YOUNG ENGINEERS demonstrated their fl air for coping with the potential bear pit atmosphere of a public meeting during an NCE-backed competition last week.
Teams from Laing O'Rourke, Atkins and Jacobs presented controversial proposals to an audience of graduates and municipal engineers as part of the London and East regional round of the NCE Communications Competition.
Not only were their presentation and public speaking skills put to the test, but participants had to be quick-witted enough to fi eld questions from a hostile audience.
Huw Griffi hs, Phil Morgan and Valentina Moroskina from Laing O'Rourke kicked off proceedings at Great George Street with a tough assignment to convince a sceptical crowd of the benefits of a massive wind farm.
Atkins came next, with Sonja Holmes, Yat-Hung Kwok, Mary-Ann Paule and Greg Kuo aiming to extol the virtues of their major port project.
Finally a Jacobs squad outlined plans for a coastal protection scheme where a calm, professional approach swayed the judges' opinions.
ndy Courtnadge, John Dillon, Fiona Jackson, Stacey Bassindale and Karl Buchholz will now progress to the next round, where they will take on winners from other regions in the south of England.
Regional heats will continue until the end of May when the Northern, Southern and Midland Area rounds begin. Winners from these heats will take part in the final, to be staged in autumn.
Taking part in the competition contributes to continuing professional development. Registration for 2006 begins in May. Con tact Robert Huxford on (020) 7665 2210 or municipal@ice. org. uk.