Next Stop: Engineering Runs in the Family—and with Neighbors

A chance discussion down the shore led Keirsten Volpe (ME) to her position with HVAC company, Trefz Engineering.

If you’re from Philly, you’ve undoubtedly been “down the shore.” For many, it’s an annual rite of passage with family and friends. For Keirsten Volpe, about to graduate with her BS in Mechanical Engineering, it also helped to propel her to a career in HVAC work. 

“Our neighbor down the shore is the VP of Driscoll (Construction Company) and my new company does a lot of consulting work for them, so that made the connection,” Volpe said. “I’ve interned there, and they just offered me a full-time position after graduation.”

Even though her father has an engineering background, she noted that he was cautious in over-promoting the field. 

“He’s an aerospace engineer, but he didn’t want to push me into it. He wanted me to do what I wanted,” she said. 

After starting at Montgomery County Community College Volpe tried a few majors on for size, such as dental hygiene. 

“Mostly because I had braces at the time, but they also make good money,” she laughed. 

She then explored engineering, and after talking with faculty, found the right fit and came to Temple with her Associate’s. 

“The combination of school, labs and work is different than I was anticipating. It’s more hands-on. I learned the skills to problem solve and work through projects, like Senior Design,” she said. 

Now, she’ll take those skills to Trefz Engineering, where she’ll be supporting HVAC systems for major universities, including Temple. 

“There’s an engineering side and consulting side,” she said. “I’ll be on the engineering side, doing air system sizing, designing and CAD work.” 

And though she’s leaving Temple for a career, there will always be that next trip down the shore. 

Follow our full Next Stop series to see where some of this semester’s graduating seniors are headed.