you my story, I feel that it’s important that I let you get a glimpse of me as a person, a professional, and my goals for B3H but there will be several things that will lead us into topics throughout the blog later so just hold on for the ride if you’re grasping for more detail.
Who Is Candice as an Individual?
I was born on June 16, 1989 (Gemini to the core) in Humble, TX which is right outside of Houston. I was born to a single mother who moved back home to Texas from Georgia when she found out she was pregnant at 19. I did not meet my biological Father until I was 16 and although I know him, we do not have a close relationship beyond my annual stops in Tennessee as I pass through. Childhood had its trials and tribulations as I managed being a child of a struggling alcoholic and drug addict. I was blessed to have some amazing women to look up to throughout my life that reflected strength, courage, motivation, and work ethics that would surpass many. My mother also struggles with Bipolar Depression and to this day, we struggle to maintain any level of relationship, but the woman has one of those never-ending work ethics and has a heart that will take in anyone in need. One of those women that I mentioned is my Great Aunt (Nanny) who raised my mom since she was a toddler. This woman has been more of a mother figure to me throughout my entire life and I credit so much of my success to her support, love, and just being there in the way she always has. I have a huge extended family that disregards any lack of complete blood relation because we are all family, and I couldn’t be more grateful for them even with the craziness and antics we all bring! My siblings, nieces, and nephews are the highlight of my time off between projects and being “Nene” is my greatest adventure to date!
I graduated from New Caney High School in 2007 as a top 10% student; I was always one of those kids who it came natural to. I was accepted to the college of my choice but fear of leaving home kept me from going so I started at the local Community College and didn’t make it through the semester before quitting. Shortly after leaving school, I took a position that would eventually lead me here. Although I have spent many years raising and helping raise several children, I do not have any biologically. Don’t get it wrong though, I love me some babies and most of my off time is spent with kids that vary from 1 to 17 years old. I nearly got married once but luckily the stars aligned and I didn’t move forward with what would have been a terrible decision. In 2011 I opted to move to Central Texas to be closer to work and as an opportunity to “escape” from where I grew up. In 2016, I purchased my first home in Luling, TX with intentions of selling in 5 years.
I am now 32 years old with two spoiled rotten little “rat” dogs that now travel with me since I am back to a project-based role. I just signed a contract to sell the house so in the next 8 weeks I will be living full time in my 32’ fifth-wheel until I decide on an area that speaks to my heart to buy something new. It will be the first time that I have not maintained a home outside of work travel and I’m excited (with a dash of nervous) for the adventure! I absolutely love to travel, and my favorite thing to do is “going with the flow” of whatever sounds appealing! I spend a lot of time with all the nieces and nephews during my off time and I’m that aunt that is up for driving around blaring music to going to play laser tag on a whim. Photography and being in the presence of water are my two favorite past times outside of the kids and traveling because they bring out my creativity and a sense of peace. The past 4 years have brought me more obstacles than I could have ever imagined, and it created a lot of opportunity to not only work on the areas I needed improvement and growth, but it also provided an opportunity to redefine myself in wonderful ways. I am at a point in my life where I am naturally happy without feeling confinement of something weighing me down.
Who Is Candice as a Professional?
From above you know that I quit college shortly after graduating; in 2010 I opted to start college online as a way to keep myself-occupied because I had been taking care of two amazing little girls full time (4 & 5 at the time) and they were going to go live with their mom for a little while, so I needed a way to keep my mind busy. I obtained my Associates of Arts in Business in 2012. Skipping ahead a few years, I was on a project and a co-worker asked me to look over, provide pointers, and edit a paper he was struggling with for his bachelor’s program. That simple little favor made me question why I wasn’t doing it for myself, so I started back to school. Managing college throughout outage seasons is never the easiest task but I graduated with my bachelor’s in business with a minor in Project Management in 2017. Since then, I have decided I’m done with school, but I have taken on a few additional challenges to keep learning fresh on my mind. The thing I am most proud of is my accreditation through PMI (Project Management Institute) where I earned and currently hold a PMP (Project Management Professional) certification.
I worked several jobs over a span of 5 years from 16 to going full time with my company at 21, but I will focus on the one that leads me here for now. In December of 2007, at 18, I got my first job in a power plant. I was visiting a friend of my moms, and her supervisor asked if I could come help them for one week as a Confined Space Attendant (hole watch). He promised good money and it would be short term, but it would help him out of a tight spot. I reluctantly agreed because I just could not picture myself working in a power plant. Let’s just say, that week turned into a month, and here I am 14 years later still in the same industry for the same company and I absolutely love it! I have held 3 titles in my time throughout this company, but I have always taken on more directive outside of the job description I carried at the time which has done me a great justice. I started as a Site Administrator, spent a few years as Project Coordinator, and my current role is a Field Engineer. We will talk more into detail of what my role consists of and my long-term direction in a later discussion.
What does Candice want for B3H?
My goal for Balancing Hard Hats & Heels is to provide a forum for Women in this industry to have as a resource, trusted network, and safe zone for all the things that we need, want, and face as a woman in this industry. Now don’t get me wrong, men have their challenges too! I will never take away from that or make this a gender slander situation. But let’s be honest for a minute; we work in a male dominated industry and quite frankly the challenges that it brings, both professionally and personally, are different for women than they are for men. My goal is to allow you a place to talk about those things and more importantly to provide guidance and information to each new woman who enters the industry. I LOVE helping another person shine! I LOVE getting to train new people and help them grow because I have hopes that one day, they outshine me at exactly what I’m teaching them! I want to see you all succeed, to grow, be challenged, and to be the absolute best version of yourself! I think with the right network and the proper exposure WE have the power to make B3H another wonderful resource to all women in the construction industry as the number of women throughout it grows. I say WE because YOU are a huge part of this, YOU will make this successful, YOU are the ones that will help us grow and be known! This is not just my journey, or Sydney’s journey, it’s yours too and we can only hope you’ll be willing to be a part of it with us.
I’m almost done talking your ear off! But I want to leave you with one last bit of information
Reading everything to this point you may think I’ve always been an open book but that couldn’t be further from the truth. I’ve spent many years working to be open, to let people in, and more importantly to let people know ME for who I am in all the ways they may or may not like. I still struggle with it at times, but I do know how to be more open now and more willing to understand and appreciate each of us for our differences in viewpoints, learning, and working all together. I ‘m not fearful of letting you know a little about me because how can we build this network if you don’t know who I am? Why would you want to be a part of it when you know nothing about my intentions? We have such an amazing story we can tell through this group, and I want to put my best foot forward to have you be apart of that. I hope you can appreciate the depth I am initially offering and mostly I hope you can see the heart, ambition, and passion I have for this effort. Thank you for the opportunity to take up a little bit of your time today! I’m truly grateful for that chance and I hope you continue to take part in this journey.
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