YTP Committee Elections FY22/23

As we continue to grow and expand our network across Australia, it’s important that the Committee is able to represent YTP’s members in the best possible way. As such, we would like to use this opportunity to call for volunteers to be a part of the 2022/2023 YTP Committee.

New committee members bring a fresh perspective, offering young professionals boundless opportunities to meet like-minded people and develop new skills. Being a part of the Committee is also a great way to make your mark on the industry, as you will be responsible for the direction and future of YTP and its activities.

All committee positions are now declared vacant and members are invited to nominate themselves, or another member, for a position.

Please refer to the Committee Roles & Responsibilities and Terms of Reference for more information. You can also contact the current YTP committee with any questions at contact@youngtransportpro.com.


Process for the upcoming election:

Step 1: Read the Committee Roles & Responsibilities and Terms of Reference.

Step 2: Fill out the application form with your nominated committee position(s). You may select up to two roles. Please attach a brief summary of why you/your nominee would be suitable for the committee position(s). Please note that this information will be distributed to all YTP members. Nominations close on Wednesday 5th October 2022.

Step 3: Voting will open to YTP members on Friday 7th October 2022, and remain open until the close of business on Wednesday 13th October 2022.

Step 4: The new committee will be announced at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Thursday 3rd November 2022. Please note that attendance at the AGM is mandatory for new committee members.


2022 Annual General Meeting

The upcoming Annual General Meeting of Young Transport Professionals Inc. will take place on Thursday 3rd November 2022. All members are welcome to attend, with registration opening via Eventbrite on Wednesday 19th October 2022.

Managing Railway Network Disruptions

For Rail Safety Week, Young Transport Professionals collaborated with Metro Trains Melbourne to present a two-part series on Managing Railway Network Disruptions with Metro Control Centre (Metrol). This event was inspired by the Rail Safety Week agenda of encouraging everyone to be aware and alert on and around the rail network. 

This event series was facilitated by Gary Wegert, Kuldip Johal, Claudia Gemes, Travis Fitzpatrick, Lindsay Underwood, Conor Beddoe and a special appearance from Catherine Baxter for the lunch and learn event.  

Part one, the lunch and learn event provided a unique opportunity for attendees to learn about the interconnections of Metrol to the rest of the railway network and emergency services to support any type of disruption across the metropolitan railway network. The facilitators highlighted the skills required to be part of Metrol and the various tools available to support any railway incident situations. The event provided a Q&A segment to allow the attendees to engage with the facilitators and query their experience and get clarification on the complex nature of Metrol.  

Part two, the interactive workshop event provided an opportunity for the attendees to ‘firefight’ a network disruption as “Senior Network Controllers” of Metrol. The facilitators provided network diagrams and prompts to the groups to assist them with thinking about all the different aspects of the railway disruption, how to utilise Metrol staff, emergency services and tools available to them to resolve the disruption and most importantly ensure that passenger safety was the highest priority. 

The evening concluded with professional networking, where the attendees and facilitators continued the discussion and connected with like-minded young professionals outside their organisation.  

Young Transport Professionals would like to thank our Industry Partners, Subject Matter Experts, Venues and participants for making this an informative and fun event.

President’s Address – July 2022

Hi everyone and welcome to another edition of YTP’s quarterly newsletter. I hope you enjoyed learning more about YTP, our Committee members and the wide world of transport and are looking forward to another update! As always, On behalf of the committee, I would like to thank our industry partners, the Aurecon Jacobs and Mott MacDonald Joint Venture, the Victorian Department of Transport (DoT) and Metro Trains Melbourne, for their continued support. 

A reminder that the committee is planning a Lunch & Learn Virtual Presentation for the 8th August on Managing Railway Network Disruptions and is will be a rare opportunity to hear from leaders directly on the front line managing the operations of a Metropolitan Rail Network. As always, YTP events are free to attend and encourage you to sign up here. 

It was fantastic to hear from the emerging leaders in the industry and their ideas for inter-model transport connections on a cold Autumn evening at the first of our interactive workshops on Shaping Transport Superhubs. Check out this quarter’s events recap to read more about the evening. On behalf of the committee, special thanks to the members, facilitators in attendance and our industry partners for making it all possible.  

For this quarter’s ‘A Day in the life of’ interview, the committee caught up with Simon Osborne from Department of Transport in Victoria and gain some insight into the day in the life of an Engineering Manager leading the Next Generation Trams (NGT) Project. 

