My Stantec Story: Building an apprentice civil engineering career with Vinnie Redfearn
January 30, 2023
January 30, 2023
Vinnie shares how the apprenticeship route means he’s not only building on his professional experience but also has support from his colleagues
As an apprentice civil engineer in the Water sector, I assist in the delivery of a variety of projects. So far, I have worked on the implementation of underground storage tanks, sustainable drainage systems, and analysing data to reduce the spill rate of combined sewer overflows. My daily tasks consist of technical drawings, written reports, and the use of CAD. I have also been helping out with information management across a couple of projects, which requires a lot of organisation. Something I’ve learnt is that problem solving at work is inevitable but always comes in new and exciting forms.
When I first started looking into the company, I noticed that Stantec is one of the top 10 global design firms in the world. This appealed to me as someone who wanted to apply for an apprenticeship role, as working in an established environment alongside real professionals would provide a high-quality learning experience. Stantec’s degree apprenticeship allowed me to get involved with innovative projects from the very start, while completing a degree in my chosen field.
I could see online that Stantec advertised themselves as a very welcoming and inclusive company, but when I finally joined, they exceeded my expectations. The culture is about helping each other and embracing our differences. Since joining I’ve noticed this is a common talking point when asking other colleagues what their experience at Stantec has been like. In terms of working conditions, I feel that I can go about completing my work in the way that I want. There is no micro-management, which allows people to work better without unnecessary pressure. Even though I’m often left to complete my work independently, I always feel comfortable asking for help, should I require it.
I could see online that Stantec advertised themselves as a very welcoming and inclusive company, but when I finally joined, they exceeded my expectations. The culture is about helping each other and embracing our differences.
As a relatively new apprentice, my role is not set in stone—and will continue to develop over the coming years. I really enjoy the concept of designing solutions that fix real world problems, helping communities simultaneously. The challenges that I will face while I solve these problems will add an element surprise to my projects, making sure no day is ever the same. This makes for a role that excites me to come into work.
From the first day, it’s been made clear the support I have around me. I have been assigned a line manager, as well as a delegated engineer to assist me with my IPD online (Initial Professional Development) to achieve Engineering Technician status. There are a lot of people around me to help out, whether it’s a personal issue or a technical query. There has also been a vast number of opportunities to socialise with other colleagues outside of work. The Leeds office puts on a lot of social events, some of which are with the DPG (Developing Professionals Group). It’s a great way to get to know others.
My short-term goal is to learn as much as possible, so I can help in different areas of projects. Not only would this be beneficial for the project completion, but I’ll feel a greater sense of purpose in the work I complete. After five or six years, I aim to have completed my apprenticeship with Stantec, as well as my Bachelor of Engineering (with honours) in Civil Engineering. I’ll then be ready to earn my incorporated status with the Institution of Civil Engineers. At some point in the future, I want to become a chartered engineer too—which would be great to achieve here at Stantec.
I highly recommend others to join Stantec, whether that’s as an apprentice/graduate or an experienced engineer. You’ll be in an environment where your opinion matters, no matter what position you are in.
At Stantec, we put people first. For Vinnie, that means being able to count on the support of his colleagues as he grows in his chosen profession. If you want to start your career at Stantec, visit our Careers page to find out more.