Volunteer

Ireland’s National Volunteering Week took place nationwide from Monday, 17 - Sunday, 23 May 2021. 

As part of this national campaign, we celebrated the work of seven of our volunteers who have been nominated by Engineers Ireland’s staff for the positive impact and significant contribution they have made to our engineering community. 

National Volunteering Week post LinkedIn

In addition to celebrating the work of our nominated volunteers, Engineers Ireland would also like to thank all our volunteers who donate their time, energy and talent throughout the year and for your unwavering support.

Read more about the volunteers who have been nominated and their work:

Rahima Ahmed

Rahima Ahmed is a recent graduate of Limerick Institute of Technology and is a BIM Technician at PUNCH Consulting Engineers. 

Rahima is a highly valued STEPS Volunteer Engineer and has participated in the STEPS Young Engineers Award since its launch in 2018. Each year Rahima enthusiastically signs up to visit multiple schools where students find her enthusiasm for engineering infectious. Rahima has also taken part in virtual events for STEPS Engineers Week, such as the Women in Engineering: Why Engineering might be for you! event hosted by the Thomond Region’s Young Engineers Society. Rahima also actively encourages her fellow engineering colleagues to participate in engineering outreach. 

Rahima is also past Chair of the Thomond region’s Young Engineers Society and was the recipient for the inaugural Thomond Region Engineering Engagement Award. This award recognises individuals and teams for their dedication and enthusiasm in the advancement and promotion of the engineering profession within the region.

Carl Devlin

Carl Devlin is a Chartered Engineer who is currently based in New Zealand having previously spent many years in the United Kingdom working on large scale infrastructure projects.  

As a long-standing interviewer and assessor for the Registered Professional Titles process, Carl dedicates his time to support Engineers Ireland’s community in achieving their professional development objectives.  

Since professional title interviews moved to a fully remote environment, Carl has been able participate on 9 interview panels – both as Chair and panel member.  This enables Carl to give something back to the profession that has given him so much since he was successful in obtaining the title of Chartered Engineer many years ago. He believes it keeps him in touch with home and connected to the Irish engineering community and feels that it is a privilege to have an opportunity to meet some of the exceptional talent that will lead the profession in the future.

John Jordan

John Jordan is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of Engineers Ireland and has been an active volunteer with Engineers Ireland since joining the Midlands region committee in 2007. 

John has generously donated his skills, expertise and time for the benefit of our engineering community and been integral in supporting our members and enhancing and promoting the standing of the profession and its practitioners through his involvement as a volunteer member.

In addition to his role as Managing Director of Wirtgen Ireland Ltd, John is currently Chair of the Finance Committee and a  member of the Audit and Risk Committee, Benevolent Fund Committee and Club Committee. John also plays an active role on Engineers Ireland’s Council and Executive. He is also a member of Midlands Region Committee and was previously Chair of the region in 2011.

Ronan Keane and the Cork region committee

Ronan Keane is a Chartered Engineer working with Cork County Council and is immediate past Chair of the Cork region, which celebrates its 80th anniversary this year.

In the past year, Ronan has given very generously of his time to the Cork region and to Engineers Ireland as a whole. During his time as Chair, the Cork region has held many successful events, including the History & Rehabilitation of Daly's (Shakey) Bridge (an event that had the highest recorded attendance for the year to date), Offshore Wind in Ireland, and Cork Lower Harbour Estuary Crossing HDD project.   

Ronan has successfully steered the region through the challenges of moving events into the virtual environment. In the past year, the Cork region have hosted 24 webinars, with a total attendance to date of 2,834, and contributed 17 recordings to the Engineers TV suite of technical presentations.  

The region hosted two events in the Sustainability Grand Tour series and have collaborated with other bodies such as IMarEST, STEM South West and IStructE on events.  Collaborations with our Divisions and Societies were also a feature of the year, with events taking place with the Local Government division, the Energy, Environment and Climate Action division, the Roads and Transportation society and the Geotechnical society and regions, including An Ríocht and West regions. 

