What inspired you to become a structural engineer?
Both my father and brother are engineers, so I was always drawn to STEM subjects. I’m fascinated by architecture and love to “look up” when I’m exploring new towns and cities. My passion evolved in seeking to create structures and understand how they work. It was my dream to pass by a building on the street and be able to say “I designed this!”
Structural engineering is one of the most rewarding professions, as you can see the product of your hard work and be proud of it.
It is important to have a role model who inspires you, someone who not only sets an example, but also supports you and encourages you to pursue your dreams. I’ve been incredibly lucky to have had such a team leader for the past couple of years and can honestly say that he has inspired me to dream big, as I uncover the endless possibilities of the profession.
What are the greatest achievements in your career?
I’ve been involved in various projects throughout my career, from small house refurbishments to large scale developments. The success of every one of these projects has been a great achievement.
Since I began working with the AECOM Sports team I’ve participated in the design of some exceptional structures. One of the projects I’m particularly proud of is the Japoma Sports Complex in Douala, Cameroon.
The compound consists of a 50,000-seat multi-sports stadium, an aquatics centre with an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a 2,000 -seat multi-sports hall, outdoor training facilities and infrastructure.
Another highlight is my participation in the Architecture in Schools programme organised by Open City. As part of this initiative, I got to share my passion for structural engineering with primary school pupils. Together we explored the concept of scale, materials and transferring ideas from 2D sketches into 3D models. This was a rewarding experience, as I got to help the students shape their ideas and bring them to life.
I believe that such programmes are on of the best tools we have to promote the profession and to inspire the next generation of engineers, and I am proud to have been part of it.
Ioana (third from left) using virtual reality in the office.