News & Views

FPS Early Careers Group Presentation to Southbank University

The Federation of Piling Specialists (FPS), as part of its Early Careers Group (ECG) initiative and Ground Forum Mentoring Scheme, presented to students at Southbank University on why they should choose a career within the ground engineering industry.

Some 18 students attended the event held 22nd April 2021, which was hosted by former ECG Chair David Major (Expanded Piling) and new ECG Vice Chair, Laylee Eftekhar (Bauer Technologies). As well as the opportunities a career within ground engineering offers, David and Laylee also touched upon a few ‘technical questions the group had asked so that they could understand the geotechnical industry better.

The presentation commenced with an overview of the geotechnical industry and piling, with a discussion about the many types of projects that are undertaken. Specific areas of working, such as how load transfers into the ground and what some the key considerations for delivering a successful ground engineering project, were also discussed.

Beginning with careers, the presentation explored what ground engineering can offer individuals, from the various roles within the sector and what they involve through to the many opportunities and rewards available. Specific career path options were explained before the presentation moved on to the many questions raised during the session including:

• How do you overcome boulders and rock when installing piled foundations?
• When requiring support fluid, what considerations do you make?
• Can you provide a summary of steel foundations versus concrete foundations?
• When piles require support fluid for the construction methodology, do you also require temporary casings?
• How easy is it to remove existing piles when they clash?
• What happens when a pile fails an integrity test post-installation?

Post-event, a lot of positive feedback was received, with students taking the time to connect with the ECG on LinkedIn. The student’s lecturer also added that they hoped to arrange future events for students, allowing them to learn and engage more with the FPS.