- Course: Civil Engineering with Construction Management (International) MEng
- Nationality: British
- Job title: Civil Engineer
- Company: Jacobs
- Location of year abroad: National University of Singapore
What have you been doing since finishing your studies? What are you doing in terms of your career?
Since I graduated from Leeds, I have worked for Jacobs, a large engineering consultancy undertaking a variety of roles on a number of flagship projects, which has seen me travel all over the UK and now to Australia.
Did you do a BEng or MEng? Please can you explain why you chose that particular option
I originally chose to undertake an MEng as it meant that I could gain ICE chartership as quickly as possible. The 4th year also helped me to gain a lot more practical knowledge and skills which made me a lot more confident when starting work.
What company are you working for, what is your role and what does it involve?
I found my job with Jacobs straight after graduation through the University's Career Centre. I spent my first year as a graduate Civil Engineer based in Leeds working on Highway, Earthworks and Drainage designs for a variety of projects including stadia, commercial developments and mining projects.
I had a brief spell in the company's Manchester office before being sent to work on the major renovation of Birmingham New Street Station. I had a practical site based role as Engineering Manager for Civil and Structural Surveys. I managed a large team of site engineers and various sub-contractors and was responsible for planning, executing and delivering works including managing resources, safety & quality.
I was then moved back into the office down in London for a year undertaking civil design work for the Crossrail project - a new train link that will run straight through the centre of London and is Europe's largest construction project.
I am now based in Sydney, Australia working on both the design & construction of various infrastructure projects which include highway, tunnelling and bridge works. I am aiming to gain Chartership with the ICE within the next year or so.
Looking back, why did you choose to study your particular course and why did you choose the University of Leeds?
I first considered Leeds because I had been told about their good reputation for Civil Engineering. My mind was made up when I attended the open day as I really loved the buzz of the city, the facilities available on campus and the pubs in Headingley!
What was the best aspect of the course/the University and why? Any highlights?
The best aspect of the course for me was that it covered a vast range of subjects from detailed structural design to construction law. The variation in the modules allows for a wide range of potential career options within the engineering/construction industry. The main highlight was, without a doubt, the year I spent abroad at the National University of Singapore. It was a really good chance to broaden my horizons, gain new experiences and travel the world!
What other activities outside of your studies were you involved in?
I decided to join the University's lacrosse team as I enjoyed playing sport and wanted to try something new. I ended up playing all the way through University and it became as much of a social activity as a physical one, with tours to Spain & Dublin being particular highlights! Even if sport isn't your thing there are loads of other societies or organisations run by the university to get involved in.
What would you say to students thinking about studying the same course at Leeds/thinking about the same career?
Be prepared to work hard and play hard! You certainly get your money's worth in terms of contact hours but you will still have plenty of time to enjoy all of what Leeds has to offer. In terms of your career, my advice would be to complete your course and then make your mind up. If it turns out to not be your thing then you can easily pursue a different career with the all the transferable skills that you gain!