Neeraj Kumar Sharma
'Moving forward with the modern Commonwealth' conference at Cumberland Lodge
Commonwealth Welcome Day 2013 - 2014 at Senate House, London
MSc Soil Mechanics 2013 - 2014 class field trip to Greece
Calaveras Dam Group Assignment Team
Commonwealth Regional Network event at Cambridge
Commonwealth Scholarship Commission - Cumberland Lodge Conference
Commonwealth Day 2014 at the House of Parliament, Lonodn
Commonwealth Fellowship Network of Imperial College London 2013 - 2014
Neeraj Kumar Sharma (MSc Civil and Environmental Engineering 2014), a recent graduate who came to Imperial under the Commonwealth Fellowship Programme, has been listed in the ASCE 2018 New Faces of Civil Engineering, a prestigious programme that recognises ten outstanding young professionals who exemplify the future of civil engineering. This is a tremendous achievement and we were lucky enough to catch up with Neeraj to find out where life has taken him as a recent graduate.
Can you tell us about your studies at Imperial?
"The full one year MSc in Soil Mechanics course at Imperial was intense and challenging but enjoyable at the same time. The professor’s expectations were high but so was their support. The amazing talks from leading industry figures in the last term provided a glimpse of our relevance in the professional world. Finally, the memorable field trips (first ones for me) gave me the chance to visit and better understand the UK both geologically and geotechnically."
Who did you find inspiring at Imperial and why?
"Emeritus Professor John Burland. To put it simply, professional achievements aside, he was instrumental in saving a wonder of the world that I always wanted to visit, the Leaning Tower of Pisa. I felt really inspired and privileged on hearing his ‘Pisa Talk’ during my MSc."
Tell us about the work you're doing now...
“I am currently working as an Assistant Engineer in the Atkins Bangalore office on the Colombo Port City Development Project. I am entrusted with the foundation design of the different infrastructure works in this project, which is essentially envisaged as a high-tech South Asian city, much like Hong Kong, that will be developed entirely on reclaimed land."
What have been your career highlights and lowlights?
"Career highlights include the involvement in three world class and mega projects at Atkins - Sorry can’t pick one!!
- ‘Construction impact assessment and monitoring’ due to tunneling-induced settlements for the Doha Metro Gold and Red Lines.
- Foundation design of overbridges and gantries in the A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon motorway stretch.
- Foundation design of the different infrastructure works in the Colombo Port City Development project.
With regards to career lowlights, I have way too many to pinpoint one. But with my life experiences, I can tell that what you do after those lowlights, is what defines you as a person over the longer term"
How has what you learnt at Imperial helped you in your career so far?
"I feel that the challenging Imperial course load has set me up beautifully to thrive in a hectic and pressurised job environment. The College has made sure that courses are abreast with the latest research, something that has immensely benefitted me in my professional career."
What is your fondest memory of your time here?
"Meeting with Her Majesty the Queen and other members of the Royal Family at the Houses of Parliament on the Commonwealth Day. With regards to Imperial, I distinctly remember my late-night shifts at the Imperial Library to prepare for the written exams and the group assessment for ‘Calaveras Dam’."
What are you most proud of in your life?
"Receiving a full Commonwealth Scholarship to pursue my MSc in Soil Mechanics from Imperial. A close second would be the multiple recognitions I have received from the industry via some international awards, the most prominent ones being the ASCE New Face of Civil Engineering, Rising Star of Atkins Geotechnical Network and the Emerging Star of the Global Design Centre Bangalore office. However, knowing myself fully well, I still believe the proudest moment of my life has yet to arrive."
What would be your advice for current students?
"Have a truly open mind and focus on absorbing and assimilating every experience - you will never get such an action-packed year again in your life, so treasure every moment."