A century of achievement 1913 - 2013
Faculty of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences
 
 

Faculty of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences

Kathy Thomas

 
Kathy Thomas
Environmental Engineering

Graduate Project Engineer - Geotech Pty Ltd

I loved the opportunity to become involved in real life projects, such as developing a water management strategy for saline intrusion in Geraldton.  

My real passion for engineering came about when we did a project on constructing a sanitary system in Cambodia that not only provided sanitation to a community that was susceptible to water borne diseases, but also converted the waste into energy. Seeing that the skills I developed could make a combined environmental and economic benefit is what really excites me about engineering.

At UWA there is a focus on group projects and presentation skills which sets UWA graduates apart from other graduates with their confidence and professionalism in presentation. I loved the opportunity to become involved in real life projects, such as developing a water mangament strategy for saline intrusion in Geraldton. This was a real project that a consultant in Subiaco was working on concurrently. Being able to see how the skills we develop throughout the course can be applied in real world situations is incredibly rewarding.

I loved studying at UWA, and was able to become strongly involved with extra-curricular activities such as being on the Solid Gold committee, volunteering with Uni Camp for Kids, and helping organise events for the Student Environmental Engineering Club. The learning environment at UWA was incredibly supportive, with students all eager to learn and achieve, but with a real sense of community.

I developed a strong passion for wastewater engineering throughout my studies, as it is a field that requires problem solving using physical, biological and chemical processes, with solutions varying depending on the quality, quantity, cost, and available materials. Due to this passion, I completed my final year thesis on a sustainable alternative to wastewater treatment, and have subsequently was awarded a  finalist position in the Undergraduate Water Prize of 2013, awarded a scholarship for Water Engineering from the National Committee of Water Engineering, and  the Water Corporation award for Waste water Engineering.

In my new role as a Graduate Project Engineer with Geotech Pty Ltd, a Melbourne-based environmental and geotechnical consultancy, I’m really excited to become involved in a range of projects, from wastewater systems and dams, to rails, and basements.