Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Balmforth chooses apprentices for his Presidential term

Incoming ICE President, David Balmforth has selected six young engineers to be his apprentices. They will shadow him and observe his work during his 12 month presidential term.

The apprentices will be given a unique insight into the work of the Presid ent and the Institution by attending meetings and events. They will also meet senior industry figures, politicians and other professionals and work together on a project that will help take the civil engineering profession forward.

Balmforth succeeds the current President Geoff French in November. He will speak on the theme of “Civil Engineering: Fit for the Future” in his presidential address.

Balmforth will look at civil engineering in tomorrow’s world, reflecting on the vision and tenacity of the early Victorian civil engineers and looking ahead to the global mega-trends that will severely test our already fragile society and its supporting infrastructure.

The focus will be on ways in which the ICE and civil engineers need to change so they can be ready and able to meet these challenges.

Balmforth commented: “The quality of the candidates who applied was extremely high and it was a tough decision, but I am confident I have chosen six enthusiastic, articulate, convincing and knowledgeable individuals, who are confident to challenge the status quo.

“I am keen to harness their capability to produce something meaningful for the profession. We need to be much more innovative in our day to day work and I want my apprentices to set out their ideas for how practising engineers and organisations might achieve this.”

Applicants were asked to submit their CV and a 500 word essay on “Why I want to be a President’s Apprentice and what difference I think I might make”.

The president’s apprentices

Elizabeth Barnes, assistant civil engineer, Amec E&I UK

Elizabeth Barnes


“I strongly believe that we must act now if we are to ensure the future of our profession, as our future lays in the hands of tomorrow’s engineers. I would like the opportunity to shape my Institution and to continue the promotion of the profession of civil engineering.”

Peter Coppenhall, tunnel design engineer, Morgan Sindall

Peter Coppenhall

“Given the chance, I would make sure that this opportunity was not wasted by putting in all my energy into each and every task. I believe that to ensure that we, as a society and an Institution, are fit for the future we are shaping; we need to be aware of the decisions we make today.”

Takomborerwa Hove, graduate engineer, URS

Takomborewa Hove

“Serving as a President’s Apprentice would provide an ideal opportunity for me to begin making a lasting impact on resolving challenges and would act as a great stepping stone to re-igniting the entrepreneurial and innovative spirit displayed by Telford, Ammann and Maillart.”

Joanne Huett, graduate engineer, Eurovia UK

Joanne Huett

“I can offer a young and active mind with the ability to assess and use new technology and communication tools. Ready to learn and contribute, I promise to deliver energy and commitment to any project that I work on and put forward ideas and views that I hope will shape important decisions.”

Philippa Jefferis, graduate engineer, Amey

Philippa Jerfferis

“I love how much engineering can achieve and want to share my enthusiasm. Becoming a President’s Apprentice will allow me to share my passion with a wider audience, encouraging more to consider a career in engineering.”

Michelle Roche, graduate engineer, Laing O’Rourke

Michelle Roche

“As an advocate for the ICE I will strive to raise its status and inspire others, particularly women, into engineering. I aim to do so by being open and approachable, with confidence and open-mindedness, traits that have helped me perform as a well-balanced engineer.”

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Please note comments made online may also be published in the print edition of New Civil Engineer. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.