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6/115: The NCE Graduate Awards

6/115: The NCE Graduate Awards

Who would have though it? Being Brunel passed the 1000 views mark this week! Oh, and I was also short-listed for the NCE Graduate Awards. The top six of one hundred and fifteen, apparently. I can only assume that someone on the panel has a sense of humour and forgave my somewhat tounge-in-cheek entry.

The majority of past winners visited a sewage treatment works in their childhood. Who would have thought infrastructure so humble could be the founding inspiration of so many?

All this has had the unexpected side-effect of making me too busy to get this week’s post together in time. Although when the interviews are over and the awards are all, well, awarded, I’ll have a whole new story to share; so fret-ye-not.

De-railed, I’ve done some hasty research into the last five winners of the award instead.

The Average Graduate of the Year

Infograph showing statistics for NCE Graduate of the Year.

Info-graphic engineering.

The first question is: who is this NCE Graduate of the Year? It turns out the average winner is a 60% male (the statistics are silent about how this is proportioned) consulting engineer who spends nearly two thirds of neir time working for Arup.

Surprised by the unanimous victories of the consultants- I did a little more digging. It turns out that 2004 was the last year a contractor won the award, and I can say- without a doubt- that 2012 won’t see a change of fortune (as all those short-listed are consultants). David Hayward, who is the awards sectary, has pointed out that this isn’t a bias of the judges, but rather the entrants- with only 19% of the graduates entering this year being contractors.

NCE’low’s Hierarchy of Needs

Inspired by Maslow, I also took the chance to see what experience and qualifications were typical in previous winners (reversed for clarity):

A heirachy of NCE graduate needs.

NCE’s Hierarchy of Graduate Needs

Looking at the last five winners, an MEng is a must, and a first/distinction helps. Charity work features heavily as does talking in schools and playing sport. Surprisingly being on an ICE Graduate committee, or winning prizes does very little.

Perhaps most bewildering, is that the majority of past winners visited a sewage treatment works in their childhood. Who would have thought infrastructure so humble could be the founding inspiration of so many? Unfortunately I haven’t visited a sewage treatment works, although I have toured Dungeness Nuclear Power Station, so I’m hoping this will make the grade!

Betting Odds

Looking at all these statistics, it turns out that the chances of me actually winning the NCE Graduate of the Year award is about 1 in 7.5.

Considering that it was 1 in 6 before I started researching the previous winners, I think it’s fair to say that these findings should be treated, as all statistics, with a pinch of salt.

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Comments

  1. Ed Dablin

    I was ‘Highly Commended’ in 2010. Fit 7 of the needs but sadly no sewage treatment work experience!

    Nice blog. Have subscribed with RSS.

    • That’ll be why- everyone knows you need to have visited a sewage treatment facility to win; in fact- I hope you noticed the winner in my year practicality lives for sewage…

  2. Emma Kent

    I won in 2008 and came across your blog after seeing it mentioned in NCE (International) – you’re famous! Yeah I visited a sewage treatment works as a teenager – it was so great that I became a consulting structural engineer (no sewage anywhere in sight/site!!) Your blog is great, and I love how you put into words exactly how I felt 4 years ago, with such good humour. The photos were one of the funniest bits for me too. And, of course, give it 2 or 3 years and no one gives a flying crap that you were grad of the year in 2008. All the best for your future endeavours.

    • Another previous winner! I’m going to be able to start a collection at this rate!
      Glad you found the blog; does that means they actually included the address in the International Edition?

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  4. […] no, no I won’t…) I found my article highly cringeworthy. I was very curious to see Tom’s analysis and if I fit into this. Ah, no visit to a sewerage works. This year’s winner Jamie Radford must […]

  5. […] ignore a certain pattern that persists between the years: The consultant always wins (especially if he works for Arup). However whilst the male/female divide over the last ten years of victors has been largely […]