Civil Engineers are creative problem solvers. They turn ideas into amazing things for people to use.
Story of a real Civil Engineer
Why did you decide to join Mott MacDonald?
I joined Mott MacDonald as part of the Institution of Civil Engineer’s Queen’s Jubilee Trust Scholarship (QUEST) programme.
After a daunting round of application forms and a 500 word essay, I got invited to a series of interviews in One Great George Street. After having just been through the stress of learning my A-Level results, getting accepted to university and making arrangements to attend, I had to attend an entire day of interviews from some of the biggest (and smallest) names in the Civil Engineering world.
After spending the morning wondering if I’d made the right choice, I sat down in front of two people from Mott’s that instantly made me feel relaxed and welcoming. They told me about the projects that were being worked on, the opportunities I could have and also the ability I would have to shape my career the way I wanted it.
All of that seemed to stand out by more than a mile from the other companies that I had been talking to and my mind was made up. I have to say that this has remained true for the 8 years that I have now worked with Mott MacDonald.
What is the best thing about your role?
As an engineer working in the bridges team, I am in one of the most demanding and creative sectors of the Civil Engineering world (in my opinion of course). I am constantly working with like-minded individuals to solve some fairly complex geometrical problems with constraints being imposed at all angles and we still manage to make it work.
Also, as I spend my days designing structures that have a design life of 120+ years, I’ll be in a unique position in the future to tell my children and my children’s children that “I design that” or “I built that” – you’ll struggle to find another job that gives you opportunity to do that!
How would you describe the culture of Mott MacDonald?
Mott MacDonald promotes a diverse culture of collaboration, hard work and support for its staff. Whether you need support during a project (at any level) or progressing your career to chartership and beyond, there is a support network available (including your own team). There is very much a sense of “there’s no I in team, but there is in ‘me’.”
How would you describe your role and responsibilities to friends and family?
I usually start by explaining that I attempt to control the chaos of indecisiveness to produce a design that works. This usually means I end up stating that I essentially create ikea style instructions to build structures on a massive scale. (I knew years of playing with Lego would pay-off somewhere!).
When you’re not in the office where can you be found?
When I’m not in the office, you’re most likely to find me at one of the colleges or high schools around Greater Manchester trying to enthuse the next generation of engineers. If I’m not there, you’ll find me helping to run the local branch of the Institution of Civil Engineers (Manchester Branch, where I have just finished my role as the Chair for the last two years), and more recently, I’m involved with the International Association for Bridge and Structural Engineering helping to set up the first “Future of Design Conference” outside of London.
And when I’m not doing all of that, I’ll be at home sorting out buying a house and making plans.
What is a random fact about you?
I occasionally like to shoot at the local shooting range (nothing too sinister – just a recurve bow and a 27” arrow).