Yanetli Navarro-Hernandez is a 2023 graduate of California State University-Chico who now works in the precast concrete industry. At Chico State, she took part in the Concrete Industry Management program, which is supported by NPCA and the NPCA Foundation.
Navarro-Hernandez was a member of the Chico State team that won the 2022 NPCA Foundation Student Design Competition at The Precast Show® in Kansas City.
She recently spoke with Chico State CIM about her experiences and plans for a future in the industry.
What is your job title, and what do you do day to day?
I’m the quality control manager at Willis Construction Co., overseeing architectural GFRC (specialized concrete) and precast panel projects. My responsibilities include inspections, managing QC staff and standardizing procedures for U.S. and Mexico plants. My tasks encompass concrete mix design, testing, technician supervision, inspections and documentation control.
What inspired you to pursue your career path?
What inspired me to pursue my career path is pushing myself outside of the standard norms and working on projects that no one even imagined existed. Similar to the CIM program, not many people know about GFRC. I think it is fun to expose those people to new career pathways and show them this amazing industry.
Could you share how a concrete industry management education has helped you in the industry?
My CIM education has greatly helped me gain lots of knowledge and respect in the industry. I have used my CIM education daily – from the technical side in the lab to the management side in supervising QC inspectors and technicians.
What skills or knowledge are especially important in your role in the concrete industry?
Both CIM program certifications (OSHA 30 and ACI Field Technician Grade Level 1) are vital for my role. They enable me to train QC technicians in safe procedures and testing methods. My current responsibilities benefit from technical knowledge in hot and cold weather concrete work, concrete repairs, finishing techniques and ASTM procedures. Essential management skills CIM provided include time management, communication, documentation maintenance and overall organization.
Looking ahead, what do you see as the most exciting opportunities or challenges in your career?
I am most excited to get certifications and go to The Precast Sow conventions to broaden my knowledge of the precast industry. I feel that learning as much as I can about this industry and be as involved as much as possible will help me grow in my position and career. Some certifications I am work on are getting my PCI Quality Control Technician/Inspector Level 1, 2 and 3 as well as the AWS Certified Welding Inspector certification.