Feldman: Investing in Local, Diverse Talent

From the moment we moved into our new location at 152 Hampden Street, it was our objective to invest in local, diverse talent here in Roxbury and Dorchester. As Michael Feldman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Feldman, explains, “When I first looked out my window at Orchard Gardens, I immediately envisioned a way to engage local talent so that people could start a great career in their own neighborhood and literally walk across the street to come to work.” Two years later, we’re well on our way to making that vision a reality.

Training Promising Talent In-House

After we moved in and got settled, we reached out to Madison Park Development Corporation to help us find two summer interns: Adobe from West Roxbury and Dana Bowman from Dorchester. Adobe performed administrative duties in our offices, while Dana worked on our field crew. When Dana returned for a week over Christmas, he proudly showed us the car he bought with his summer earnings.

In 2017, we also reached out to Madison Park Vocational High School to see if they knew of any high school graduates in need of work. We were fortunate to find a new team member: Sam Oquendo from Dorchester.  And in 2018, we reached out to our friends at the Orchard Gardens Resident Association and found Francisco Rosario from Roxbury. Although neither possessed any surveying experience, we brought them in and put them through our in-house training program. Now, they’re both operating as survey field crew members on high-profile sites throughout Boston — and interestingly, Francisco lives right across the street from our offices and walks to work every morning.

Michael so glad he was a good fit and thanks for reaching out to our Orchard Youth! Please keep me updated on how he is doing. Thanks you so much for giving our youth a chance to succeed!!!!!!

– Val Shelley, President – Orchard Gardens Resident Association

This so GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This a prime example on how a community can work together for success. Thank you Michael Feldman and All for coordinating this.

– Sharon Russell-Mack, Community Manager, Orchard Gardens Estates

Women@Wentworth

At Feldman, we’re dedicated to promoting gender equality and diversity in our field. For this reason, we work closely with the co-op program from the Wentworth Institute of Technology in Roxbury to offer positions to female engineers. To date, we’ve welcomed six talented professionals to our team: Brooke, Alexis, Nicole, Liz, Kawtar— who’s originally from Morocco — and Pegah, who’s originally from Iran.

“Working at Feldman was an invaluable experience. I learned an incredible amount for the time I worked there. I really enjoyed the hands-on experience and how each day brought about something new. I was able to learn how to survey conventionally as well as laser scanning. Feldman really values their employees and it’s evident by how friendly and respectful everyone is.”

– Nicole Barbagallo, Civil Engineering 2020

Outreach to Young Talent

In addition, this past summer, we invited four youngsters from Orchard Gardens Boys & Girls Club of Boston — all between the ages of 10 and 12 — to our offices. When we gave them a tour of the facility, they were amazed at the modern interior, since they’d expected a more traditional look to match the building’s exterior. To give our guests a taste of what land surveying is all about, we showed them pictures of our projects and talked about the technology we use. Afterwards, they asked a lot of insightful questions — including what happens if someone arrives late for work!

Giving Back to Our Community

While investing in local talent is in large part about offering young people with the right aptitude the opportunity to pursue a career in land surveying, it’s also about giving back to the community we serve. Because when young people understand that they can be a part of something meaningful right here in their own neighborhood, they begin to take deep pride in their community. And in the long run, this pride is critical to this wonderful neighborhood’s further development and advancement.