We caught up with Kathryn to discuss her Graduate Programme with Arcadis. We hear about why she chose them, the impact her work has on the wider business and what she has learned from her experience. Kathryn also gives some advice for future applicants.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background?
I have always been really interested in geography and the environment but didn’t have any idea what kind of career I wanted to pursue. I chose my A Level subjects based on what I enjoyed most and studied Geography, Chemistry, Maths, General Studies and English Literature to AS Level. During my A Level studies I started to narrow down what I wanted to study at University and, although I was sure I wanted to go to University, I was not sure at first what to study. I ended up choosing to apply for Geography at Manchester which was brilliant and then I applied to the Environmental Monitoring, Modelling and Reconstruction Masters course which I also really enjoyed. It was during my Masters year that I decided a career in Environmental Consultancy would be ideal for me and found out about the role I now do. Outside of my studies, I have worked various part-time jobs since I was 16 and have enjoyed several work experience placements which helped me ultimately identify which career I wanted to go into. I enjoy socialising with friends, I am a keen runner and I enjoy exploring the great outdoors on foot and by canoe!
What inspired you to apply for this role?
Applying to this Graduate Programme presented the opportunity to work at a really insightful company with a strong reputation. I was also driven to apply for the role as the day-to-day focus is on one of the areas of geography that I am most interested in: flood risk and hydrology.
What inspired you to apply to Arcadis?
Arcadis had a very strong reputation and I felt the company values aligned with my personal values - especially the focus on sustainability.
What has been the single most important thing you've learned so far in your job?
The best way to solve problems is to stay calm and communicate well with others.
What is your role and how long have you been at Arcadis?
I have worked as a Graduate Consultant in the Flood Risk and Hydrology team for 2 years.
What would a ‘normal’ day look like for someone in your role?
My work is project-based so I have several projects on the go at a time. I manage my own workload and organise my time to ensure I meet project deadlines. I usually work on Flood Risk Assessments, Hydrology calculations, chapters for Environmental Impact Assessments and building computer models to simulate flooding. Although I am mostly office-based, I occasionally undertake site visits and attend training sessions in other offices which meant that I would be out of the office approximately once a month pre-lockdown.
What do you find most interesting with the sector/role you’re in?
I really enjoy seeing how the theory and skills I learned/gained from University can be applied in industry to solve real-world problems.
What is the Arcadis culture like?
Arcadis has a great people culture which has been emphasised during lockdown. People at Arcadis are always happy to lend a hand and get involved with initiatives such as charity days and fundraisers. It feels like the leadership team really cares about all employees at Arcadis.
How important is diversity to you and what is Arcadis doing in this space at the moment?
Diversity is very important to me. Arcadis is very welcoming and is addressing many different diversity elements through different streams. Personally, I am involved in the gender stream and I ran a session in the Cardiff office for International Women's Day earlier this year.
Finally, any tips for anyone who’d like to apply for a role at Arcadis?
Definitely apply! Take the time to really research the role and check that it is right for you. Also, take a look at the online information about Arcadis' values and make sure you weave these into your application.
Interested in what Arcadis have to offer? Find out more.