M A S T E R S SU CCESS STORIES Career profiles of the University of Plymouth’s Masters students - Civil & Coastal Engineering web www.plymouth.ac.uk TELEPHONE +44(0)1752 586000 EMAIL [email protected] Ben Harries MSc Civil & Structural Engineering Graduate Structural Engineer Hyder Consulting I joined the University of Plymouth to study an HND in Civil Engineering and left five years later with a BEng in Civil Engineering and an MSc in Civil and Structural Engineering. I chose Plymouth because I was looking for a complete change and it had a lot to offer: excellent facilities for experiments and investigations and everything a student needs within walking distance, with Dartmoor and the many amazing beaches and countryside nearby. After my MSc I joined Hyder Consulting as a Graduate Structural Engineer. My job involves almost all aspects of engineering, from running small projects to designing steel frame buildings and designing concrete civil works for the water team. I have worked as the project structural engineer for three buildings for Cornwall College as well as on the renovation of the Atlantic Club at the St Mawgan Airbase in Cornwall. This involved carrying out an investigation into the stability of the existing structure and redesigning the internal structures to allow for a new open plan building. For my year’s site experience I was seconded to Cowlin Construction to work on the £31 million James Square Development at the University of Plymouth. This incorporates the construction of a six storey concrete academic building, an eight storey precast residential building and the refurbishment of an existing eleven storey building. I worked in various roles as Site Engineer, Quantity Surveyor, Finishing Foreman and Design Coordinator in order to gain valuable experience in areas such as buildability, quality and value. The MSc allowed me to concentrate within a particular area and delve deeper into aspects of engineering. It also gave me a greater understanding of the more technical aspects which has allowed me to work on parts of a project I wouldn’t normally be able to work on until later in my career. “My MSc has meant I get to work on parts of a project I wouldn’t normally be able to work on until later in my career” More profiles inside, including: From airports to high rise luxury Flood defences Award winner Big dreams Mike Taylor and his multi-million pound Gibraltar projects Siu Fa Ng helping to safeguard millions of lives Adam Leonard-Williams at the forefront of ocean modelling Fotini Ntousikou securing her future in Greece Page 2 Page 3 Page 3 Page 4 Project looking at the temperatures and surface currents in the Gulf of Mexico and the Gulf Stream Mike Taylor Adam Leonard-Williams MSc Construction Management MSc Flood Risk Quantity Surveyor Product and Service Scientist Daniel Barton Surveyors, Gibraltar National Centre of Ocean Forecasting, Met Office I already had a degree in Oceanography but I was keen to learn new skills and gain experience in flood risk and coastal engineering with a view to moving into a career in a new area with employers such as the Environment Agency or engineering consultants. I chose the University of Plymouth because it offered a unique course in a department with an excellent reputation. Additionally, there was the chance of meeting potential employers in the South West. As a Quantity Surveyor in Gibraltar I have been working on some very big projects. They include the relocation of the RAF base at Gibraltar Airport and construction of a new multi million pound Gibraltar International Airport Terminal as well as a new ocean village comprising three high rise luxury waterfront apartment blocks, townhouses, shops, restaurants, offices and casino built on reclaimed land in Gibraltar’s Marina Bay. Thanks to my MSc I am now working with the best oceanographic institutes in the country and involved in the forefront of ocean modelling and forecasting. Additionally, working at the Met Office means an exposure to the current science and research in atmospheric sciences and climate change. This involves studying the temperature of the sea surface in the Gulf of Mexico which can be used to monitor strong currents and eddies which have a significant impact on engineering and hurricanes. I feel the MSc prepared me well for my chosen career. It helped me improve my organisational ability and to develop an awareness of the management of construction projects and the issues which arise in modern construction. One major plus point of the MSc is the fact that the topic of sustainable construction is well covered and integrated into each module, looking at the management of construction projects from the environmental point of view. I feel this will prove invaluable during my career as this seems to be the future for the construction industry. I was also impressed by the fact that the MSc was joint RICS/CIOB accredited. “The topic of sustainable construction is well covered and integrated into each My dissertation enabled me to do a project linked with the Hadley Centre, which is part of the Met Office. It involved using sea level rise projections from the Hadley Centre to model the extent of coastal flooding from extreme storm surges that would occur at Herne Bay, Kent by the end of the 21st century. I think this helped a great deal as it allowed me to get to know people within the department before applying for the job. I also won the Faculty Medal for Outstanding Performance on the MSc course. module & I feel this will prove is well covered and integrated “The topic of sustainable construction invaluable my will career ” invaluable during my career” into each module &during I feel this prove Bonita Rickard BEng (Hons) Civil & Coastal Engineering & MSc Coastal Engineering Graduated 2006 Graduate Engineer, Hyder Consulting After 16 years working as an Administrator I was looking for a career change. After successfully completing the Foundation Pathways in Technology course I was able to progress onto the BEng (Hons) Civil & Coastal Engineering degree and then decided to continue my studies on the MSc in Coastal Engineering in order to specialise within this field. These degrees are widely respected within the engineering community and this has allowed me to secure a good job as a coastal engineer. Since graduating from the MSc in Coastal Engineering I have been working in the Plymouth office of Hyder Consulting (with whom I spent my undergraduate placement year) as a Graduate Engineer. My work has included assisting with the project management of the design checks for a tender submission for a port redevelopment in Scotland, proposals for a hydro-electric power scheme - which