Megan Graduation Megan Graduation

Dougall Baillie Associates hail professional success of its engineering graduate apprentice Megan McGaw

Dougall Baillie Associates (DBA), the East Kilbride-based independent consulting engineer, has hailed the recent professional success of its graduate apprentice Megan McGaw.

Megan, now a valued member of the firm’s Structural Engineering team, joined Dougall Baillie Associates in 2018 for a work experience placement as part of her school studies at St Andrews and St Brides School in East Kilbride, after which she returned to school for sixth year to continue her studies and to consider her career options.

DBA director, Scott McPhail, takes up the story: “the following year we were delighted to hear that she had secured a place at university to study engineering via the traditional route.

“We asked her to come in for a chat where we discussed the alternative of her enrolling on the Graduate Apprenticeship (GA) scheme with us, in association with Strathclyde University. After some consideration, Megan chose to do so, and following four years of study secured a Bachelor of Engineering Honours degree, graduating in October 2023.

“During the four years she has been working within our business four days a week, plus one day set aside within the working week for study.

“As part of the GA process, she had been encouraged to complete her Institution of Civil Engineers’ (ICE) Initial and Continuing Professional Development records and, as a result she is now poised to apply for membership of ICE in June 2024.

“This timescale to professional qualification is significantly quicker than the traditional, university study route where, typically, an aspiring student would only now be starting on the concluding part of their journey.”

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Megan said: “I would highly recommend the Civil Engineering Graduate Apprenticeship. It allows you to gain professional work experience while advancing with your studies. I feel that this approach to study has definitely helped me successfully graduate with a 2:1.

“As a student coming straight from school, I found the support and advice from my colleagues invaluable, not only with the day to day work but with my studies too!

“Being the only female within Strathclyde’s first cohort of Civil Engineering GA course, I would definitely recommend anyone from all backgrounds to join if interested in this route.”

Added Scott, “overall, we think the GA process is preferable to the traditional route. From the trainee’s perspective, they earn a salary throughout while having the support, mentoring and practical guidance of an established company throughout their learning experience, and in effect, have already secured a permanent job on graduation.

“From a company perspective, the ability to have a graduate level employee who also has four years of company and project specific experience is invaluable.”

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