Sarah Bowden

Associate Director, Arup


You too can be an altruistic engineer.

What do you do?

I support Arup's Group and Trustee Boards to deliver governance and change programmes.

Why did you choose this field?

As a child I loved bridges, their structure, their aesthetics and their power to connect. Problem solving and bringing people together to deliver optimum outcomes for society has always been what drives me. Being part of the engineering world enables me to be surrounded by solutions that fascinate me and people that inspire me whilst knowing that we have the ability to work with nature to make the world a better place for future generations.

What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?

Having a family and a career is possible; it is a juggle but it is worth it. You don't have to work all hours to contribute something of value.

Why do you love working in STEM?

I love the fact that you see things on the news, challenges and hardship that needs to be overcome, and then I realise that my work colleagues are already coming up with great ideas to address these issues. The desire they have to use their skills to the benefit of people and planet is awesome.

Best advice for next generation?

Engineers can often be associated with ego - who can build the biggest, fastest, tallest, smallest. But engineers have a huge altruistic role to play. Sir Joseph Bazalgette didn't just create a sewer network for London, he was instrumental in relieving the city from cholera epidemics and saved many lives. You too can be an altruistic engineer.

Inspo quote / fun fact / role model

“No one is too small to make a difference.”

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