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Roman Ghafarzada

Civil Engineering (BEng) BEng (Hons)

Roman completed an industrial work placement at global engineering and construction firm Skanska as part of his degree.

Tell me a little about your work placement at Skanska.

The 1&2 New Ludgate Project (in central London, which I worked on at Skanska) was a very challenging, ambitious programme. Our main objective as a team was to manage the progress of the construction and delivery of the project on time. I worked with the project team on the construction of the foundations and Slipform core. This included various tasks such as pile caps, pile cut of level, column heads, manhole, drainage system, basement slab, retaining walls etc.. My engineering management of the Slipform core demonstrated my ability to handle the additional responsibility requested by the project team.

What are your hopes for a future career?

First of all I would like to carry on studying, for my Masters degree either in structural engineering or construction management at City. I would like to become a chartered engineer after graduation. I hope to pursue my career as an engineer, where I can develop in the analysis, construction, design, management and supervision of structures such as commercial, residential, retail, leisure and educational projects. I would like to work hard to become a senior member within the construction industry. I finally hope to be the CEO of Skanska within the next 20 years or the Mayor of Kabul City in Afghanistan where my place of birth is.

What appeals to you most about this profession?

I have always been inspired by my surrounding environment such as houses, flats, roads, highways and tall buildings such as the Gherkin, Shard etc.. I always used to hear people talk about construction and was curious about it. As soon as I was old enough to realise what a rewarding industry construction was, it was definitely a career I wanted to pursue. I believe the most satisfying part working in construction industry is witnessing the fruits of your work and the work of your team as a whole. I have experienced this during my placement with Skanska. Nothing compares to the feeling when you point at a building and tell your friends and family that you were an important part of its construction.

What kind of qualities do you think you will need to succeed in this role?

Hard work, dedication and passion is the key to success in construction industry. I have developed some important skills whilst I was working as a placement student with Skanska dealing with structural engineers, architects and various other subcontractors. I was involved in construction of the 1&2 New Ludgate project which consisted of two multi-storeys (10 floors) located in central London. I was given the opportunity to take responsibility as site engineer for one New Ludgate. During this time I demonstrated my interpersonal skills with construction managers through overcoming various technical problems. My record keeping, clear communication and awareness of engineering issues on site helped me gain the trust of my colleagues.

How has City helped you towards achieving this goal?

Civil engineering at City University was hard work. You have to be very motivated and passionate about the course otherwise it’s very hard to cope with. The course lecturers were invaluable -with their industrial experience, they taught us in the same way one would be taught within the construction industry. 

What are your hopes for a future career?

After I complete my Bachelors', I would like to continue on with a Masters' degree either in Structural Engineering or Construction Management at City University. I have a deep passion for structural analysis, design and construction management, therefore I hope to pursue a career as an engineer whereby I can develop skills such as analysis, construction, design, management and supervision of structures such as commercial, residential, retail, leisure and educational projects. I finally hope to be the chief executive officer (CEO) of Skanska within the next 20 years of my career in construction industry or the Mayor of Kabul City in Afghanistan - my place of birth.