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Elise Nolan, Graduate Engineer, Transportation (Civil), Atkins


Graduate Engineer, Transportation (Civil)

What have been your key achievements since joining Atkins?

I’ve been fortunate enough to work on a complete range of projects that have allowed me to complete my training agreement with the ICE in four years from joining as a new Graduate.  I’ve worked on the detailed design of the A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon, Highways England’s largest project at the time, with a subsequent secondment into the construction phase of the scheme; I’ve had a role as an Assistant Project Manager, where I was also able to develop solutions in an option phase design for schemes based in the Midlands.  The range of experiences has given me a well rounded portfolio of exposure to my technical discipline, Highways, which has been beneficial in each new role that I have undertaken.
I have also been given the responsibility of Team Leader to a group of six Graduates and Apprentices in the Early Careers Practice, within the Transportation Engineering business.  This is an amazing opportunity for me to develop my skills as a manager, but I also think it’s fantastic that Atkins are open to taking a different approach to the traditional methods of managing, by pairing up groups of young professionals with managers who have recently been through the process themselves and can offer fresh and current guidance.

What attracted you to Atkins?

Atkins is a large, multi-disciplinary organisation that offers a huge variety of projects and opportunities, both within the UK and further afield.  The ability to work on these projects was really exciting and has helped me to progress with my professional development at an excellent pace.  Not only that, but as an international organisation there are possibilities to work with or in other countries, which is an added bonus.
The attitude that Atkins has towards flexible working and inclusion made me feel like the organisation would be a great place to work with like-minded people, where I would feel part of a community rather than just another employee.  Having worked here for a few years now, I can say with certainty that my initial perceptions were correct!

What other activities have you been involved with?

I had the pleasure of being a Graduate Representative for Transportation during my time on the GDP.  Atkins really value their young professional community, and the Forums are a great way for Graduates to develop skills and networks, whilst also making the GDP the best it can be.  I used my experience as a Graduate Rep as evidence towards my Attributes for the ICE Training Scheme, and also helped launch a number of initiatives, such as the annual Recognition Awards, which are still very much a part of the Graduate experience.
I’ve also been a keen STEM Ambassador since joining the company.  Atkins hold high standards of social responsibility as an employer, and allow members of staff two paid volunteer days each year to undertake charitable activities.  It’s fantastic to get in involved in STEM, which I’m really passionate about as an Engineer, but it’s even better when I have support from the company to take dedicated time away from the office to promote our industry.

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