Students from St. Brendan’s College in Belmullet took time out from their studies last week to sample life as an engineer on the Corrib Gas Project. Twenty-one students met with engineers from Shell as part of Engineers Week, which aims to celebrate engineering in Ireland and to promote the profession as a career option for students.
Fun was very much at the centre of the day’s activities with the students taking part in a team challenge to design and build a functional bridge. Innovation and competitiveness were to the fore as the budding students were guided by Shell’s engineers in selecting materials, keeping to a timescale and completing the challenge within budget.
Presentations were also given by some of the engineers, explaining the different types of engineering and the many practical applications required to build large infrastructural projects.
Speaking at the end of the day, Bernie McManamon, who is a civil engineer with Shell and a native of Erris, said it was wonderful to be able to share her experience of working on Corrib with the students.
“A range of engineering disciplines have been required to deliver the Corrib Gas Project which is the largest energy infrastructural project in Ireland. As an engineer, today’s visit provided an opportunity to give real life examples about how exciting engineering can be as a career.”
Local businessman and engineering advocate, Cathal Shevlin of Shevlin Engineering shared his experience of developing his business, which is now exporting products to Europe and the Middle East. “It has taken a lot of hard work to grow my business over the last 15 years and this has been achieved by investing in new technology and people. As a career, engineering offers a huge amount of opportunities and I would strongly recommend it.”
Stephanie O’Sullivan, a teacher at St Brendan’s said that the students were delighted with their visit: “The students really enjoyed their visit and I’m very grateful to the engineers from Shell for taking the time to encourage the students. Engineering is such an important profession and it can also provide for a very enjoyable career. I very much hope that we have one or two future engineers as a result of today visit.”
Top right picture above: Shell Engineers who participated in Engineers Week 2015 from (l to r) William Reilly, Karen Barrett, Conor Gallagher, John Kelly, John Barrett, Michelle O’Sullivan, Bernie McManamon and Michael Barry.