Demand climbs for sustainable engineering

SPONSORED CONTENT: Major population growth and an increase in public sector spending have dramatically increased the need for sustainable engineering practices - a trend that shows no sign of slowing.
News Image
Female engineer

Sponsored Content: Demand climbs for sustainable engineering

Major population growth and an increase in public sector spending have dramatically increased the need for sustainable engineering practices - a trend that shows no sign of slowing.

The 2018 Victorian State of Engineering report estimates Victoria’s population will increase by around 50 per cent in the next 28 years, along with a critical demand for sustainable infrastructure to meet community needs.

Steve Kennedy is one problem-solver inspired by the challenges of creating new sustainable practices. “I was working on the Melbourne Metro Tunnel Project, assessing the feasibility of using shallow geothermal energy to heat and cool the five new railway stations,” Kennedy says.

“Part of my work was to design a world-first trial of energy foundations – early works for this project are occurring across the city right now. I really thought about how important energy is in our daily lives and began to understand that in the not too distant future, energy would need to come from sources that are sustainable over the long-term.

Kennedy says that without the right qualifications, it is difficult for him to simply transition into a different field of engineering. “After some research I discovered that a postgraduate qualification will provide the skills I need to get into this area."

But it was a role on a major infrastructure project that provided the inspiration to go back to study. “It was then that I realised I wanted to be a part of this renewable energy revolution.”

He’s not alone in wanting to meet new challenges. Amanda McAlister’s desire to be at the cutting edge of a new area of knowledge led her to begin the Master of Sustainable Practice program.

“I wanted to be in a postgraduate program that would push me to deepen my understanding of effecting change” says McAlister. “I also wanted the skills to place me at the front of an emerging field”.

“The Sustainable Cities of the Future Study Tour to Bordeaux gave me an eye-opening two weeks to hear from some of France’s leading experts on their research in a vast range of fields. The researchers were welcoming and open to all our questions, and it was a fascinating insight into the options available to graduates”.

In line with the growing demand for jobs in both public and private sectors, Infrastructure Victoria’s Victorian Infrastructure Plan has outlined $80 billion of strategic investments over the next 30 years. Kennedy says there has never been a better time to become qualified in the field of sustainable engineering.

 “The Victorian Government has set ambitious but achievable renewable energy targets to transition the state to cleaner energy generation,” says Kennedy. 

"Sustainability Victoria recently conducted a comprehensive study that found more than three quarters of Victorians would like to source 100 per cent of their electricity from renewable sources.

“The technology that supports sustainable energy is not new, but what is new, is the attitude of the public towards cleaner sources.”

RMIT University offers a range of future-focused Engineering postgraduate courses, as well as a Master of Sustainable Practice program, designed to equip graduates with the skills to improve the world we live in.

Applications are now open rmit.edu.au/study-with-us/engineering