My inspiration to become an engineer came about within an interesting journey starting with my move to the United Kingdom straight after getting married to be with my husband. Initially I had been working in the Oil & Gas sector in Calgary, Aberta, Canada for almost 4 years before my move to the UK. Unfortunately, the Petroleum Exploration hub was in Scotland and being new to the UK I decided to stay close to London and found a job with an offshore geotechnical engineering company called Fugro. I gained experience in drafting using AutoCAD and began working with both geotechnical and civil engineers. I noted that engineering was technically challenging and exactly what I found highly satisfying.
The next company I worked for I gained further exposure to working with civil engineering and with their sponsorship I began my formal foray into civil engineering by enrolling into Civil Engineering HNC programme. I completed this programme with distinction and knew that it was what I was meant to be doing as I find it to be a most rewarding career where I am part of a professional community whose high standards contribute immensely to the public, has recognisably great history and also so much potential for the future.
Currently I am employed with Waterman Aspen and is one of the best companies I have worked for. They have provided me with the means to progress my engineering career further than I had ever thought to achieve. With Waterman Aspen I have been able to secure a prominent role in the Highways Adoptions team in Bracknell Forest Council.
A significant professional achievement of attaining my EngTech qualification of my career has been facilitated by Waterman Aspen. This achievement has provided me with confidence and attained praise and recognition of my secondment employers and fellow colleagues. It was something I have wanted to do for a few years and it finally happened in Feb 2017.
By attaining my professional registration, Waterman Aspen, has recognised this achievement and commended initiative to progress with my career. My efforts in advancing with further professional qualifications and attaining career milestones has been enthusiastically encouraged. I have been mentioned in the company newsletter when I attained my EngTech qualification and have been approached by the CIHT to become involved in their Engineering Professional Standards Panel (EPSP). I have also been approached by the Engineering Council to partake in their case study on the Council’s website last August 2018.
My career aspirations and continued professional development has been highly encouraged by Waterman Aspen. They have been positive with their encouragement, approval and allowance for me to attend every event that would promote my learning in relation to my aspiration to be a Suds Drainage Engineer and taking on a more involved role with CIHT.
Engineering is a professional career that most young women don’t always think of when deciding their vocational path, this a great missed opportunity for many girls, young adults and even those women contemplating a late career change. STEM is a great start to reach the young, curious minded and multi-talented school age girls before they start their ascent to colleges and universities. In my case I didn’t come across any role models in school but later on in my work life when I witnessed first-hand how Women Engineers were accepted and played critical roles in the engineering companies I worked for. I took my experiences from my technical background and entered the role of a Civil Engineer based on the strong influences of these women and encouraged by forward thinking and supportive men colleagues. If young women can be encouraged to follow a path that is supported and feel welcomed to join into an Institution of historical reverence, then the statistical rise of women can grow and catch up to the men.
Equal opportunities in hiring Women Engineers, recognising their achievements and progression of their careers will be the hallmark of a good company to work for, and I have been most fortunate to have such an employer in Waterman Aspen.