More about Rebecca
In her first year of studies at NTU, BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering student Rebecca Paramor was one of two students awarded the prestigious Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) QUEST Scholarship and is sponsored by leading UK construction group Morgan Sindall. Now in her third year, Rebecca is currently working as a Site Engineer on a year-long placement with the company.
What do you enjoy most about your course at NTU?
The BEng Civil Engineering course at NTU offers both the practical and theoretical side of engineering, which ensures that each uni day is different and exciting. One day might have surveying practicals or material labs and the next might have a mixture of lectures and seminars.
The high standard of teaching and fantastic facilities at NTU are valuable to my learning and development and I’d highly recommend the University and course.
How do the University staff support your learning and experience?
From day one of joining NTU, the staff have been so welcoming and always have a smile. The course staff are so engaging and ensure that every module is presented in the most interesting and fun way. They help you to achieve your best with the feedback and support they provide.
Not only do they support you with your work, but any other issues you may be experiencing. They are very understanding and always want the best for their students.
Tell us about your current placement.
I am an ICE QUEST Scholar with Morgan Sindall and currently on my placement year on the M27 Junction 4 to 11 Smart Motorway Scheme in Hampshire. It is a joint venture with Morgan Sindall and BAM Nuttall (BMJV) which started in January 2018 and is due to be complete in March 2021. The aim of the £244 million project is to reduce congestion on the 24 km of road between Junction 4 to Junction 11, by removing the hard shoulder and creating another live lane.
My day to day role includes managing sub-contractors on site and writing a site diary to record labour and plant use. I create schematics of the job to help plan the scope of works and manage the logistics of materials and plant. I also look to descope the work by using value engineering ideas to save time on the programme and cost. This includes reducing the number of steel sheet piles being used by coming up with alternative retaining solutions such as plastic sheet piles or earthwork regrades.
During the summer of 2018, I completed an 8-week summer placement with Morgan Sindall working on the Acton Train Modification Unit in London for London Underground. I used the total station to set out the new drainage and gave health and safety inductions to new operatives. The placement gave me new knowledge to take into my second year of university and I’d highly recommend summer placements to all first-year students.
What is the most interesting aspect of your placement?
The most enjoyable aspect of the placement is meeting new people and being able to network and listen to other people’s experiences in the construction industry. I have thoroughly enjoyed attending the ladies lunches every month to meet other females in the project and discuss challenges that they have experienced in their career and how these have been resolved.
Being chosen to become a STEM Ambassador and Go Construct Ambassador has been one of the most rewarding aspects of the placement. Being able to inspire the younger generation along with my colleagues and share my experience of working in construction has been so enjoyable and I hope to continue this throughout my career.
What skills have you been able to develop as a result of this placement?
I have learnt how to communicate my ideas effectively to others. For example, I have recently presented to the project director and engineering manager to show them my idea of plastic sheet piles and how effective they will be to the programme and cost. The cost savings and programme efficiencies that this product will provide will be so beneficial to the delivery of this project.
I have also been able to develop my surveying skills by using the latest technology to set out structures and survey the existing ground to produce cross sections.
How will these skills enhance your employability?
These skills will hopefully be able to help me to progress through my career to a construction manager role. I feel that they will benefit me to achieve my chartership and become a well-rounded engineer.