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Getting noticed in the world of building services engineering

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2017 CIBSE ANZ Young Engineer of the Year, Simon Green, didn’t have high expectations of winning when he entered the awards last year but as he explains, winning isn’t the only benefit to entering:

When my manager recommended that I apply for the CIBSE ANZ Young Engineer of the Year, I thought that I would stand no chance. I had only been working for as a mechanical services engineer for a couple of years. I had helped out on an existing building upgrade here, a new construction project there, but had just been doing my job. My designs were not always beautiful and rarely if ever ground-breaking.

The application process was, first and foremost, a chance to take stock of what I had achieved in the building services industry so far. I imagine that most young engineers, after swimming in the deep end since day one, lose perspective on the steepness of their professional development curve. I definitely had, and writing out a few words about the buildings that I had worked on was in itself a rewarding exercise. It was also a healthy reminder to thank all those seniors colleagues who had always been hovering around with great advice and a life buoy in hand, just in case I ever started to go under!

More than just an inwardly directed experience, being named Young Engineer of the Year was an amazing opportunity to network. After meeting a handful of people at the awards night, it was easy to start up conversations at the next few CIBSE technical talks. I have even organically bumped into a couple of those members through work. In fact, I am quickly realising how small the building services world is, and how who you know (and what they think of you) can sometimes be as important as what you know. In this respect, I think that I will look back on the award as a kind of ‘debutante ball’ – the time when I launched myself from the darkened graduate backroom into the real world of clients, contractors and competitors.
Simon Green, Graduate Engineer, Arup

The 2018 competition is now open for entries and is seeking future thought leaders to answer the question, “Where do you see the future of building services heading?” The Awards are a way for young members to declare their commitment to a career in building services and to gain exposure to the industry at large. Students, those who have graduated in the past two years or Young Engineers up to the age of 35, who have a voice, are encouraged to enter:

• Student of the Year*;
• Graduate of the Year* or
• Young Engineer of the Year*

Entries for all awards close on 1 May 2018.

The 2018 Awards ceremony and CIBSE annual cocktail function will be held in Sydney at the Westpac Room at Australian Museum, 21 June 2018. 

CIBSE is also looking for like-minded organisations, who share a passion for developing young engineering talent, to sponsor one of the 2018 CIBSE ANZ Young Engineers Award categories. By sponsoring these awards, you are sending a clear message of support for the future of the building services industry. For more information, email Sharon Pestonji at

*Prizes, eligibility information and entry criteria is available on the Awards website.

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