Did you have any role models when you were younger? What inspired you to do the job you’re doing now?
I used to binge watch ‘How it’s made’ when I was off sick from school. I always found the manufacturing processes of random every day objects fascinating. The role model that played the biggest part in getting me to where I am today is my grandma; who instilled in me from a young age that girls can do anything they want to do, and if you really want something then you ‘go out and get it done girl!’
Any influential toys during childhood?
Scooby-doos, Lego, Marble run and Polly pockets.
Your favourite subjects at school?
Physics (although I didn’t admit it to anyone else at the time), Design Technology and Textiles.
For A-level I did Design technology: Product design, Physics, Art and design: Textiles and Maths. I then did a degree in Industrial Design and Technology BA. And now I am back at college completing an HNQ in Engineering alongside my day job. The great thing about an apprenticeship scheme is that you can come into it from any point in your education journey; we have people that joined straight out of school having just done their GCSE’s.
Your reason for choosing this career?
When I left school I couldn’t decide between art and science as I enjoyed them both equally. Through research online I discovered product design and design engineering which incorporated both into one profession, perfect!
Tell me about your career path to date?
I studied Industrial Design and Technology at Loughborough University where I decided to take a year in industry in my third year. I went to work for Avon Protection as a design engineer, designing gas masks for the military, firefighters and police. After finishing my final year of university I found a summer job working for Qioptiq who design and manufacture weapon sights and night vision goggles for the military. Working there as a design engineer was so interesting and I learned a huge amount, however at the end of the summer I decided that I needed to move closer to home. So I found a job in London working for TfL as a railway signalling design engineer.
If you could have any job what would it be? How does it differ from what you’re doing?
Design engineering is my absolute dream job but I do enjoy performing musicals in my local drama group, so maybe an actor in the West End!
Your advice to a young person considering a career in STEM?
Try it! Get a work experience placement in an engineering company; get them to show how the whole process works from concept design through to manufacture and commissioning. There is such a huge range of job roles within engineering, I would recommend getting out there and giving some a go. You never know till you try!