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Engineering Technicians (EngTech)

Charlotte Anne Huntley EngTech TMIET

Published: 19/08/2020

Photo of Charlotte smilingEducation and qualifications:
National Diploma in Electrical & Electronic Engineering - Distinction*Distinction
Higher National Certificate (HNC) in Electrical & Electronic Engineering - Distinction
BS 7671 Requirements for Electrical Installations. IET Wiring Regulations 18th Edition training
Pump Centre - Young Engineer Awards 2020 - Apprentice Category Winner

Job title:
Student Electrical Instrumentation Control and Automation (EICA) Engineer

Employer:
Arcadis

What inspired you to become an engineer or pointed you towards an engineering career?
I’ve always liked knowing how things work and it was my brother-in-law that steered me towards the engineering sector, by taking me on work experience with him for a week at a power station. I loved every minute and that’s when I knew I wanted to be an engineer.

Please describe your role or position within your workplace.
I am a Student Electrical, Instrumentation, Control and Automation Engineer. I am the only student within my team and my role is to support the engineers with design and engineering work while developing my own knowledge, skills and experience.

Can you describe a typical working day?
My typical working day involves working as part of a multidisciplinary design team, producing design and engineering solutions for clean water and wastewater treatment works projects. As part of the EICA team I look at the complete electrical scope from medium and low voltage site power distribution, through to automation and instrumentation for process control. As part of this work I produce and update calculations, drawings, specifications, load schedules, and many other EICA deliverables. I also liaise with suppliers and attend meetings with clients.

Are there any particular challenges or unusual aspects to your role?
When dealing with multiple clients, it can be challenging to keep abreast of all the different client specifications. We need to ensure we fulfil all their requirements and successfully deliver their preferred designs to specification.

What do you find most enjoyable about your job?
I enjoy having the opportunity to work on different projects across the UK. I always learn something new when working on a new project. I also enjoy having the opportunity to visit sites to further my knowledge and experience.

Is there a great professional achievement or high-profile accomplishment that you would like to tell us about?
I recently passed the BS 7671: Requirements for Electrical Installations. IET Wiring Regulations 18th Edition training, which has allowed me to develop as a young engineer. I am also extremely proud of myself for achieving the Engineering Technician (EngTech) professional registration and recognition at a young age. In addition, this year I won the Pump Centre’s Young Engineer Awards Apprentice Category.

What contributed to your decision to become professionally registered?
Upon joining my company, I was encouraged to look at professional registration, and plan out my development route through HNC, degree and onto gaining Chartered Engineer (CEng) status. The first step for me was to work towards obtaining EngTech status. I think this professional registration reinforces my knowledge and skills, as well as my commitment to my profession.

I am currently studying a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Electrical and Electronic Engineering part-time, for which my company sponsors me on a day release arrangement. I am continuing to develop as an engineer, gaining experience from my role alongside my academic studies. When I first started with the company, I began by completing a National Diploma, which then allowed me to move onto an HNC, and I have now started the HND. My plan after that is to study a two-year top-up Bachelor of Science degree (also part time) in Electrical and Electronic Engineering. I find it is really interesting studying part time - learning things about the industry and then being able to apply that knowledge in my role, as well as learning things at work that help support my studies.

Gaining experience working and studying at the same time will help me to progress to IEng status, and my current plan is to transfer from EngTech to IEng within a year of obtaining my degree.

In what ways has registration benefitted your career?
Obtaining EngTech status has allowed me to gain greater exposure to different clients and projects and more opportunities to develop myself. I think it is an important milestone in an engineer’s career and professional development. I am currently under review for promotion due to my hard work in gaining this professional registration, passing my HNC, my positive contribution to my projects and the overall EICA team’s improvement and development. When I apply for Incorporated Engineer (IEng), I believe that having already obtained EngTech status will strongly support my application and assist in demonstrating my continual professional development.

How does your employer benefit from your professional registration?
By having a workforce that are professionally registered, my company can present themselves as more capable and as a result are able to win more bids, which in turn makes more money. In addition, clients are more likely to want to work with a company who has a professionally registered team as it demonstrates that they are competent, are working to recognised ethical principles and behaviours, and committed to continual improvement and development.

Is there any advice you would pass on to someone considering professional registration?
I would encourage everyone to aim for registration to keep your career progressing and to give yourself a strong sense of achievement. As well as being beneficial to you and your career, professional registration will assist with further development such as an application for IEng.

Where do you see yourself in your career in five years’ time or what are your future ambitions?
In five years, I want to have obtained my Bachelor of Science degree and have been professionally registered as an IEng working towards Chartered status.

Do you participate in any other career-related activities, such as mentoring, volunteering or membership of other engineering groups?
In addition to my role, I am also a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Ambassador. I try to participate in STEM-related activities to encourage children to consider STEM subjects from an early age. I am also the Safety Health and Environment (SHE) hub lead for the water sector for the Wales and South West England area of the UK.

Outside work, is there any activity you enjoy doing in your spare time that relates to engineering?
I enjoy building different things and doing brain teaser activities to keep my mind active. I also enjoy reading E&T Magazine to keep up to date with the latest progressions in technology and the engineering sector.

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