Laura Evelyn - MSc 2017

I joined the Arup geotechnical team in 2014 after graduating from Cambridge University where I had studied general engineering, specialising in civil engineering. I chose to pursue a career in geotechnics because of the unique challenges encountered in each project and the fantastic research opportunities of a field with so much still to understand.

At Arup I worked on a wide range of geotechnical projects including foundation design at the King’s Cross development, pile design spanning a disused quarry in Kent and retaining wall design for HS2. Many of my colleagues had completed the Soil Mechanics MSc at Imperial and this was evident by their comprehensive understanding of geotechnical design and their ability to relate first principles to real world problems. I wanted to gain a deeper understanding of Soil Mechanics and pursue my interests in academia and industry and so I completed the Soil Mechanics and Seismology MSc. Studying part-time enable me to stay involved in projects I had already been involved in and to immediately relate what I was learning to my everyday work.

During the MSc I completed a dissertation in developing a greater understanding of heave pressures and its variability based on different geologies. This project enabled me to collaborate with distinguished researchers at both Imperial and Arup, and the knowledge I gained has helped to influence approaches to heave design now and in the future.

Since returning to Arup full-time I have continued to apply the skills and competencies from the MSc in my role as assistant worksite lead on Tideway based on site in Fulham, and now heave design for a major new infrastructure project.


I would thoroughly recommend this MSc to anyone interested in pursuing a career in geotechnics. As well as furthering my career, I developed new professional relationships with industry-leading researchers and my fellow course mates who had a vast range of career experience. However, most of all, the course reiterated how fascinating geotechnics is as a discipline with its complex modelling, unending variability and unique opportunities for engineering solutions.

Laura Evelyn - MSc 2017