Published: 20 October 2016

A celebration of structural engineering

The University’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Max Lu welcomed alumni, students and industry partners to the 2016 Civil Engineering Lecture which this year not only marked Surrey’s 50th anniversary but also celebrated half a century of the MSc in Structural Engineering.

Guest speaker Emeritus Professor Hoshyar Nooshin, who played an integral role in the development of the masters programme, highlighted its history from its 1965 launch at the Battersea College of Advanced Technology through to the present day.

The keynote lecture, entitled ‘A Systems Approach to Value-Driven Custom Design’, was given by Surrey alumnus Dr Ian Collins, of Novum Structures, who graduated with both a BSc and PhD in civil engineering.

He shared highlights from his 30-year career in architectural enclosure, and detailed Novum’s novel approaches to overcoming some of the most challenging space structures. Notable projects include the General Motors HQ, the Mall of Africa (the largest single phase shopping mall to be built in Africa), the Salvador Dali Museum in Florida and the SSE Hydro Arena in Glasgow.

Ian also paid tribute to his Surrey origins, saying: “My career has been shaped by the staff and teaching in the Department of Civil Engineering and I would like to thank them and the University for the opportunities this opened for me. My job has certainly never been dull with something different every day.”

Professor Abigail Bristow, Head of the Department of Civil Engineering, said: “It was an honour to welcome both Professor Nooshin and Dr Collins and to celebrate structural engineering in this way. Ian gave a fascinating insight into how his company works, showcasing some wonderful projects, and it was inspiring to learn about the five decades of the MSc on Structural Engineering.

“It was also enjoyable to meet so many of our alumni and hear where their Surrey degree has taken them – we have so many successful graduates!”

Watch the talks from the evening.

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