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Case Study:

James Pike

When leaving school, I had a keen interest in Computing, so I ventured on to college to study a BTEC National Diploma in Computing & Networking. Initially the prospect of working in IT was engaging. After completing the two year course, the thought of working in an office environment day to day seemed a little tedious unchallenging. A career was required that could provide me with ample opportunity to see new environments and test my abilities.

The process of becoming an Assistant Surveyor was very sudden, as I had heard about the job opportunity the day before interviews were taking place. A spontaneous decision was made to apply and attend the interview to see how things progressed. Initially I had very little knowledge of what the job title ‘Assistant Surveyor’ implied, yet it sounded intriguing and challenging.

The interview was very engaging, aiding to heighten my interest in attempting this new career path.

Having passed the job interview and being invited to join the Severn Partnership in late 2005, I began my job as an Assistant Surveyor, providing support as part of a Survey team. This involved helping to set up Tripods, installing control and even some instrument work. This actively involves you in the thought processes concerning surveying, creating an insightful opportunity to understand the workings and disciplines of the job.

Surveying has given me the opportunity to travel around the country, seeing all kinds of different environments. Having worked on Heritage sites on old historic buildings, surveying rivers, reservoirs, structures, roads, railways, factories, golf courses and even confined spaces such as tunnels, it is a career with ample variety, making sure no day is the same. Office work is also incorporated into the job, as the data has to be processed, creating time for working with Design Software. This can appealing to people who are interested in working with computer software, yet don’t want to be confined to an office every day of the week.

Surveying as a career gives you a chance to liaise and work with people from all kinds of career paths, giving you an understanding of their roles as part of team to achieve the overall task set for each individual job. This makes you think extensively about the job required as a whole, rather than on one particular task, as required by some other careers.

Having worked as an assistant for one and a half years it was felt I had a good enough understanding to progress onto the role of Surveyor In Training. This brought more responsibilities and provided me with the ability to undertake my own surveys. Being more engaged in each individual job requires you to think on your feet and show initiative making the process more interesting and less of a set task to complete.

Finally, I made the decision to participate in the Introduction To Surveying course, in order to further my climb into Surveying. The course consisted of six blocks, each two weeks long, over the period of two years. Studying part time was the best direction for me, as it enabled me to continue my career at the same time as progressing towards my qualification.

Having participated and completed the course, achieving Distinction & Best Student, I was delighted with my achievement.

The course is very insightful and provides technical knowledge into the practice of surveying, covering a variety of different subjects that are each applicable to the different fields of the surveying profession. Having now achieved a Surveyor Grade 1 position, my next step is to eventually work towards achieving technical membership (TCInstCES) by more formal training within the company I work for.