For Naomi, an enquiring mind is key to being a successful engineer.
“If you like problem-solving, and often think ‘why is that like that?’, then you’ve got the right mindset for engineering.”
The WelTec graduate has been working at Beca as an engineering technician for two and a half years. In fact, she started the job straight after finishing her studies.
“I completed my last exam at WelTec on a Friday and then started work the following Monday.”
At the moment, she’s working on the MacKays to Peka Peka Expressway on the Kapiti Coast – one of the major infrastructure projects underway in the region.
She’s the utilities design team lead and work package manager, helping to divert services (such as waste-water, power and telecommunications) underneath the expressway and around structures.
“If people are thinking about getting into engineering, there are fantastic opportunities. Things always need to be built, expanded or upgraded.
"There are jobs galore in the industry so it’s not a case of where you’re going to work when you come out, it’s where do you want to work, what do you want to do."
Naomi recently gained her New Zealand Diploma in Engineering Practice, giving her associate membership of the Institute of Professional Engineers New Zealand and making her a certified engineering technician.
Naomi initially went to university, but found it wasn’t for her. She liked the fact that WelTec offered small classes and a practical approach to engineering.
“It’s slightly more like a classroom where you feel like you can ask questions, whereas at a university with 300 people in a lecture, you don’t feel like you want to put your hand up and ask a question. It helps you understand it from start to finish because you can ask those questions along the way.
“It’s also quite practical, which solidifies the theory behind it. The lecturers will either take you out to do surveying – we did hours of surveying each week – or in geotech, we dug holes and had a look at different rock formations around the Wellington area, right through to using the hydraulics labs or crushing concrete to see its strength.”
There are jobs galore in the industry so it’s not a case of where you’re going to work when you come out, it’s where do you want to work, what do you want to do.