Also in this edition, in celebration of International Women in Engineering Day this month, the committee’s very own, Caitlin and Evelyn reflect on their current journey in Engineering. Special thanks to Caitlin and Evelyn for their time in providing their experiences in engineering and transport and advice for the next generation of females coming through and considering a future in engineering and transport. 

Finally, I thank our members for their continued support of YTP as without your engagement, we cannot do what we do. Our inbox is always open, so please get in touch if you have any suggestions on how we can improve articles or if you would like to contribute. Happy reading!  

A Day in the Life Of – Simon Osbourne – Mechanical Engineering Manager, Department of Transport

1 Who are you and what is your role, what is the project that you are working on? 

Simon Osborne – Mechanical Engineering Manager – Next Generation Trams Project 

The Next Generation Trams (NGT) Project is a $1.86B investment by the Victorian State Government to procure 100 low-floor, improved accessibility, safe and reliable trams to the Melbourne Tram Network. 

As part of the delivery of these vehicles, a new Tram Maintenance Facility will be built, the supply of NGT simulators, mock-up, and integrated ICT solution will be delivered. 

2. What does a typical day working at RSD look like for you? 

A lot of my work in the NGT Project (at this point in the project) is office-based work. Typically, a working day will involve coming into work, chatting with the team about tasks ahead for the day, review work of design review packages, management plans, hazard logs, FMECA calculations, and working directly with the rolling stock contractor to ensure that the State’s objectives and requirements are met. 

When the project moves into manufacturing and type testing phases, I will spend a lot more time directly with the supplier at their manufacturing facilities to verify manufacturing activities and processes, witness type tests, and undertake final inspections in preparation for passenger service. 

When we get to testing phase, it usually involves a lot of overnight (or “after-last, before-first service”) testing to verify and validate supplier design and products. We’ll be very busy while everyone is asleep! 

3. How did you get started in Transport and what is your favourite thing about working here? 

I started my career in freight rail and rolling stock. I was lucky enough to be involved with the actual design of wagons and locomotives, from design, manufacturing, and testing and commissioning. This involved producing many calculations, models and simulations to ensure that the products were compliant with the client’s (and State’s) standards and requirements. I got to develop a good understanding of design principles, methods and troubleshooting techniques as part of my time in this space. 

I moved into the public transport space by working on the E Class Tram Procurement Project with Yarra Trams to help address accreditation items, implement the refinements and enhancements programs (this included the E2 cab – take a look at the E Class numbers 6001-6050 and 6051-6100, these tram numbers have a different cab design!).  

More recently I was in the team responsible for delivering the High Capacity Metro Trains (HCMT) Project for Melbourne, developing the X’Trapolis 2.0 specification, and I’ve also done work on the Queensland New Generation Rollingstock Project and the Regional Rail Project for Sydney.  

My favourite thing about working in my current role is working within a highly complex project space (which involves many objective and subjective interfaces) to deliver outcomes that will be of direct benefit to the public, indiscriminately. It’s a pleasure to work in our team which have a primary focus to deliver these outcomes for the public.  

More broadly, my favourite part about the public transport industry on projects is that it provides accessible transport to connect people from their homes and other places to places of work, health care, friends, and family every day. To me, there’s nothing more fulfilling both personally and professionally. 

4. How have you seen young people uniquely contribute to the projects that you have worked on? 

Absolutely. Experience is relative. New cohorts coming into the industry are highly technically capable and competent who continually offer out-of-the-square thinking and different ways of problem solving to old and legacy problems. The fresh perspectives drive better outcomes for projects and the industry as a whole. 

When I was in university and starting my career, we were undertaking hand notes in lectures and mostly attending in person. Only a few subjects offered online interfacing. We had online quizzes and access to lecture notes and stuff, but not to the extent offered now.  

I’d argue technology and access to information quickly continually makes us collectively more efficient.  

Additionally, it is refreshing to see so many well-rounded individuals who offer a variety of skills to solve and complete the tasks at hand. 

5. Looking back what advice do you have for graduates or young transport professionals getting started in their career? 

The shift from tertiary education to the workforce can be hard. The updraft of experience and learning is steep and sometimes daunting. However, transport it is a wonderful journey to be on given the direct benefit that people experience because of it. Here are some of the things I’ve learned on my journey so far and implore others to do:  

  • Find mentors – it might sound a bit tacky and a bit ‘mechanical’, but acquiring great mentors is a key factor for strong personal development, in my opinion. Mentors and mentorship shouldn’t be constrained to any method or type either. You could have one mentor or many: from executive management to the shop floor. Seek their wisdom and advice. You’ll be surprised how many people are willing to pass on their stories and experiences to help you along your way with your career. Often, it’s a mutually beneficial experience! 

