My Stantec Story: collaborating for better climate outcomes with Amber Leversedge
August 25, 2022
August 25, 2022
Amber, graduate environmental planner, shares how she is driving positive changes as a climate champion
In the My Stantec Story series, our designers, engineers, marketers, project managers, and leaders come together to share how their career journeys at Stantec have shaped their lives and moved them closer to their goals.
I joined Stantec’s Bristol office in September 2021 as a graduate Environmental Planner in the Environment, Energy and Infrastructure team. My main role involves working on environmental impact assessments. This is a tool used to ensure a development or project proposal considers the possible effects on the environment at the earliest stage and proposes mitigation measures. I am also involved in sustainability, social value, and climate work.
I studied Sustainability and Environmental Management (Integrated Masters) at the University of Leeds where I developed my interest in climate change science and solutions, environmental and ecological economics, and social sustainability. Stantec’s ambitious climate change targets and promise to “design with community in mind” drew me to the company. I admired their commitment to promoting sustainability, not just within Stantec, but also taking responsibility to influence others to produce better climate outcomes. Stantec’s values resonate strongly with me. In particular, we put people first and we do what is right. In our current situation, it is vital that we tailor development to suit the specific needs of communities and work to reduce emissions and promote innovative solutions.
My favourite part of being an environmental planner is the opportunity to work with, and learn from, a variety of other disciplines including transport planners, air quality consultants, and ecology specialists. Understanding how these disciplines are interlinked is fundamental to reducing environmental harm and promoting sustainability in projects and development proposals.
Stantec has helped to develop my skills both personally and professionally. I am part of the social team at Stantec, which is great way to meet colleagues and gives me the opportunity to come up with activities that are accessible and enjoyable for all. Being a member of the social team has helped to improve my confidence, communication, and organisation skills. Brainstorming ideas for the socials is really fun and allows you to be creative! I am also part of the South West Climate Champions group which consists of employees from each discipline who meet monthly. The overall aim of the sessions is to discuss how to embed climate change solutions into our projects. These sessions are extremely interesting as you have the opportunity to hear a variety of different perspectives.
During my time at Stantec the standout project I have worked on is the Climate Education Project. This project was designed to bring climate change knowledge into the school curriculum, spanning multiple subjects to inform and inspire students. My role was to create the content for the sessions and help implement them in the school. The sessions consisted of geography lessons where information was provided on climate change, students were given an introduction to GIS, and fieldwork was undertaken in Bicester. In maths lessons, students analysed the fieldwork data creating graphs and charts and in English the students created presentations on their chosen climate change solution which they presented in a project showcase. The project was a great success, and we hope to expand it in the future.
My favourite part of being an environmental planner is the opportunity to work with and learn from a variety of other disciplines including transport planners, air quality consultants, and ecology specialists.
I am excited about future opportunities at Stantec and will continue to get involved in a wide variety of projects to expand my knowledge base and improve my transferable skills. I would like to get chartered in the future so will continue to work towards practitioner level.
Outside of work, I enjoy climbing and baking sweet treats. I love being out in nature and try and go out on walks as often as I can.
Stantec is a great company to work for as a graduate because there is a real emphasis on finding your passion and having supportive colleagues, and the opportunity to try a variety of different projects provides the ideal environment to flourish. Looking back over the last ten months, I am proud of how much I have grown both personally and professionally, and employees at Stantec challenging me to go outside of my comfort zone has been the catalyst for this development.
At Stantec, we always design with community in mind, and for Amber that means a role where she can make a real impact on society. If you want to start your career at Stantec, visit Graduates & Apprentices to find out more.