Profile: Auttapone Karndacharuk
Engineering offers many opportunities. One of these opportunities is the ability to work flexibly. This case study is one of a series which showcases the diverse people working in engineering and their varied working arrangements.
Who do you work for?
What tertiary qualifications do you hold?
I have a Bachelor of Engineering, a Masters of Engineering and a PhD, all in Civil Engineering (Transportation).
What professional memberships do you hold? What awards have you received?
I’m a Professional Member of IPENZ, a Chartered Professional Engineer and an International Professional Engineers registrant.
I received a doctoral scholarship from Auckland Transport to undertake research study at the University of Auckland.
What is your current role and what does it involve?
I’m Principal Consent Specialist. This involves reviewing and coordinating a holistic transportation response to planning and land-use development proposals.
How many hours do you work in the average working week?
What is your current employment and personal situation?
Working in the area of transport engineering and planning for both the public and private sections in New Zealand has been an invaluable experience.
Privately, I just got married in August to my fiancée, who I have been with for the past 12 years.
Why did you decide on a career in engineering?
It was a natural progression for me starting from the idea that an engineering study is a big challenge intellectually. I undertook a Masters degree for improved career opportunity and later it’s the notion of a Chartered Professional Engineer (professionalism) that keeps me in the engineering career.
How has your company supported you to balance your work and other commitments?
For my PhD study (2010–14), Auckland Transport not only supported me financially and time-wise, but also provided a flexible working arrangement so as to allow me to do both (study and work) at the same time. It was really hard, but I thoroughly enjoyed it, especially when I see my research findings benefit the organisation and the (transport) industry.
What does the future hold for you professionally and privately?
I wish to be able to contribute my knowledge in an intergovernmental environment, such as working for the UN, World Bank or OECD. At a later stage of my life I want to make a positive contribution to the development of transport systems in Thailand and other ASEAN countries.
What advice do you have for others who are seeking to work more flexibly or who are managing work and commitments?
I am very lucky to have an understanding partner and supportive parents. I’d say having an ongoing supportive environment is really important in balancing various commitments besides knowing wholeheartedly that what you are committed to is worthwhile doing.
Thanks to Aut for taking the time to give us an insight into his life.
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