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Bryn Noble

Bryn Noble

Civil engineer, WSP

Expertise

Design, Structural, Construction

Location

United Kingdom
Career highlights

Won the ICE QUEST Foreign Language Award, which allowed me to study Mandarin

First WSP graduate engineer to go on an internal international secondment to India

ICE President’s Future Leader 2018-2019

A day in my life

It can range from attending site and inspecting construction works to analysis and detailed design in the office, and technical report writing to project management.

Within three years in industry I’ve gained design experience in highways, drainage, residential development, airports, flood risk assessments, structures and geotechnics.

There aren’t many other industries which can offer such a diverse range of work.

Currently I’m working as a structural engineer in a local government office.

This means most of the projects are local and I can visit them often to inspect the works and watch my designs being constructed, which is great.

It also gives me the opportunity to engage with the public and answer any of their queries.

I’m a civil engineer, but I’m also a second Dan black belt in Tae Kwon Do, and a below-average drummer.

My career inspiration

It was in my blood, or more likely my family did.

My dad was a site engineer for the construction and delivery of the M4 and M5, in the '70s my mum was part of an all-female construction team, 12 off them in North Wales.

My brother is a tradesman and my cousin a civil engineer.

I've no doubt that seeing how fondly they all speak of their experiences and their enthusiasm for the industry encouraged me.

With that encouragement and my passion for problem solving, civil engineering was a natural choice.

I can say now I’m glad I never strayed from the path.

What’s one great thing that you love about civil engineering that you didn’t know until you started working in the industry?

That civil engineering has an impact on the health of society. The design decisions we take and solutions we implement can have a direct influence on the physical, mental and social health of society.

A fantastic example of this being Sir Joseph Bazalgette’s sewer system which eliminated cholera from London, vastly improving the physical health of the city.

Why can’t we do this with mental or social health?

Which civil engineering myth(s) you would like to bust?

Civil engineering only means construction. It’s just not true.

Civil engineers improve the quality of life for society, we do this through a variety of ways, construction is just one of them.

This is why my project as one of President’s Future Leaders is focused on understanding how civil engineers can help mitigate loneliness.

Which civil engineering project (past or present) do you wish you’d worked on?

I would love to have worked on the English Channel Tunnel.

Sometimes it’s easy to forget how far we’ve come technically and what we can achieve. We tunnelled under an ocean to connect two countries, I think it’s amazing, and a great example of engineers collaborating between countries.

How many other industries can offer work of that scale, importance and consequence?

What about being a civil engineer inspires you?

The people I work with. Whether I’m developing solutions in the office alongside my colleagues or attending sites and problem solving with the team there.

This industry is full of wonderful, funny, charming personalities, and I thoroughly enjoy working with all of them.

Would you recommend a career in civil engineering?

I would highly recommend a career a civil engineering because it’s just so much fun.

You can choose and define your own career path.

Being a civil engineer means improving the quality of life for others. There are so many ways in which you can do this, I guarantee there’s a role for all within the industry. Ultimately, this contribution to society provides a great sense of purpose.

On a less serious note, it’s always good fun.

Education

I studied A-levels in mathematics, physics, computing and psychology at sixth form and then went to study a Masters (MEng) degree in civil engineering at the University of Plymouth.

I’m now a graduate engineer at WSP on a three-year graduate scheme and currently on the ICE Training Scheme to become a Chartered Engineer.