AEG annual visiting professionals career day connects students with geoscientists

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The AEG (Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists) Annual Visiting Professionals Career Day took place last Thursday afternoon from 4-6 pm in McEniry 125.  Four practicing geoscientists presented, representing a variety of career paths and positions.  Three of the presenters were alumni of our department – one very recently!  About twenty students were in attendance enjoying pizza, cookies, and beverages provided by AEG and the GEO Club.  Rick Kolb from AEG arranged the event and provided some introductory remarks about the AEG organization and how it serves students, then each presenter introduced themselves briefly, before breaking out into disciplinary tables where students could ask individual questions and interact one-on-one.  It was a great success and the job and internship opportunities seemed strong!  Students stayed and chatted until after 6pm.  Thanks to AEG and GEO for putting on this event and we look forward to the next one in the Spring of 2025!

Below are bios of the presenters:

William Flinchum, P.G., R.S.M.
Matt is a UNC Charlotte alumnus and currently owns and operates a small environmental consulting firm called Regional Environmental, PLLC.
His primary role at Regional Environmental is to provide expertise and advice to municipal, industrial, and residential clients by
assessing and mitigating their environmental risk to comply with environmental regulations. Matt earned B.S. degrees in geology and
in earth science from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 2009. After graduating, he began his environmental consulting
career as a staff geologist at Duncklee & Dunham, P.C. He continued working at Duncklee & Dunham for about 11 years, where he
worked as a project geologist, project manager, senior project manager, and eventually the director of assessment and remediation. After
Duncklee & Dunham was acquired by SynTerra in 2020, Matt continued his consulting career at SynTerra as a group leader and project
manager, managing large projects and a team of geologists, engineers, GIS specialists, and environmental scientists until early 2023,
when he started Regional Environmental. During his career, he has been the person in responsible charge for assessment and remediation
projects in North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, and Maryland. His contaminant experience includes, but is not limited
to, per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), heavy metals, chlorinated solvents, manufactured gas plant (MGP) residuals, petroleum,
and agrochemicals.

Beca Deal and Darielle Sheehan
Beca manages the Long-Term Stewardship Program for the City of Charlotte Storm Water Services department. Her primary role is to
develop and manage a program that is responsible for the long-term inspection, maintenance, and repair of stormwater control measures,
closed-out stream-restoration projects, and regulated dams. Beca received her undergraduate degree in Interior Design from
Appalachian State University in 2006 and worked in commercial architecture for three years. In 2009, she returned to school at UNC
Charlotte for undergraduate studies in geology, and followed by earning a Master’s of Earth Science degree. During her time at UNC
Charlotte, she worked in the Water Quality and the Bio-Geochemistry Lab, gaining experience in stormwater and stream
restoration. After graduating with her Master’s degree, Beca worked as a consulting environmental geologist in the private sector for
over 7 years. She started as a Staff Geologist conducting field work and was a Project Geologist managing various delineation and
remediation projects before she moved to Storm Water Services for the City of Charlotte in 2020. The combination of experience through
her various degrees and various careers has provided her with a unique set of skills to develop and manage the Long-Term Stewardship
(L-TS) program for Storm Water Services.

Darielle is an Engineering Assistant for the L-TS Program for the City of Charlotte Storm Water Services department. Her primary role
is inspecting municipal Stormwater Control Measures (SCMs). Her other responsibilities include work on the dam-safety team, checking
on the progress of the program’s maintenance and restorative work, and general L-TS program support. Darielle received her
undergraduate degree in Earth and Environmental Science from UNC Charlotte in 2022. She started working for the city after she
graduated and has learned a lot in her first year in this role.

Melissa Magno, P.G.
Melissa works in the Geotechnical Department at Colliers Engineering & Design (CED) in Charlotte. Her primary role as a geologist is
providing geotechnical engineering consulting services for a wide range of projects including retail, residential, telecommunications,
utilities, solar, and institutional facilities. Melissa earned her B.S. in Geology, with a minor in Geographic Information Systems (GIS),
from East Tennessee State University in 2018. From 2018 to 2019, she worked at ECS, primarily as a construction-materials testing
technician, testing soil, concrete, and asphalt on construction sites. Since Fall of 2019, Melissa has worked with CED as a field geologist
performing infiltration and bearing-capacity testing, and visually classifying soil and rock samples in the field. In 2023, Melissa was
promoted to Assistant Project Manager and began her transition to primarily an office position, where she has gained extensive
experience in the planning and supervision of geotechnical field explorations and laboratory-testing programs to evaluate subsurface
conditions and provide foundation-design recommendations.

About AEG
The Carolinas Chapter of AEG ( is part of AEG, a national organization ( that has chapters
throughout the United States. AEG’s annual meeting was in Portland, Oregon last year and will be in Philadelphia this year. As incentives
for geology students in the Carolinas to interact with practicing geologists and learn about the practical application of your geology
degree, AEG offers free membership for students and our chapter offers free dinners at our quarterly dinner meetings in Charlotte,
Raleigh, Asheville and Greensboro. Our chapter awards the annual Carolinas Scholarship to a geology major or grad student in the
Carolinas ($3,000 last year). The AEG Foundation also offers many other scholarships to college students.