Meet Chelcie Babin from Houston, Texas. Chelcie has a degree in Civil Engineering from Texas Tech University and currently works as a subsea engineer and package manager, where she manages multiple fabrication scopes for projects all over the world. She has fabricated everything from flanges, to pipeline coatings and subsea structures. Once fabrication is complete, she assists with mobilizing the equipment on vessels and offshore installations.
Chelcie has predominantly worked in the Gulf of Mexico, but also, in Venezuela, Italy, and Norway. We reached out to her to learn more about what her career has been like managing and installing structures under the sea:
Chelcie, what inspired you to work on the water?
“I grew up a navy brat, so the water has always been both exciting and calming. I love waking up on the water to a beautiful sunrise. The ocean has a way of putting everything into perspective.”
Please share a sea story with a lesson learned or a memorable experience you’ve had at sea.
“I have seen some amazing things offshore. My first trip on the water, I was a little nervous but I made the most of it. We were decommissioning platforms in the Gulf of Mexico and had the opportunity to take a ride in the chopper, along with the environmental engineers, to check for any wildlife in the area. We had only been in the air about 10 minutes and saw many fish, dolphins and sea turtles. As we were heading back to the vessel, we looked off in the distance and saw a giant whale shark on the water’s surface. The size and beauty of this animal was absolutely incredible. It was something I’ll never forget!”
What motivates you to continue working on the water if it’s a long-term career for you?
“I truly love my job, especially, being on the water. It’s the best of both worlds for me. I’m lucky enough to work in the office, construction sites, offshore and even travel the world. My day-to-day is never the same which keeps me motivated, and there isn’t much repetition, which I found in my earlier jobs as a civil engineer.”
What challenges have you faced in your career?
“There are always challenges offshore. I faced a lot of adversity with the industry being so male-dominated. It can be difficult at times but I persisted and learned from all the challenges I faced.”
What do you think can be done in your industry to encourage more women to pursue similar careers?
“I think sites like this can be very helpful and encouraging. I know when I started, I was unsure and a little intimidated by how male-dominated the offshore industry could be. In college, I also volunteered for this group called Women in Science Endeavors (WISE) and it was focused on getting younger girls into science and math careers. We mentored girls ranging from 4th grade to seniors in high school. It was an excellent way to get them excited about learning, as well as introducing them into fields they might not have thought of or knew about.”
Thank you, Chelcie, for sharing a piece of your world with our readership! We wish you all the best in your career!
The Women Offshore Foundation is an online organization and resource center for a diverse workforce on the water. Its mission is to propel women into meaningful careers through access to a worldwide community and professional development resources, while raising awareness amongst industry leaders and decision makers about issues affecting women on the water. Contact Women Offshore today: firstname.lastname@example.org.