India Eiloart

Environmental Graduate (Wellington)

Part of the Water Resources Group under the Environment team at WSP Opus for the last couple of years, India has been hard at work on a range of different projects, thanks to the breadth of environmental services that WSP Opus offer. While she’d never considered researching drinking water quality prior to starting at WSP Opus, she’s now found her niche.

Working towards ensuring everyone has access to safe drinking water, India loves knowing she is contributing to society in such a major way.

“I never could have imagined some of the projects I would get to work on, and that I’d be so confident in the work that I do”

India is excited about how dynamic her work is – jobs like tracking storms to determine when and where emergency work will be required, as well as contributing to the provision of safe drinking water to communities across New Zealand are not things she expected to come across prior to working at WSP Opus.

Her advice for new graduates is to not panic – even though you can feel like you have no idea what you’re doing once you leave university, you’ll quickly realise you’re capable of more than you think.

Follow India’s day in the life of a WSP Opus grad

7:00am

Up and on the harbour to catch the calmest water of the day for our rowing training this morning.

Our Women’s Quad came third overall in last year’s regatta, we’re aspiring for first this year!

9:00am

While we do work on a number of local projects, we often get work with our regional offices around NZ.

Today I’m fortunate to have a site visit in one of the most picturesque districts in NZ, Queenstown! #tourist

10:30am

WSP Opus has a range of internal training courses for both technical and professional development.

I’ve jumped onto an introductory project management course so that I can start managing some of the smaller projects in the team. One of our exercises was to split into two and build half of a bridge each to test our communication skills. Obviously we nailed it, and all with no bridge engineer in sight!

12:00pm

The Environmental team in Wellington is super social, and the work week is incomplete without a coffee and noms run.

Press Hall just opened down the road from us and our Business Manager Alex has treated us to coffee and pastries, delish!

1:00pm

Most of our projects require a broad range of skills.

We often collaborate with other teams such as Bridges, Archaeology, Geotech and Landscape Architecture. I’m working with Lizzie, a fellow UC grad from the Geotech team, on a landslip which requires both geotechnical and stormwater engineering to return the site to a functioning state. We’ll shortly also need landscape architecture input to complete the site ready for residents.

2:30pm

Celebratory coffee!

We have been working on a tough job these past few months, and we just got the final ticks of approval on the report, so our Project Director Jess has taken us out for coffee to celebrate the achievement.

3:30pm

Every week our team has a Lunchtime Learnings.

It’s more like afternoon tea but we can’t resist the alliteration. This week is my turn! We present on interesting secondments, challenging projects or our previous studies. Today I’m sharing the work I do with Engineers Without Borders NZ as their Marketing Manager and about the opportunities WSP Opus has had with EWBNZ –  such as attending the annual Humanitarian Engineering Conference in Auckland.

4:15pm

I've been training up on the use of some MIKE DHI modelling software.

This is to model river systems and stormwater networks and their impacts on residents and infrastructure. Today I’m sensitivity testing my model of a river and the effects it has on a proposed bridge replacement/calibrating a stormwater network model with an actual flood event that occurred to check that our model is a fair representation of the system.

7:30pm

I'm surrounded by research institutes and universities in the city centre.

Down the road is Vic Uni. I’m checking out a public lecture on the water challenges of the Netherlands due to climate change and their heightened vulnerability being situated below sea level. A fascinating presentation by Delta Decisions advisor Adriënne van der Sar on programmes implemented to adapt to climate change and build a water-resilient country.

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