Careers Opportunities in Civil & Structural Engineering | Development Advice Guidance - Information & News From Your Career Guide

Opportunity for young engineers

Celebrating exceptional promise in young structural engineers – Institution award now open for entries
The Institution of Structural Engineers aims to inspire future engineers through its Young Structural Engineer of the Year (YSEOY) Award, which is now open for entries.
Cultivating skills and encouraging participation within the industry through awards, grants, projects and campaigning is crucial in the development of young engineers. The YSEOY award is presented to young structural engineers who demonstrate outstanding performance and show exceptional promise for the future.
The winner of last year’s award Eva MacNamara has made an impact in the industry through sheer knowledge and creativity. Spectators are enthralled by her work on the ‘Dune Grass’ project on the Blackpool Promenade.
In an exciting effort to regenerate Blackpool’s central seafront, Eva was the lead structural engineer on the ‘Dune Grass’ project when she was an employee of structural engineering firm Atelier One. She worked with Freestate Architects and LDA to create the fairy-tale like 35m-high swaying ‘Dune Grass’ blades. The giant blades of grass were a part of the overall ‘People’s Playground’ concept, inspired by the notion of escapism, which also includes one of Europe’s largest skate-parks and a colossal 25-person seesaw.
As one of the factors in her winning the prize, YSEOY judges commended the way Eva promotes engineering as a profession to a wide audience, including schools, incorporating the concept of artistic and creative engineering into many of her talks.
While a career divide is often seen between the arts or science and technology – the Institution of Structural Engineers aspires to highlight structural engineering as a career that incorporates many aspects of these subject areas. The Institution is keen to make structural engineering more accessible to those with an interest in subjects aside from the customary science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).
"When I design something and it’s the right engineering solution, it looks beautiful,” states Eva. "I don’t think of art and science as mutually exclusive, but as mutually supportive fields.”
Likewise, Eva stated:
"Many schoolchildren aspire to be architects or artists, but if they have an artistic mind, what they envisage is more easily achieved early on in a career as an engineer.”
Upon winning the YSEOY award earlier this year, Eva expressed to the Institution her passion for her career:
"I love the sense of tranquillity that comes with finding the right structural solution; if it looks beautiful, it is probably working the way it should.”
Additional past winners have included the tremendously skilled young structural engineer Roma Agrawal who participated in structural work on the Shard.
Whilst also demonstrating their talents and promise for the future, past YSEOY winners have been keen promoters of their field – encouraging creative young minds to engineer their inventions into a reality, and promoting the importance of structural engineering for society in keeping buildings functional and safe.
Institution of Structural Engineers Chief Executive, Martin Powell said:
"By providing some recognition, some rewards for innovation, we are encouraging pioneering young minds to nurture that spark of ingenuity and make waves in the industry.”
"Those who inspire, those who care about the state of the industry and have a passion for what they do are the types of people the Institution believes should be rewarded.”