Senior Consultant, EA Technology
We need a diverse group of people in STEM to improve things for everyone.
WHAT DO YOU DO?
I use my engineering skills (problem solving, data analysis, communication and team work) to help make sure that electricity networks are ready to provide power for electric vehicles. My work has included running a large trial of home charging technology with nearly 700 volunteers. At the moment I'm working on an online tool to bring together transport and electricity network data for the first time.
In the past I've also worked on how we connect and use large batteries to support renewable energy generators.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THIS FIELD?
I've always been interested in maths and science and how things work. My Granddad was an engineer for a power station. My dad was a food scientist. My parents encouraged my interests with Lego, Meccano and a chemistry set.
When I was at school I took part in a robot building competition and did my work experience at a local engineering company. I did a taster week (Headstart) during Year 12 where I went to a University for a week to try lots of different engineering activities.
I did a mechanical engineering degree at Lancaster University. I wanted to use my skills in a way which really benefits society - and electricity networks and low carbon transport fits with this.
WHAT DO YOU LOOK AT & THINK, "I WISH YOUNGER ME WOULD HAVE KNOWN THIS WAS POSSIBLE?"
There's a couple of things. The first one was when I was running a group of much more experienced engineers to produce a guide to energy storage based on their work. I'd never have expected to be co-ordinating a group like that, and to be the lead author putting the guide together.
The second was the Electric Nation trial - I was appointed technical lead. It was all-consuming for three years, but we produced really high quality outputs and our field trial ran smoothly.
WHY DO YOU LOVE WORKING IN STEM?
I love the variety to it, and the fact that the field I'm working in keeps developing. I joined my current employer nearly ten years ago. Back then we weren't a major player in Smart Grid projects - now it's central to our work.
The fact that the work we're doing makes a real difference is important to me.
It's an area which will keep me busy for years to come - the challenges associated with the transition to net zero mean there's plenty to do!
BEST ADVICE FOR NEXT GENERATION?
To follow your interests, because we need a diverse group of people in STEM to improve things for everyone. STEM offers great, interesting, rewarding careers.
INSPO / FUN FACT
“Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.”