Mentoring doesn’t just stop after just joining the industry – find mentors who can support you along your journey. I have at least five mentors who I catch up with on a regular basis who have helped me to define my own path in the industry – they are also great friends as well! 

  • Immerse yourself into everything – when you’re new to the industry, everything you do is likely to be a discovery; something that you experience and take with you through your career. It’s how wisdom is developed. Given this, where the opportunity arises, take your chance to seize every experience that is presented to you.  
  • Build your network – your professional network is like a living organism. We all strive to help each other and in return seek help from it, at times. You can build your network by working with others, attending network building events (such as the YTP events!), and through other general stakeholder engagements. Often, you will find that you will make great friendships which just makes the process more fun! 

However, it takes time to build and requires effort and time to nurture. At the end of the day, we are all people working with other people for the common interest of clients, customers, and in terms of government, the public. As a great mentor once told me: be flexible, be adaptable, and be cheerful in your approach to work and working with others. 

  • Reflect and self-evaluate – this is key to continuous improvement. We aren’t perfect, nor are we robots. We all have the capacity to reflect and learn from our experiences to do or be better the next time we find ourselves in similar situations. Reflect often. Ask yourself “is there a better way I could have handled that situation?” or “what could I do better next time to ensure the best outcomes?”. 

Seek feedback from others actively – sometimes hearing critique is a bit hard at times as we all try hard to do the best we can for the best result! But in my opinion, we are better off for the feedback. 

6. What do you do outside of work to relax and have fun? 

I like to keep Bunnings Warehouse in business…. I enjoy home improvement and working with my hands. 

A beer on Friday at the pub doesn’t go astray either…  

ImaginetheFuture – INWED 22

In celebration of International Women in Engineering Day, Young Transport Professionals (YTP) is proud to celebrate the contribution of current/future female leaders to not only the current YTP committee but to shaping the future of engineering and the transport industry. This year’s theme is #ImaginetheFuture, with a focus on Inventors and Innovations.

Introducing Evelyn Tao…

Evelyn completed a Master of Engineering (Civil) at UoM and is currently a Project Officer in Rolling Stock Development at the Department of Transport having joined the organisation in 2020. The role involves working with rolling stock subject matter experts, suppliers and Franchisee to support the delivery of new rolling stock, major refurbishments and upgrades, with a strong focus on supporting local jobs and industry.

Introducing Caitlin Skinner… 

Caitlin completed a Bachelor of Civil Engineering at the Swinburne University of Technology and since 2020 has been partnered with AECOM working as a Rail Engineer in the Track and Civil team. By working on projects such as the Rail Infrastructure Alliance and the Warrnambool Line Upgrade, she has gained in-depth experience in track and formation design and associated civil infrastructure, as well as cable containment design.

Question 1: Why did you decide to study engineering?

Evelyn – I was curious about how things worked and engineering was a really good fit. I like the process of thinking about a problem, exploring multiple options and coming up with a solution that benefits the user. I have really enjoyed my journey in engineering, I feel inspired by different engineering solutions, designs and the amazing engineers I work with every day. Regardless of how much time I spend in engineering, it is a continual learning experience.

Caitlin – Two words – Maths and Physics. As hard as it is to believe, both were my favourite subjects in school. I had a fascination with discovering how things worked and applying rules resulting in quantifiable solutions. Little did I know at the time, that this is the definition of engineering.

Having worked in transport since graduating, I can safely say that the learning never ends (and this is the best bit!) By continuously challenging myself to question and think differently, I am provided with an endless opportunity to change the world for the better.

Question 2 – What is the most interesting project you have worked on?

Evelyn – The two projects I have been working on are both very interesting projects – High Capacity Metro Trains (HCMT) and Next Generation Trams (NGT). I joined the HCMT project at the delivery phase, it was interesting to see how our trains go through comprehensive testing before entering service, as well as how problems and technical issues get tackled through the journey. When I joined NGT, it was at the early stages of planning and now the contract was signed for the largest tram order in Australia’s history. I can’t wait to see the new trams to run on the network that provides a more accessible and sustainable journey for passengers.

Caitlin – For me, I find the most interesting projects are based on their overall purpose, that is, what we’re trying to achieve and how it is achieved. The Metro Tunnel and Geelong Fast Rail are two very interesting projects that I’ve been fortunate enough to work on/are working on.

