In 2020, Engineers Australia will welcome Michael Scott to the role of South Australian President.
The South Australian Director of Operations at Jacobs, Michael’s career has spanned diverse elements of the engineering profession from a technical, geographical and leadership perspective.
His experience includes operational and regional office management; delivery of major local and international infrastructure projects; environmental and planning approvals; and design of commercial, industrial, community and residential buildings.
Career highlights include responsibility for delivery of the land use and infrastructure master plans for the Palm Islands in Dubai and working with the Gunditjmara community to deliver the restoration of Lake Condah, a wetland of international cultural and environmental significance located in Western Victoria.
Michael is also an active Engineers Australia member, having served on the South Australian Division Committee since January 2013. In 2018 he was elected as the Deputy President, before being elected as the South Australian National Congress representative for 2019.
For Michael, volunteering was initially an opportunity to connect with other engineers when based regionally.
“I started my volunteering journey with Engineers Australia around 2009, while I was based in Mount Gambier”, said Michael.
“As there were no regional groups in the area, I was connected to an Engineers Australia team who had been tasked with exploring the unique challenge of regionally based engineers, and I provided input to this group over a period of about six months.”
In 2010 Michael moved to Adelaide, and his attention turned to deepening his understanding of Engineers Australia and how he could contribute to the organization and its members – which ultimately led to his decision to nominate for the Division Committee.
“Again I was looking to connect with other engineers and raise my profile within the engineering community, but I also wanted to gain a deeper understanding of Engineers Australia and contribute to the ongoing discussion around member value.”
With a broad career history, Michael hopes that in the role of Division President he can bring a perspective that represents the full range of South Australian members.
Michael is also keen to improve connectivity to increase value to Engineers Australia members.
“Connectivity of our members, volunteers and Engineers Australia staff to ensure we are aligned with the organisation’s vision and work collaboratively to maximise our output.
“Connecting engineers at all stages of their career in an inclusive way helps to ensure that Engineers Australia has something to offer for all engineers, and improving the connectivity with the public to highlight the benefits that Engineers bring to our community.”
When asked about what he sees as the key priorities for the South Australian engineering profession in the next few years, Michael’s focus largely centers on setting up the profession for the future.
“We need to continue to raise the profile of engineering to the broader community, so that there is a deeper understanding of how engineers shape all elements of our lives and how engineering capability is critical to success of the state.
“We also need to continue to encourage the study of STEM to year 12, in particular encouraging more young women to participate in advanced and intermediate maths and science, to build our future workforce.
“To continue to grow the engineering pipeline and adapt current engineers for changes in the profession, we’ll need to continually ask ‘what will it mean to be an engineer in the future?’”
Michael also wants to see engineers engaged in decision making for the future.
“Engineers have the opportunity to be leaders in the push for environmental sustainability, diversity and inclusion.
“We need to be the trusted problem solvers, focused on meeting human needs for the long term in a responsible and sustainable way.”
The Engineers Australia South Australian team look forward to continuing to work with Michael in 2020. Members will be kept up to date on local activity through email communications, local events and the Engineers Australia SA Twitter page.
Image: Michael Scott, incoming 2020 South Australian Division Committee President