Michael Lyons

Michael Lyons is a Chartered Engineer and currently Chair of the Fire and Safety Division. He works as a consulting engineer specialising in fire safety. Michael has been volunteering on the committee of the Fire and Safety Division since the early 1990s and has acted as Secretary and Chairperson as the need arose. He volunteers on professional interviews for Chartered Engineer. Michael has also played an active role on Engineers Ireland’s Council and Executive.

With a passion for fire safety and lifelong learning, Michael collaborated with CPD Training team to develop and deliver each annual Fire and Safety Division Annual CPD Seminar since 2018. This annual CPD seminar in 2020 was delivered in a time of change as all seminars pivoted online due to COVID-19 restrictions. The CPD team were very much appreciative of Michael as he took on this challenge and ensured that this seminar was successfully delivered for 120 attendees.  Michael was also pivotal to the 2021 Fire and Safety Seminar which took part on 28 April 2021. 

Michael has also volunteered to represent Engineers Ireland for fire safety on NSAI's National Eurocodes Advisory Committee.He is also a trained spokesperson for Fire and Safety media queries. 

Michael views volunteering as being an imperative for a professional person in order to develop and expand one's professional career.

Peter Roche

Peter Roche is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of Engineers Ireland.    

Peter is a long-standing accreditation assessor and member of the Engineers Ireland accreditation board in the role of vice chair. Each year, he gives generously of his time to undertake a number of two-day accreditation visits, reviewing documentation in advance, meeting academic staff and interviewing students, graduates and employers. 

A retired electrical engineer, he brings a wealth of industry expertise and international experience to maintaining standards in engineering education in Ireland. He has also represented Engineers Ireland at international reviews of Engineers Australia, Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (USA), Board of Engineers Malaysia, Russian Association of Engineering Education and Engineering Council (UK) as part of the Washington, Sydney and Dublin Accords.  

Peter has acted as mentor and is generous with his expertise and time in interviewing for professional titles at all levels.

He is a past chairman of the Irish Centre of the IET.

Professor Mary Sharp

Mary Sharp is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of Engineers Ireland. She was an Assistant Professor and is now a Visiting Research Fellow in Trinity College Dublin.

As a long-standing member of Engineers Ireland, Mary has made a significant impact on our engineering community by investing considerable time as a volunteer over many years to help foster high standards and champion excellence within our organisation. 

Mary played a pivotal role on the Board of Examiners, which does such vital work in supervising and quality assuring our professional review procedures leading to the award of our Registered Professional Titles, from 2005 to 2015. She has been involved as a regular contributor to professional interview panels and was an adjudicator for the Chartered Engineer of the year award.

Since 2015 Mary has been a pivotal member of the Membership and Qualifications Board. She has been a panel member for many accreditation visits on behalf of Engineers Ireland.

Mary joined the Ethics and Disciplinary Board, a standing committee of Council responsible for promoting, monitoring and enforcing the Code of Ethics in 2009. Mary subsequently became chair of the committee in 2010.

She is also a longstanding member of the Biomedical Division and was Chair of this Committee in 2019 and 2020. 

Our 2020 volunteers

Domhnall Blair

Domhnall Blair is a Fellow of Engineers Ireland and a committed former employee of Roadstone Ltd.

Having initially joined the Institution of Civil Engineers of Ireland on 20 December 1966, now known as Engineers Ireland, Domhnall has invested considerable time as a volunteer over many decades to help foster high standards and champion excellence within our organisation.

As a school child, Domhnall gained his first experience of 22 Clyde Road with his brother Ciaran as they assisted their father Ciaran Blair, Former President of Cumann na nInnealtóirí, in preparations to open the building to members following its purchase in 1955.