has included the investigation of alternative methods of excavating the bed material from an existing tidal reservoir - and a study to determine the viability of a cross-Forth Passenger ferry service, to relieve some of the congestion on the Forth Road Bridge. “The BEng (Hons) Civil & Coastal Engineering degree at the University of Plymouth is widely respected within the engineering community” Escalator Chamber “It is very rewarding to know that I am working towards protecting millions of businesses, homes and lives” Siu Fa Ng MSc Flood Risk Asset System Management Environment Agency I first became interested in managing flood risk while doing my BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering degree at the University of Plymouth. During the course I spent some time working as a placement student at the Environment Agency. My work included preparing flood risk and asset inspection reports on the Grand Union Canal and surveying low spot areas in risk of flooding around the Midlands. So, when I heard about the MSc Flood Risk I thought it was the perfect opportunity to help me Maryam Rafaty MSc Civil Engineering Management Assistant Civil Engineer, Scott Wilson pursue a career in flood risk management, especially as the course is accredited. Since graduating a few months ago I have been working in an Asset System Management team with the Environment Agency. I am currently involved in improving and updating flood defence information on the Environment Agency’s National Flood and Coastal Defence Database. This information is used to decide whether it is worth building a new flood defence or investing in maintaining the current defences. Flood risk is a hot topic, not only in the UK, but also worldwide due to rising sea water levels and unpredictable global weather. Not many people know that six inches of rapidly moving flood water can easily knock a person down. It is very rewarding to know that I am working towards protecting millions of businesses, homes and lives. Having completed a BSc in Civil Engineering in Iran I was eager to improve my managerial skills and knowledge of civil engineering projects. I knew I would be able to enhance my technical skills throughout my career while an MSc could help me to develop a holistic view of the construction industry. The University of Plymouth offered just what I was looking for and my experience on the course, and at the University, was very rewarding. As a member of the structures team at Scott Wilson I am responsible for providing design calculation for a variety of civil engineering projects (railway, infrastructure, residential buildings etc). Recently I have been working on the London Underground, for example, renewing the structure of an escalator chamber in one of the stations. I have also been working on signal post structures in the southwest of the country for Network Rail. I have long been keen to pursue a career in the railway industry, particularly bridges, and I love what I do. The range of projects is really wide and every new project offers a lot of opportunities. I am keen to develop my career further and specialise in project management. Fotini Ntousikou MSc Civil Engineering Project Management, Greece From the beginning of my Civil Engineering studies, my dream was to have my own company. Thanks to my time at the University of Plymouth that dream is starting to become a reality. During my foundation year in Greece I decided to continue my studies in the UK. I chose Plymouth as it is recognised in Greece as one of the 10 best universities in the UK, especially the Civil Engineering department. My MSc project was an investigation into the fire protection of steel frame buildings. At the moment there are only a few steel frame buildings in Greece as engineers there currently prefer concrete, but I think, as the advantages of steel frames for multi-storey and office buildings become more widely known, this will soon change. As there are only a few engineers in Greece who have studied the fire protection of steel frames I feel my MSc will put me in great demand. After my masters I returned to Greece and found a job in an architectural and construction company in Athens. My work involves studies, computer programs, 3-D images models, detailed construction studies, financial analysis and timetabling for various projects around Greece and the Greek Islands. I am also visiting the construction sites for supervision, which is exciting and this is where I am learning the most. “My projects include the study and construction of many mansions and luxurious residences in Athens and on the Greek Islands” My projects have included the study and construction of a two storey office building with 5 basements for parking and the study and construction of many mansions and luxurious residences including a two storey mansion with basement, inside and outside swimming pools and a tennis court on the island of Corfu. Apart from the work in the office, I have joined together with three friends - an architect, a civil engineer and a mechanical engineer – to take over our own jobs and do our own studies in the hope of starting our own company. University of Plymouth, Drake Circus, Plymouth, Devon, UK, PL4 8AA FAX +44(0)1752 586003 Earthquake Engineering Module Coastal Engineering Research From 2008 the MSc Civil Engineering course offers Civil Engineers a new option to study the Design of Earthquake Resistant Structures. Earthquake activity is a major consideration in the design of many structures around the world. Although we do not experience severe earthquakes in the UK, Engineers are involved designing structures that resist earthquake loads for clients around the world. The Coastal Engineering Research Group (CERG) is a leading team of coastal engineering researchers here at the University of Plymouth. CERG is focused firmly on major problems facing society regarding rising sea levels, flood risk and offshore renewable energy which have been highlighted in recent Government reviews. These include a DEFRA report estimating that 4 - 5 million people could be affected by flood and coastal erosion. This module was designed based on requests and advice from practicing engineering firms and from members of our Civil Engineering Industrial Advisory Committee. This is a unique module covering practical aspects of Earthquake Engineering using Eurocode 8 requirements. Topics covered include a general introduction to dynamics, earthquake responses, soil structure interaction, practical analytical analysis of real structures using real earthquake data and design of structural elements to resist earthquake loads.
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