- What We Do
International Women’s Day is a day to celebrate the social, economic and cultural contributions of women around the world. At Barker, we have an extensive, and growing, team of fantastic women. We’re proud to support and uplift them in their career development every day, but today we wanted to share one of their stories.
Caitlin Stuart is one of our Electric Engineers and joined Barker in December 2021. She studied Building Services Engineering at London South Bank University, where she achieved Incorporated Engineer (IEng) status. Read on to learn more about Caitlin’s journey to becoming an engineer at Barker.
Tell us a bit about what you do at Barker?
As an electrical engineer, my main role is to review, advise and design electrical systems within a building – predominantly in the education sector. This includes schematics, lighting, power, fire alarms, and security. Since joining Barker, I’ve been heavily involved with lots of decarbonisation projects. Within these projects, we investigate how to reduce the energy consumption over a building’s life cycle. We then put a plan in place to make sure these recommendations can become a reality within the client’s budget and energy goals. Aside from decarbonisation, I’m also involved in refurbishment works of several projects. These refurbishments range from a few changes to the lighting to a full redesign!
What is your professional background – how did you get into electrical engineering?
I started studying engineering at Sixth Form and absolutely loved it. My dad is an electrical engineer, so I think that’s where the interest came from! I then started working for a company in London as a building services engineer apprentice. I finished my degree apprenticeship and went on to complete my ACIBSE IEng. In 2015 I won the WISE (Women in Science and Engineering apprentice of the year, awarded by HRH Princess Anne… This was an amazing achievement and not only boosted my confidence as an engineer but encouraged me to become an ambassador for WISE to help younger girls achieve a career in STEM subjects. Over my career I’ve worked on some pretty incredible projects, such as the apartments at the Shard and Coutts Bank. I’m now getting ready to start the process of becoming chartered with the support of Barker!
“A career in a STEM subject is incredibly rewarding and no two projects are the same.”
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I think I enjoy the variety of my job. One day I can be out on a building site, the next I’ll be in the office creating designs. I also like seeing the complete progression of a project. When you’ve been working on a project since the beginning stages … Seeing it complete with your design come to life really is a surreal feeling.
What is your top tip for women thinking about joining the industry?
Go for it! Never be afraid to ask questions, get involved and ‘break the mould’. As a ‘pro tip’ I’d suggest signing up to career talks, WISE conferences and speak to other women in the industry – they will ALWAYS want to help.
Thank you, Caitlin for telling us your story.
We’d like to wish a very happy International Women’s Day to all the fantastic women working at Barker, across the property and construction sector and beyond!