Student profile
Abigail Vine

Abigail Vine

"As well as enabling me to gain a vast amount of technical knowledge, my placement also gave me a valuable insight into the way the construction industry operates."

Entry year


Placement company

Hewson Consulting Engineers

After coming to an applicant day, the decision to study civil engineering at Surrey was an easy one. The lecturers were enthusiastic and made the subject exciting, and the facilities exceeded the standard I’d seen elsewhere. This was also true for the university’s connections to industry which – in my experience – are unparalleled. I knew that Surrey would provide me with extraordinary opportunities.

I applied for the Surrey/ICE Scholarship scheme which partners students with a company throughout their time here. I was lucky enough to be successful and am partnered with Hewson Consulting Engineers in Guildford, where I spent my Professional Training placement year as a student engineer.

Two of my biggest achievements on placement were completing the detailed design of a temporary works steel grillage, and the independent design check for a reinforced concrete cable-stayed bridge. This experience has enabled me to meet the criteria for some of the IStructE attributes needed for chartership. As well as enabling me to gain a vast amount of technical knowledge, my placement also gave me a valuable insight into the way the construction industry operates.

During my course, I’ve been impressed by the lecturers – who have a passion and enthusiasm for what they teach – and the wide variety of modules.

"One of my best memories has been the first year bridge project. For this project, we were tasked with building a bridge made from cardboard and PVA glue that could support 6kg. My partner and I completely over-engineered our bridge to the extent that our lecturer stopped testing it at 40kg! Despite this, we were incredibly proud of our first university project."

Outside of my studies I’ve been involved with a number of societies which has enabled me to make a diverse group of friends and get a real sense of belonging. This year I’ve been President of the Women in Engineering Society which has given me a good focal point for something other than academic work.

There are lots of things I love about Surrey – the friendly atmosphere, fun nights at Rubix and the endless opportunities to name a few. For me, Surrey Sports Park has been one of the highlights: it’s a fantastic place to clear my head after a long day of studying and my university experience wouldn’t have been the same without it.


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