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Engineer, Coach and Mercy Grad

May 10, 2017
By Deb Daley

An environmental engineer, a basketball coach and a Mercy graduate—are all elements of the interesting and unique resume of Nicole Lenczowski ’06. She currently serves as an Environmental Engineer at Union Pacific Railroad (UP). There she is working toward eliminating water well systems on UP property, which includes connecting yards and facilities to public/city water, with the ultimate goal to reduce the risk of employees and the public from consuming or using potentially contaminated water.

She Learned Her Skills at Mercy

Nicole says that many of the skills she uses everyday in her personal and professional life, she learned at Mercy including leadership, communication, teamwork, collaboration, compassion, and catching on quickly on the job.

"Mercy helped me develop my communication skills through opportunities to be a leader in clubs and activities. Mercy also instilled a sense of compassion in me, as it is not always easy to tell someone that they need to find an alternative source of water, and being able to put yourself in their shoes helps the conversation move in a positive direction. Having recently switched jobs, I have had to be a quick learner, learning both the responsibilities of my position and the complex business of the railroad industry. With its challenges inside and outside the classroom, Mercy helped prepare me to learn skills and lessons quickly and adapt to continuous growth and improvement,” she added.

She has also been part of the Mercy basketball program for almost 18 years; first as a spectator, watching her sister Kristin Lenczowski Roelfs ’03, later as a player, and now as a coach. She is currently the assistant varsity basketball coach.

“ As a professional woman, I want to be a role model for the players. High school sports are so much more than just the game; they provide a unique opportunity for the girls to learn life lessons and develop character skills, including responsibility, respect, leadership, communication, positive attitude, and hard work ethic,” she said.

While at Mercy, Nicole participated in cross-country, basketball, and track and field for all four years. She also was a class officer, a student ambassador, a student athletic trainer, and a member of Pastoral Council. She also loved the traditions at Mercy – Welcome Picnic, Mercy Day, Food Sale, PA, Day of Discovery, May Crowning, Farewell Day – and she is enthralled seeing the current students enjoying those traditions just as much she did.

Traditions have staying power

“I think it’s great to see that even as the world changes and technology evolves, what brings together the generations of Mercy alumnae are the traditions that we all shared and were a part of during our time at Mercy. “ she said.

Following her graduation from Mercy, she attended the University of Nebraska-Omaha. She graduated in May 2010 with a BS in Civil Engineering. During her senior year, she interned at AECOM (formerly URS Corporation), and after graduation, was hired as a full-time employee. At AECOM she was an Environmental Engineer for seven years and worked on several federal projects, traveling to different military installations throughout the country. In October 2016, she passed the Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) exam, becoming a licensed Environmental Engineer in the state of Nebraska. She took on her new job in November 2016.

“ I would tell others that all support and involvement at Mercy is important to Mercy—it all makes a tremendous impact on Mercy and its young women,” she added.

Nicole knows. All levels of her life—personal, professional and her passion for basketball—all were part of her Mercy journey.