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YEA Blog

#CIBSEYEA News 2022

Lucy Sherburn - CIBSE ASHRAE Graduate of the Year 2021 winner

I’m Lucy Sherburn, Graduate Engineer at FairHeat, and I recently won the CIBSE ASHRAE Graduate of the Year Award 2021. The CIBSE Young Engineers Awards recognise and reward the innovative thinking, hard work and skills of graduate engineers. 

Why did you enter the awards? 

I was nearly one year into my graduate scheme; I had settled into my new role and knew I wanted to get involved in the wider external industry. I was aware of the CIBSE Young Engineer Awards through previous shortlisted colleagues in my company, and thought it sounded like an exciting thing to get involved in. To be in with a chance of being shortlisted I knew I would need to not only be successful in my working role, but also be a great ambassador for the industry. So, I used the potential award submission as an opportunity get involved in the wider industry and push myself out of my comfort zone! In the year leading up to the award submission I jointed CIBSE YEPG, did university outreach, became a STEM Ambassador and lead on initiatives for women in the industry. 

How did #WeChampion webinars benefit your application? 

Prior to entering the awards, I often participated in the CIBSE #WeChampion webinars. The #WeChampion webinars are a series of webinars supported by the YEAs to showcase popular topics and thought-provoking content to assist with your applications. 

One of the most useful webinars I attended was the ‘Presentation Skills’ webinar, in which the judging panel of the awards provided their top tips and advice on how to give successful presentations. I then put my presentation together on the basis of the advice they gave, so this is definitely one to watch out for if you are applying for this year’s awards! 

What new and exciting projects are you working on? 

I work within the heat network industry, which is currently going through a really exciting and transformative period. As a result, my company FairHeat are undertaking lots of interesting projects across a wide range of new and proposed heat networks, as well as working on optimising existing networks. 

Some of the most exciting work I am doing at the moment is the design of a city wide district heating network, to serve residential and commercial buildings within a large UK city. This project will provide an accessible and cost-effective way for many existing buildings, colleges, and the university within the city to decarbonise their heat! 

Exciting opportunities since winning the YEAs 

Since winning the YEA’s I have had some amazing opportunities offered to me. The most obvious and most exciting one was the winner’s trip to the ASHRAE conference in Las Vegas, which was an incredible experience! 

I have also had the opportunity to attend the CIBSE Building Performance Awards, speak on various panels and webinars, and be invited to be part of an advisory board.
One of the most exciting opportunities I have had since winning the YEAs it to take part in the Stemazing inspiration academy, which is a programme that supports women in STEM to shine as visible role models and inspire young people. 

Why you should enter!

Regardless of whether you are shortlisted, I think it’s a really great opportunity to feel proud and showcase all your achievements in your education and career so far. And regardless of whether you win, reaching the finals provides you with an incredible experience, a platform to further achieve great things and an opportunity to meet some other phenomenal engineers in the industry!