2012 graduate Mark Mathis II pursues geotechnical engineering
Since graduating in 2012, Hays High graduate Mark Mathis II has received his bachelor degree and is working on his masters in civil engineering at Kansas State University.
While in high school, Mathis participated in football, track, National Honors Society, and Hays High Industrial Tech Association (HHITA), which encouraged Mathis to pursue a career in engineering.
During the last year of his undergraduate degree, Mathis had the opportunity to work for the city of Manhattan at their waste water treatment plant. He often worked from midnight to 8 a.m. and then would go to classes.
Mathis believes his dedication payed off when he was offered a research assistantship that paid for his graduate work in return for working on research into the process by which soil erodes.
“A geotechnical engineer would essentiality determine the soil strength so that when you build any type of building you have the appropriate foundation designed for it so that the building doesn’t settle or sink into the ground or even fall over,” Mathis said.
Mathis is planning to graduate in May of 2019 and hopes to go into geotechnical engineering but doesn’t know where in the country he will be.
Mathis is getting married in December. His fiancé, Cecilia Rose Wuertz, is currently in medical school and they don’t know yet where she will be doing her residency. They are expecting their first child in January.
Mathis advised students to pay attention to their grades and study habits but most of all to enjoy the time they have in high school.
“I would say to enjoy the time you have now because once you graduate, when you go to college, things will happen a lot faster,” Mathis said. “While you don’t realize it, high school is the time that you have to prepare yourself for the future that you want to have for yourself. The take way message would be to work hard and enjoy high school now because it’s not the end of the world when you graduate high school. There will be plenty more challenges that you’ll face when you get to college or whatever you do.”