I couldn’t have asked for more
The support I received from the project director, the project manager for the diaphragm wall work, and the rest of the team throughout my first few weeks was amazing. They were willing to teach me everything and were there with me every step of the way. I felt incredibly grateful that they’d given me this opportunity and seen potential in me – I couldn’t have asked for a better experience.
My training has been so varied since I started; my role has involved quality assurance, preparation of grout mixes and ensuring our material and equipment conforms to the necessary specifications. I’ve also been involved in the delivery of piles, plunge columns and diaphragm walls. In addition to that, I’ve had the responsibility of liaising with our client, Balfour Beatty VINCI SYSTRA (BBVS).
In one way, I’ve been thrown in at the deep end as I was new to many of the works being carried out at HS2; however, I think having an academic background in engineering definitely helped as it allowed me to develop at a faster pace and better understand what was going on.
Once our first phase of work at Old Oak Common came to an end in July 2022, I was then transferred to the West Midlands to help deliver Bachy Soletanche’s N1 and N2 contract for HS2, which covers the Coventry to North Birmingham section of the new high-speed line. I feel very lucky to be starting out on such a major project!
After years of learning all the theoretical knowledge at university, I was ready to get out there and put it into practice.
I’ll never stop challenging myself
In terms of the future, I’m enjoying where I am now but I hope to continuously progress, expand my skill set as much as possible and take any opportunity to challenge myself. I think this is one of my favourite things about engineering – it challenges you to be the best version of yourself and reach a potential that you never even knew you had.
You also tend to appreciate everything you studied in school more when you get out on site and see it in real life. For that reason, I want to say a special thanks to the Old Oak Common team for giving me the opportunity of a lifetime, I don’t know where I would be without their belief in me. I guess you could say I took one of the more unorthodox routes into the industry, but my curiosity and determination paid off in the end.