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All power to top female surveyor

Unitec graduate Megan Smith has her stepfather to thank for setting her on the path to nomination in the prestigious ‘UK Young Surveyor of the Year Awards’, staged by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

The awards recognise the most inspiring and influential surveyors – aged 35 or under – in the UK.

Megan’s stepfather is a quantity surveyor and suggested it would be a good career path for her – so she investigated study options and chose Unitec’s Bachelor of Construction. Following her graduation in 2014, Megan worked in Australia and New Zealand before packing her bags for the ultimate Kiwi rite of passage – living in London.

Now an Executive Surveyor with London-based surveying firm Gardiner & Theobald, she’s working on the multi-billion pound Battersea Power Station Phase 2 Project, widely considered to be the largest construction project in the UK. “The project itself is fascinating. It involves refurbishing London’s famous former power station into a high-end destination boasting a cinema, event space, apartment living and the future London headquarters of Apple,” said Megan. “With cost control on a refurbishment always a true challenge, imagine having to refurbish a building made up of over seven million bricks.”

Megan made it to the awards shortlist from a record number of nominations, but she remains humble about her selection. “I’ll admit it does feel a bit like an ‘underdog story’ – some of the candidates have been working in the UK for well over ten years and carry more impressive titles, and even founded their own firms.

Saying that, I’m proud of my achievements, and it’s an honour to be recognised on the shortlist.” Paul Jeurissen, Head of Unitec’s School of Building Construction, said he was delighted to see how her career has progressed. “Megan is an incredible role model for women in construction.”


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