23rd June 2021

Celebrating International Women in Engineering Day

On International Women in Engineering Day, we catch up with Samantha McGillivray, who shares insight into working as an Engineer for McAlpine Design Group.

Introducing Samantha McGillivray, Temporary Works Engineer for McAlpine Design Group.

Samantha started as Summer student with Sir Robert McAlpine in 2013 where she developed an interest in contracting. She remained with the company working part time, before graduating and joining full time in 2014. Originally studying architecture, she fell in love with Engineering and decided to follow her passion. She moved into the McAlpine Design Group after working as a site engineer on various projects and hasn’t looked back.

During university and attending architectural classes, I realised that I was more interested in the engineering side of the degree. I was a site engineer with Sir Robert McAlpine for two years, spent some time at the City of Glasgow College – City Campus and then the remainder in London at Fitzroy Place. I then decided I wanted a change and was fortunate to be put forward for a design placement at McAlpine Design Group, and since then, I haven’t looked back.

Samantha loves seeing her designs in place on site. Doing temporary works allows her a unique opportunity to do both design and site visits, something she really enjoys. She attributes mentorship to a large factor in her career growth, and credits McAlpine Design Group for allowing her to flourish and grow, including through her Institute of Civil Engineers Chartership Scheme. Outside of engineering, she is both inspired and fascinated by Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister of New Zealand, based on her ability to manage a demanding job and healthy family life.

In the future, Samantha plans to complete her chartership and has aspirations to grow into the role of Principal Design Engineer with McAlpine Design Group.

When asked about what advice you would give to those considering a career in engineering, Samantha said:

“Engineering can be so rewarding so try it. Plus, there are many paths/roles beyond engineering you could consider if you decide that it isn’t for you. Engineering opens so many doors.”

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