Meet the Engineers: Nikki Kane
Johns Slater & Haward
Why did you choose Building services engineering?
I fell into building services. Even though my father is a building services engineer I didn't really find my engineering passion until I was 26 when I knew I wanted to work in the construction industry.
What were your favourite subjects at school?
I've always enjoyed maths and the sciences and was good at those subjects at school. When I realised I wanted to work in construction I decided to go back to college and I started an ONC. While I was there I looked more into engineering and started quizzing my dad on his profession, discovering the versatility and variation the profession brings. The penny dropped! This is what I want to do!
What was your route into Building services?
I was at college with someone who informed me of an opportunity with the company he worked for, which became my first engineering job. I worked at that company for 6 ½ years where I started a day release programme studying a BEng in Building Services Engineering at London Southbank University. The economic downturn presented me with an opportunity to move companies to a firm local to me, Johns Slater and Haward, in Ipswich. I have been with JSH for over 7 months now and they have supported me in completing my degree. I am continuing to develop my skills and aim to be chartered in 4 years.
Why do you think it is important to belong to CIBSE?
Being a part of CIBSE has helped me to grow and develop in my career. With excellent resources available and continuous development of these I find the member benefits very beneficial. I have made many valuable acquaintances and friends especially since becoming part of YEN. I have also gained experience as a committee member and in various office holders roles which will stand me in good stead for the future. JSH are very supportive of my involvement with CIBSE, which allows me to undertake the duties of my current roles as the Education Liaison Officer on our Regional Committee in East Anglia and also as the Chair of the East Anglian Young Engineers Network.
More recently I have enjoyed our involvement with STEMNET and have joined as an ambassador. I feel it is important to convey the opportunities in our industry to young people. When I was at school the option of being an engineer was never really prominent and I think by meeting young people at careers fairs and workshops we can change this, giving young people a wider variety of vocational choice.