Throughout his professional career, Domhnall has contributed to many committees and societies within Engineers Ireland. Domhnall is also well regarded by members for his active involvement in the President’s Annual Ball. Year after year, Domhnall has provided immeasurable support to ensure the Ball is always a huge success and has been instrumental in the planning and execution of this event.

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Cormac Bradley

Cormac Bradley is a Construction Manager with RPS Group and has been an active volunteer with Engineers Ireland since 2008.

As a Chartered Engineer, Cormac is strong believer in the Chartered Engineer title and encourages fellow engineers to strive to attain this gold standard. As a trained assessor, Cormac has regularly volunteered his time to review Professional Title applications and has also sat on multiple panels for Professional Title interviews. 

In addition to his work on the Board of Examiners, he has always been more than willing to take on extra assessments and interviews and provide advice to members on Building Regulations. In this latter capacity, he was aided by being one of Engineers Ireland’s representatives on the BC(A)R Working Group and was their sole representative on the Code of Practice Working Group.

Cormac has also played a central role by acting as judge for a number of our awards programmes and has actively participated on Council, Executive Board, Finance Committee, CPD Standing Committee, Board of Examiners, Civil Division and various State of Ireland report working groups.

Dr. Josette Galligan

Dr Josette Galligan is a biomedical engineer and has been a Chartered member of Engineers Ireland since 2003. For over two decades, Josette has generously donated her skills, expertise and time for the benefit of our engineering community.

In 2013 Josette joined the Board of Examiners, which does such vital work in supervising and quality assuring our professional review procedures leading to the award of our Registered Professional Titles, having previously been involved in its work as a regular contributor to professional interview panels. Josette subsequently became Chair of this Board in 2018.

In addition to her role as Chair, Josette is also a member of the Editorial Board of the Engineers Journal, a member of the Membership and Qualifications Board, a member of the Council and a recently elected member of the Executive.  

She has also willingly judged many competitions and awards, including the Engineers Ireland Excellence Awards.

John T. Garrett

John Garrett is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of Engineers Ireland. He is also a director of John T. Garrett & Associates, a long-established Limerick-based consulting engineering organisation, which he founded with his wife, Anne.

John first began volunteering with Engineers Ireland in the 1980s as a dedicated member of the Thomond region committee, of which he first became Chair in 1994 and subsequently reassumed the role for the 2016-2017 term.

John is incredibly passionate about continuing professional development and has contributed to sharing best practice for engineers when representing home purchasers. This has included presenting an evening lecture to the public on ‘Protecting the House Buyer’ in 2018 and contributing to the development of a one-day CPD seminar on the same topic in 2019, bringing subject matter experts together to share best-practice with fellow professionals. H

e has also developed an online seminar on ‘The Key Role and Duties of the Expert Witness’ for members to view on Engineers TV. He has also provided valuable assistance to the Law Reform Commission in the preparation of its Report on Consolidation and Reform of Aspects of the Law of Evidence.

John’s volunteer work with Bóthar has been previously recognised by Engineers Ireland when he was recipient of the 1995 President’s Award for his efforts in relation to Third World Development.

Majella Henchion

Majella Henchion is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of Engineers Ireland. She is a senior manager at ESB, currently in the role of Network Assets Programme Owner.

As a long-standing member of Engineers Ireland, Majella has made a significant impact on our engineering community. She is currently Chair of the Benevolent Fund committee, where she plays an active role in supporting our members and their families. Her application and adherence to strict governance and oversight ensures that the fund is well managed and in a good position to work hard for members who need assistance.  

Majella is also Chair of the Diversity Group, where she has driven of issue of gender balance in the profession, having established the group in 2019 to examine diversity among our members. Under her leadership, the group now plans to broaden their focus into other areas of diversity.

Majella has also played an active role on Engineers Ireland’s Council and Executive. She was a member of the Membership and Qualifications Board from 2011-2017, serving as Chair for the last two years, during which time she oversaw a comprehensive review and streamlining of our non-standard applications routes to titles. 

