02 March 2017

Engineering Insight February/March 2017: Give a little

Juliette Thompson

From Futureintech to Engenerate and local Branches to the Governing Board, there are plenty of ways to volunteer with IPENZ. Meet Juliette Thomson GIPENZ, one of the engineers who are giving a little – and gaining a lot.

Based in: Wellington
Role: Design Engineer, Clendon Burns & Park Ltd
Education: BE Hons Civil, University of Auckland, 2015

“At school I was interested in maths and science but also design. The careers counsellor recommended I go and look at the open day for engineering at The University of Auckland so I looked into that and I really liked what I saw. I talked to a few students there and it sounded really interesting. It looked like a degree that could open a lot of doors and wasn’t just limited to one thing. That really attracted me. Now, in my job, I help design buildings so they can withstand gravity forces, seismic earthquakes and  wind forces.

“I’ve been involved with Engenerate for almost two years. I started out on the Engenerate Wellington committee last year, including serving as Wellington Regional Chair. This year, I stepped up to be the National Chair.

“After graduating from university, I moved from Auckland to Wellington to start working, and I wanted to meet people and get involved with the engineering scene here. Joining Engenerate was a good way to do that. The highlight of the role is working with people and collaborating with people who are a similar age to me, with similar goals and similar interests in the engineering world. Working with Engenerate has opened my eyes to different aspects of the engineering world – you don’t just see your day-to-day job, you see interesting parts of other disciplines, too.

“It’s definitely been a good experience to learn how to juggle responsibilities at work and in my voluntary role. Your job, the thing you’re being paid to do, definitely has to take priority. But taking on a voluntary role helps you practice time management.

“I’ve gained so much more than you would think from my experiences with Engenerate. Volunteering within the profession really pushes you to balance your life; to take charge and to take responsibility. It helps you develop your public speaking and event planning skills, and teaches you how to navigate the corporate world. I’d definitely recommend it to other engineers – give it a go.”

Writer: Rachel Berry