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Case Study:

Gemma Morrison

During my formative years at school I had several ideas regarding what career I would embark on once I had finished my studies. My first thoughts was working as a vet and helping animals this notion was soon eclipsed by a career in the art world as a painter when I mastered the technique of portrait, abstract and still life. When I left school at 18 with ‘A’ levels in Art, Information Communication and Technology, Graphic Design, General Studies and Religious Education I embarked on a degree course in Architecture at the London Metropolitan University.

Four years on and I decided I wanted a change of direction; it was at this time I thought about a career in Surveying. With this in mind I checked the job opportunities on the internet and saw an advertisement for a trainee position with Site Engineering Surveys Limited (SES), I applied for the position and attended an interview. During the interview I was impressed by the enthusiasm of the training manager regarding the world of surveying, during the interview it was made clear to me that as trainee I would receive on-site training given by senior surveyors this would be complimented with 6 blocks of study at Worcester College for the Introduction to Surveying Course over a two year period.

From day one my work has been interesting, varied and at times challenging. Two years on my work experiences has seen the successful completion of the course at Worcester College and on site training with dedicated Surveying staff of SES.

During my first 2 years with SES and with the support and encouragement of the Senior Surveyors I have learnt many survey techniques. My work experience has seen me work on various sites which have included; Prestigious Apartments in the West End of London and the Shard at London Bridge is a development I am working on at the moment and at the time of completion in scheduled for 2012 will be the tallest building in European Union at 306 metres; luckily I have never suffered from vertigo.

What I find exciting is being involved in the process of setting out on a new development or working on the rejuvenation of an historic site which I find very interesting to see a splendid building being brought back into use after it has suffered years of decline and appreciate the architecture of the 19th Century The Marshall Street Baths being one such site built in 1850 and after 25 years of closure it was a privilege to be involved in the restoration process and to see this building brought back into use.

Working outside in all types of weather has meant I quickly learned the importance of the correct type of clothing to cope with the conditions I found myself in.

The work brings me into contact with surveyors, engineers, contractors and consultants which all adds to the interest of the job.

The development of a successful career is dependent on the work based training and education through college/university courses, I have been fortunate to have had the opportunity to be assigned with good surveyors to learn surveying techniques.

The future holds more challenges with the progression of my career with more responsibility and more professional development.