What’s the most unexpected thing about your job?
The travel opportunities and freedom to own my own career path.
Did you have any role models when you were younger? What inspired you to do the job you’re doing now?
My grandad was a huge role model for me and had a joinery company which included a woodwork workshop with many machines. Although I was only very young when he ran this business, I have distinct memories of being in that mechanical environment with the machinery and loving it. I believe this young exposure led me towards the engineering industry.
Any influential toys during childhood?
Lego and K’nex.
Your favourite subjects at school?
Maths and Graphic Design.
Left school after GCSEs to start a Mechanical Engineering Apprenticeship. Have since gained NC, HNC and Degree with Honours in Mechanical Engineering. I also completed a Project Management qualification.
Your reason for choosing this career?
I applied for an apprenticeship as advised by a family friend however at that point I wasn’t sure if engineering was the industry I wanted to be within due to the stigma attached. My main reasons for applying was due to a keen interest in maths and design. Initially I anticipated following a career path of becoming a designer however, the apprenticeship gave me exposure to several parts of engineering and my interest was captured by gas turbine performance.
Tell me about your career path to date?
Three year apprenticeship, studied part time for National Certificate in Mechanical Engineering, followed by Higher National Certificate and then Bachelors Degree with Honours in Mechanical Engineering. First substantive role following apprenticeship was as a Performance Engineer, followed by Equipment Health Monitoring Engineer, then moving on to becoming Engineering Programme Manager for the remote monitoring of gas turbines worldwide for my business sector.
If you could have any job what would it be? How does it differ from what you’re doing?
I have always dreamed of becoming a Formula 1 Performance Engineer, this is because I love the sport, cars and it takes my knowledge of engine performance. This role would be very different to that which I currently do as it is within the Motorsport industry rather than Gas and Power however, the key principles of engine performance are still applicable and therefore I have very transferrable skills.
Your advice to a young person considering a career in STEM?
Forget the stigma as the world is changing. Ensure that you follow a career path that you are passionate about, this is usually driven from the love of one particular subject. And no matter what, always remember that any decision is not forever and you are always free to change your mind.