Alumnus Michael Neeely sat down with us to talk about career shifts and his retirement in our latest Alumni Profile.
Mason Degree: BS, Chemistry 1976
Occupation: Retired Analytical Support Group manager at CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company
My favorite Mason memory is…being fortunate enough to have Dr. Robert F. Cozzens as my college mentor and having the opportunity to support his research at the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) while I was attending Mason.
Professionally, I’m most proud because…before I retired, I was part of a multi-disciplinary team at Hanford, whose mission is to characterize and clean up one of the most contaminated (both chemically and radiologically) sites in our nation. The Hanford team is developing and deploying state of the art pump and treat (P&T) technologies for remediating contaminated ground water, and then re-injecting the clean water back into the aquifer. This cleanup project is still ongoing; however, when the cleanup is complete, and the Hanford site is restored to its original pristine condition, I will be proud to say that I was part of the team that achieved that remarkable accomplishment.
I advise current students to…maintain contact with fellow students and faculty. I can’t stress it enough – network, network, network! It will be instrumental in a career pursuit.
An interesting fact about me is that…I was an avid runner, running in marathons (26.2 miles) and ultra-marathons (50 miles). However, in 2011, I had surgery on my cervical spine and my lumbar spine, and the doctor advised me not to run again. So, I now walk for approximately 15 miles every day. I use my walking time for my prayer and meditation time.
The extended COS interview with Michael Neely: