As an Electrical Engineer, tell us what made you choose this career?
As a young kid I found wires fascinating. I wanted to be a pilot too, so I was really keen to somehow combine working with electronics and aircraft one day – I now get to do it for a job!
As a young kid I loved going to work with my dad who was a Technician for Telecom. I would watch him fix everything from internet connections to wiring inside huge telephone exchanges – I found all the wires fascinating. That led me to want to “fix” the electronics in my toys (which mostly involved my breaking them) so I was keen to learn more about electricity and electronics. After taking electronics technology many years later in high school I got a taste for electrical engineering which encouraged me to study it at university. Throughout school I wanted to be a pilot too, so I was really keen to somehow combine working with electronics and aircraft one day – I now get to do it for a job!
How did your school experience help lead you to engineering?
I took electronics technology throughout high school which was a lot of fun. I really liked that there was a nice balance between theory and hands-on work when it came to electronics.
Tell us about your involvement with EVolocity?
As the Technical Lead for the South Island my role is to support teams in solving technical challenges, update the competition rules and organise the technical aspects of the competitions. The EVolocity technical team also designs and builds the energy monitors for the competition, as well as any other bespoke tools needed to run EVolocity.
Other than the technical knowledge, what else do EVolocity students gain from the programme?
EVolocity provides a fantastic opportunity for students to take a big problem, break it down, plan how a solution will be implemented, build and then test it
Project and time management as well as team work are possibly the most important skills an engineer can have. It is very hard to make us of any technical knowledge without these skills. EVolocity provides a fantastic opportunity for students to take a big problem, break it down, plan how a solution will be implemented, build and then test it. This is exactly what engineering is about!
What makes a great engineer in your opinion?
A great engineer is someone that asks a lot of questions, but then does everything they can to get the answers. Whether that be researching or asking someone else for help, the best engineers I’ve worked with are the ones that work hard to find solutions on their own accord.
What does a standard day look like for an Electrical Engineer?
There is definitely no standard day for me! I quite often have multiple projects on at once, each at different stages of development. At any time I could be designing circuit boards, making calculations, planning projects, soldering, wiring, meeting with other technical teams, writing software (coding), testing electronics or writing reports. For me it’s the diversity of work that makes engineering so interesting.
What’s been your career highlight to date?
At university I was part of an engineering team that designed and built a single seat electric race car from scratch. I’ll never forget the feeling of seeing that car race against other teams.
That’s a hard one… so I’ll have to give two. At university I was part of an engineering team that designed and built a single seat electric race car from scratch. I’ll never forget the feeling of seeing that car race against other teams at the competition in Australia. It was incredible to see all our hard work in the car out doing the things it was designed to do. The second thing would be have to be designing and building electronics that are now in space, orbiting around the earth!
Tell us about any mentors or role models you’ve had along the way.
I’m very grateful to have had many mentors over the years, too many to name. However, they all have something in common: they all had achieved something that I was aspiring to do. Whether it was for technical engineering, financial or development of character, I always look up to people that have been successful in an area I am trying to develop and are willing to help push me in a positive direction. Some of my mentors have been school/university teachers, work colleagues, managers, friends and family members.
You clearly love engineering! Tell us about what else you do in your spare time.
In the weekends you will probably find me on a motorbike, mountain bike, surf board or a water ski – I love adventure sports!