Michelle McGrath
Director, Global Engineering

Why did you join Air Products?
The Career Development Program for new graduates was the differentiator. It provided me the ability to be exposed to careers that I did not even know existed. The insight I gained from the rotational program enabled me to land in a job that I loved.

Why do you love working at Air Products? What is it that keeps you working at Air Products?
I love the people and the challenging work. I am surrounded by intelligent, collaborative, and hardworking people, and I go home at the end of the day with a feeling that I have made a difference. The opportunity to be continually challenged and rewarded for the work that I do. As a 30-year employee, I also enjoy mentoring others and watching them succeed in their careers.

Please describe your career at Air Products to date. 
I started as a process engineer on the Career Development Program. On my second rotation, I learned that I loved Project Engineering and spent six years executing air separation plant projects in the US, Mexico, Indonesia and Malaysia. Seeing a project develop from a blank sheet of paper and a green field to a fully operational plant was very rewarding to me.

After the six years, I moved from Engineering to Operations, where I had responsibility for the operation of our North American air separation plants and for the distribution of product. In addition, I was the Operations liaison for our joint venture partners in Mexico and South America, where I was able to put my Spanish-speaking skills to frequent use. My last position in Operations was as the Global Process Engineering Manager, responsible for the engineers who worked on plant efficiency and productivity projects in our plants around the world. I am currently back in the Engineering organization, where I manage a team of engineers and designers who bid, design, build and start up new air separation plants in the Americas region. 

Tell me about the most intriguing/satisfying thing(s) you’ve been involved in since you’ve been at Air Products.
I have travelled the world, worked with many different people and cultures and have been exposed to some of the most interesting and intelligent people I know.

What career advice would you give to those just starting out in their engineering careers?
Engineering offers so many opportunities. If you do not love what you do in your first job, try something new; do not be afraid to work outside of your comfort zone. That is when you will learn the most. Just as important; work hard. You really only have one opportunity to make a first impression. Make it a good one!

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