Helena Dee

Civil Engineer – VolkerFitzpatrick

Why did you become an Ambassador?
I became an ambassador to help raise awareness of engineering subjects with school pupils. When I was applying for university I didn’t even know what civil engineering was and only started looking into studying it after a friend was talking about it.

How much time do you commit to Ambassador Activities?
I am very busy at work so generally help at a couple of activities every year.

What activities have you been involved in?
I have helped at a science day in a girls school where groups of pupils made chairs from newspaper sticks (STIXX) and at a ‘Dragons Den’ style business enterprise day at a boys grammar school. I have also been involved in a science focus day for schools in the county and have been interviewed by pupils for a project they were completing on STEM careers.

What do you feel were the positive outcomes for the pupils?
The pupils seem to enjoy the ‘hands-on’ approach to the STEM events I have helped with. It also helps dispel preconceptions of STEM careers and helps demonstrate that a huge variety of careers exist. Not all scientists have crazy hair, round glasses and wear lab coats, and not all engineers are men with beards!

What do you feel were the positive outcomes for yourself?
I have gained confidence in working with pupils – talking to a class doesn’t phase me anymore! It is also great for networking with other STEM professionals and looks great on your CV.

Do you have any tips for future STEM Ambassadors?
Give it a go -there are so many different activities to help with. Don’t feel like you don’t have the experience or knowledge needed. A lot of the time teachers are just happy to have some help!

 

"Give it a go - there are so many different activities to help with. Don’t feel like you don’t have the experience or knowledge needed. A lot of the time teachers are just happy to have some help!"