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WGU ten years

Rhys Vaughan Williams

HND and B.Eng in Electrical and Electronic Engineering

I joined Glyndwr as a mature student and a fully qualified Electrician, so I was effectively already in the “World of Work”.  I continued to work as an Electrician, evenings and weekends to support my family. I graduated in 1996

I am responsible for the Electrical, Mechanical, Public Health, Fire, Acoustic and Lift & Escalators Engineering on Europe’s largest construction project (Crossrail).  This involves leading a team of nearly 100 Engineers.

My career highlights to date are being appointed Head of MEP on Crossrail Ltd. Receiving a Fellowship from the Institute of Engineering and Technology.  Receiving a Fellowship from the Institute of Mechanical Engineering and being appointed Visiting Professor to Wrexham Glyndwr University.

My current role as Head of MEP on Crossrail Ltd which is a £14.8bn major infrastructure program to construct a new railway system for London and the SouthEast. It will deliver a worldclass, affordable railway, with a high frequency and accessible train service across the capital from 2019. My role as Head of MEP Engineering whilst acting as Chief Engineer for MEP related issues is to provide Technical Authority and Professional Leadership for all the Mechanical, Electrical and Public Health aspects on the Project. This includes Lifts and Escalators, Tunnel Ventilation and Fire Safety.

The current budget value of which I have direct responsibility is in excess of £500M and an annual staff budget of circa £4M for the central section, this includes ensuring consistency of approach and excellence of design, along with providing the appropriate professional resources during the design development and construction phases.

I have developed a structure within the Technical Directorate masterminding a fully integrated team involving the end user at a very early stage, reducing risk at handover of this completed project. This structure also includes the setting up of a Centre of Technical Excellence, by bringing together some 30 of the leading Technical Engineers from the senior consultancies within London. This provides a platform to ensure our “right first time” philosophy is maintained and is the driving force behind our consistency and simplicity strategy, enabling future maintenance to be conducted quickly, efficiently and safely, reducing the overall down time of the railway and improving the whole life cost of the railway considerably.

I chose to study at Wrexham Glyndwr University as it was local to my home and convenient for me to commute every day to undertake my studies fulltime. Studying at Wrexham Glyndwr University gave me the stepping stone to become a Chartered Engineer, which was the first step on my current career path.

My advice to someone thinking of working in a similar field would be to put everything you can into your studying. Some of the subjects may seem pointless at the time, but they will all develop you for later life. Understand that every day is a school day, be it in University or work.

I would certainly recommend undertaking a course with Wrexham Glyndwr University.During my time at the University I was able to speak to my tutors one to one, the campus was small enough that the lecturers were close to their students to really care about them, treating everyone as an individual.

There are many favourite memories of my time at Glyndwr but the one that makes me smile the most was being able to involve my new born twins to test the precursor to the baby monitor for checking for sleep apnoea.

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