Both projects have the capacity to change the way people move and create new and improved connections within Victoria’s transport network. How are they achieving this? Well, from a technical perspective, delivering the best outcome requires the adoption of new ideas and technologies. My role has been in the technical aspects of the design, however, never losing focus on the bigger picture – facilitating safe and sustainable movements for users.

Question 3 – How have you found being a woman in engineering?

Evelyn – I can see the growing presence of women in engineering these days! I really enjoyed being a woman engineer as I can solve problems and make things happen just like many others in the industry. The industry is much more female-friendly as I can feel the general respect and willingness to support gender equality from many people. And I’m fairly confident that the working environment will become more and more welcoming to all female engineers.

Caitlin – Diversity in engineering is a trend that is here to stay! Even over the course of the two years that I have been in the industry, I have seen greater uptake of women in engineering roles, although there is still room for improvement. My experience has been a positive one, and if you enjoy questioning how things work and designing things, then the opportunities are endless regardless of gender!

Question 4 – What would be your best piece of advice for a female considering a career in engineering? 

Evelyn – Be confident and believe in yourselves, step out of your comfort zone and continue taking on the challenges, never estimate the power of mentors and develop as many skills as possible.

If you are interested in engineering and wanted to make a change, it is the time for you to join as a woman in engineering and pursue the career. There is high demand for engineering professionals in multiple disciplines, together we can break stereotypes and show the others what we can achieve, no matter our genders.

Caitlin – First and foremost I would say go for it! Engineering captures such a broad range of careers in various roles, sectors, projects and organisations. Reach out to professionals on LinkedIn, participate in mentoring programs or do your own research to understand what interests you. The industry needs a diverse range of people to support growth and this can only be strengthened by diversity. You have the potential to change the world.

Secondly, I received this advice on my first day at AECOM “There is no such thing as a stupid question…unless you ask it twice”. Asking questions is a part of the job description, and in my experience, people are more than willing to help you – unless you ask it twice.

 

#INWED22 #ImaginetheFuture

YTP 8th Annual Barefoot Bowls

Disclaimer: No lawn bowls were injured during the course of this event.

Young Transport hosted its 8th Annual Barefoot Bowls Event on Thursday 3 March, and it was a great night of networking and healthy competition.

After beginning the night with conversations, cold drinks and pizza, the barefoot bowls commenced. With a crash course on the rules and teams settled, everyone was ready to let the good times “bowl”.

Young Transport Professionals would like to thank everyone who attended the event. We look forward to seeing everyone at the next event – stay tuned!

2022 Monash Institute of Railway Technology Annual Lecture in Railway Engineering

The YTP Committee had the pleasure of attending the annual Monash Institute of Railway Technology (IRT) Dr Stephen Marich lecture last week. It was a pleasure to meet up with others in the rail industry and hear from Distinguished Professor Buddhima Indraratna about some of the key geotechnical challenges and considerations in the design of track structures in the Australian #rail network.

It was a fascinating event with some key takeaways from the lecture for us including:

– The effect of train speed on the degradation of track structure – The deviation and deterioration of track substructure material properties during operations from what was designed

– Increased axial loads of heavy haul increasing the fluidisation of mud leading to settlement – mud pumping

– Role of coal on ballast fouling and impeding on track drainage

Get to know the YTP Committee – Tushar Sen

Get to know a little more about YTP Treasurer Tushar Sen.

Question 1 – How long have you been involved with Young Transport Professionals? 

I first came to know about YTP through one of their networking events organised just when I was out of Uni in 2019. I finally mustered the courage to nominate myself for the committee board in 2021 and have been contributing as a treasurer for the team.

Question 2 – What is the most exciting project you have worked on?

I have been working in the major transport industry for the past 3 years now since finishing my master’s in 2019. I have been working with RPV for almost 3 years on the Melbourne Airport Rail. It is the largest single project I have worked on.

Question 3 – What have you enjoyed the most about being on the Young Transport Professionals Committee?

YTP gives me the opportunity to connect with professionals of similar experience in the same sector and learn about the latest trends and project developments being undertaken in Australia.  Being on the YTP committee has allowed me to better my skills when I interact with other working professionals in the transport/infrastructure industry. But the learning has gone both ways, I have learnt being part of the committee and the group how to improve my communication skills, on keeping up with the latest techniques and practices followed in other consultancies and company and bring it back to my organisation and create a synergy of data and practices between YTP and my organisation.

Question 4 – What do you do outside of work to relax and have fun?  

