- Course: MSc (Eng) Transport Planning and Engineering
- Year of graduation: 2014
- Nationality: Jordanian
- Job title: Senior Engineer - Highways Development
- Company: Leeds City Council
What have you been doing since finishing your studies?
After finishing my studies, I worked in the private consultancy sector for six years before moving to the public sector with Leeds City Council. I’m progressing well with my career and looking forward to what the future is holding for me in the Transport Planning and Engineering world.
What company are you working for, what is your role and what does it involve?
I’m a highways development engineer at Leeds City Council, dealing with various planning applications, new developments and highway schemes. My role is to ensure new developments/schemes are sustainable, accessible and safe for the general public. As a highways officer, the role involves technical review/approval of various transport reports, models and design schemes. I also work with planners, planning lawyers, politicians and decision-makers scrutinising new developments and highway schemes.
What experiences at Leeds do you think have particularly helped with your career?
Doing particular modules when I was studying definitely helped with my career path and heading towards something I’d enjoy. For instance, during the second semester I studied Traffic Management, Road Geometry and Infrastructure and Road Safety Management.
Looking back, why did you choose to study at the University of Leeds?
Coming from a Civil Engineering background, I thought transport planning and engineering was the most appropriate career path for me. I decided to specialise in transport engineering as there is a huge demand for it in the UK.
I applied to study at the University of Leeds because ITS is one of the leading transport institutions in the world. ITS opened many opportunities for me in the job market and broadened my academic knowledge. I’m sure you’ll hit the ground running after graduating from ITS, because they know the industry very well and will prepare you for it accordingly.
What was the best aspect of the course/the University and why?
The highlight for me was when we went to the Peak District National Park as part of a field trip. In terms of my studies, the employers visit week was very useful, and through it, I was offered my first job.
What other activities outside of your studies were you involved in?
Although writing the dissertation kept me busy throughout the summer, I spent some of my free time cycling around Leeds and York. I also did some local volunteering, such as laying out a new footpath for a church in Saltaire and helped clearing up Kirkstall Road after the December 2015 floods.
What would you say to students thinking about studying the same course at Leeds/thinking about the same career?
I would highly recommend studying in ITS. Not only they understand the challenges lying ahead in the transport planning and engineering industry, their reputation and connections across the world will help with your career progression and employability. This is thanks to their dedicated and hardworking staff and professors. If you’re unsure on which postgraduate course to study, I’d recommend attending the Postgraduate Open Day or contact ITS directly. They’re nice – I promise!
If you’ve decided to start a career in transport planning, modelling or engineering I think you’ve made a great decision. The climate emergency has accelerated the need for new technologies and sustainable transport solutions to decarbonise transport. There is a lot of demand for transport planners, not only in the UK, but also in many countries around the world.