Mubaraka Shamsuddin

Fire Engineer

"Being able to work in different offices across the UK has allowed me to develop my network, make new friends and explore new cities."

What did you study and where?

I studied Structural Engineering and Architecture; a dual honours degree at the University of Sheffield.

Why did you choose the Arup graduate programme?

Studying a dual course at university, I knew I wanted to work in a multidisciplinary firm when I graduated. With Arup, I could work closely with different design teams and apply my knowledge in structures and architecture to enhance the work I do as a fire engineer.

Having the opportunity to previously do a summer placement with the Arup fire team and being completely new to fire engineering at the time, I found that I got to learn a lot as people were always happy to lend their expertise and walk me through their thought processes. With the wealth of knowledge and information around me, it was clear that starting my career at Arup would enable me to develop both within my field and beyond.

What do you get up to in your day-to-day role?

I am currently working on a good mix of different projects, from London Liverpool Street Station, to a student residential building in Oxford, to a (top-secret) Arup Dragon’s Den pitch. I have recently got involved in some structural fire engineering on an eco-modular project; it’s always great because if you express your interest in something, people here are proactive in helping you get involved in it.

On Wednesdays I will usually attend a lunchtime CPD to learn more about certain topics and find out about what other people in other offices are up to. In a couple of days, I will be attending a week-long training course in Fire Safety Design, where I will get to learn about a range of fire engineering concepts which will be new to me, and which I will then be able to apply to future work.

Something I appreciate a lot is the flexible working and open office environment. Being able to work in different offices across the UK has allowed me to develop my network, make new friends and explore new cities.

What has been your most enjoyable moment so far?

It’s got to be the Arup World Cup which was based in Cork, Ireland this year. Every year, teams from Arup offices across Europe get together in one city for a (somewhat) friendly football tournament. As well as meeting new people, having a great laugh and seeing Ireland for the first time, I managed to score a goal despite having no actual football talent!

What are your future aspirations?

Something I am particularly interested in is sustainable design and the use of timber in construction as the only renewable building material. During my time at university, I enjoyed implementing timber in a lot of my architecture design projects; engineered woods such as CLT and glulam have huge potential to be used to attain high-rise construction in a sustainable way. I aim to align my interests to understand exactly how this beautiful, sustainable timber architecture can be achieved from a fire safety perspective.