I like socialising on the weekend and exploring new towns around Victoria. During the weekdays, I go for a run in the morning along the Yarra River and spend my late evenings at the gym doing strength training. I have recently picked up an interest in ancient mythology and have been reading Mahabharat which comes from my own culture.

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Three Women, Three Careers, Three Questions: Rachel Harding

Introducing Rachel Harding… 

Rachel is a Technical Director at AECOM. She is a Fellow Chartered Practicing Engineer for leadership and management, who has led and managed major projects, environmental impact assessments, environmental management and approvals, and risk assessments over the past 20 years across a diverse range of sectors including rail, mining, oil and gas, and industrial facilities.

Question 1: What would you say has been your greatest professional achievement?  

A few years ago I took on the role of Project Manager for the design team on Rail Infrastructure Alliance (a $1-2B construction job), which forms part of the Metro Tunnel Project. 

My biggest achievement was turning around the design program from 45 packages behind schedule to 6 packages ahead.  This was through a focus on design team culture, intentional listening and a ‘no surprises’ approach to design package delivery. 

Question 2: What would be your best piece of advice for a female considering joining the transport industry?  

It’s okay to fail! 

This is my advice to anyone, but it is more relevant to women as I think we worry more about the ‘what ifs’ in life (i.e. What if I make a mistake? What if I’m not ‘good’ enough? What if I’m not selected? What do others think about me?). 

So don’t be afraid to jump in, try new things, listen and learn, back yourself, and pick yourself up off the ground when you make mistakes and learn from them.  Repeat.   

It’s the best way to learn and grow and take joy in what you do.   

Question 3: Is there anything you would change about the transport industry, and why have you decided to stick around?  

I am new to the transport sector, and was attracted by the transformational, city-shaping projects on the go!  It is an exciting time to be involved.  

If I could change anything it would be the diversity of the workforce.  This is still a work in progress! 
As we move towards more diverse teams (gender, qualifications, background, experiences), we will see more supportive and high-performing teams delivering creative, outcome-focused solutions to transport.   

 

Three Women, Three Careers, Three Questions: Georgina Mahony

Introducing Georgina Mahony… 

Georgina is a founding Director of Ediom with over 20 years of experience in the delivery of major infrastructure projects including rail, roads, water treatment and airports. She specialises in Design and Engineering Management of integrated teams for large multi-discipline transport projects having lead teams of up to 250 people. She places a heavy emphasis on forming collaborative teams that foster a positive team culture whilst simultaneously driving value and delivery outcomes. Georgina has recently received the 2021 NAWIC Victoria Award for Outstanding Achievement as a Businesswoman. Projects include EastLink, Regional Rail, Komo Airport and Level Crossing Removal Programs.

 Question 1: What would you say has been your greatest professional achievement?  

Whilst it seems a very cliché answer, I’m not sure I have just one! I am proud of a range of achievements in my career based on my experience and role at the time. On reflection, moments I am most proud of tend to involve navigating challenge or change.  Leading teams from 2 to 250 people to deliver outcomes has been incredibly rewarding as has the delivery of technically complex projects in rail, roads and aviation. If I had to name one, it would be starting Ediom three years ago as it ties together all aspects of what drives me and it has been very satisfying (and terrifying!) to build something from the ground up.

Question 2:  What would be your best piece of advice for a female considering joining the transport industry?  

You’ll love it! And the reason I can say that with confidence is there is no single defined career path in the transport industry, hence there really is something for everybody. Take the opportunity to learn more about the various roles, sectors, projects and organisations – nothing works as well as talking to people who work in transport to understand what is out there and what might work for you. In my experience, people are incredibly generous with their time and more than willing to connect you to others.  

Question 3:  Is there anything you would change about the transport industry, and why have you decided to stick around?  

A few years ago, I was giving a small presentation and I was asked why I like what I do. I responded with some general words about problem-solving and working with people etc before a very wise woman (who was well over 80!) stopped me and suggested that ultimately, I like it because my work allows me to feel I am reaching my full potential.  These very savvy words best sum up why I stick around. I do love problem solving and working with teams in a very dynamic environment but ultimately I love that I am constantly learning from incredibly smart people around me and hopefully able to add value back to others with my own experiences.  

In terms of change, I would love to see growth in diversity of thought at the leadership level in transport projects whether that be background, ethnicity, skills, gender or age. This should in turn lead to different ways of tackling problems and attracting more women and men from across society into the industry. As an engineer, one of the reasons I started Ediom was to try to change the way engineers communicate technical issues to stakeholders to drive solutions that consider compliance, people, systems, legacy and value more effectively.