She is a regular assessor and interviewer for our prestigious Chartered Engineer qualification and has been a long term supporter of Engineers Ireland’s STEPS programme including setting up ESB’s own STEPS Volunteer group in 2013 and leading the development in 2017 of ESB’s Engineering Your Future Transition Year Programme, the first industry programme added to the very successful third level initiative.

John Higgins

As a long-standing member of Engineers Ireland, John Higgins has been integral in supporting our members, and enhancing and promoting the standing of the profession and its practitioners through his involvement as a volunteer member of the Benevolent Fund Committee and the Ethics & Disciplinary Board.

The Benevolent Fund of Engineers Ireland is a charitable fund to help members in need. The fund is run by the Benevolent Fund Committee, a committee of Engineers Ireland members, for the benefit of engineers and their dependents regardless of whether or not the recipients are themselves members of Engineers Ireland. A past Chair of the Committee and Treasurer, John is a dedicated member of the Benevolent Fund Committee and has played an active role in supporting our members and their families.

Through his work on the Ethics & Disciplinary Board, a standing committee of Council responsible for promoting, monitoring and enforcing the Code of Ethics, John has worked diligently to help ensure members remain aware of their responsibilities as Engineers and strive to maintain the highest levels of competence in their respective technical disciplines.

Barry Lowe

Barry Lowe, Chartered Engineer and Engineering Manager at Lufthansa Technik Turbine Shannon, has actively volunteered with Engineers Ireland for over 5 years.

Barry is an ambassador for the Engineers Ireland CPD Accredited Employer standard, a government supported Learning and Development standard for engineering-led organisations. 

Barry knows first-hand the benefit of introducing the standard to an organisation having led the CPD team at LTTS to obtain the standard in 2015 and then winning the coveted CPD Accredited Employer of the Year in 2018. 

He has invested his time and efforts to help foster standards and excellence in engineering in the Thomond region, where he has played a central role as a committee member and as a Chair, and beyond.

Barry has also generously volunteered his time to nurture and support Ireland’s future engineering talent as a member of the Limerick for Engineering Talent Working Group, as a member of Shannon Chamber Skillnet Steering Group and as a supporter of the STEPS programme.

Saorlaith Ní Shuibhne

Saorlaith Ní Shuibhne is a Transport Engineer with Jacobs Engineering and has generously donated her time as STEPS Volunteer Engineer for over four years.

As a STEPS Volunteer Engineer, Saorlaith has helped to inspire children to consider the limitless opportunities a career in engineering offers. At the beginning of her volunteering journey, Saorlaith participated in school visits for Engineers Week and encouraged her colleagues to also take part by co-ordinating volunteers and utilising a buddy system.   

More recently, Saorlaith has participated in the STEPS Young Engineers Award, as both a judge and by visiting classrooms to help students work on their projects.  She has also brought her volunteering spirit to the workplace by working with Engineers Ireland to introduce the STEPS Young Engineers Award Company Partner programme. 

Saorlaith has championed the STEPS Young Engineers Award in her workplace, encouraging several colleagues in Jacobs Engineering to become STEPS volunteers and running training sessions for Volunteer Engineers. She has also helped to plan Engineers Week events hosted by Jacobs Engineering.

Owen O’Reilly

Owen O’Reilly is a Chartered Engineer and has been a member of Engineers Ireland since 1983.

Owen is the current Chair of the Engineers Ireland Structures and Construction division and has volunteered his time and experience to develop numerous CPD events for members in collaboration with his committee members.

Owen is passionate about promoting engineering as a profession and has given his time to secondary school students in his locality who express an interest in engineering. 

Keen to expand on the work that the STEPS team carry out, Owen and the Structures and Construction Division committee and the Civil division committee developed and led Engineers Ireland’s presence at the BT Young Scientist Exhibition to promote the role of engineers in society. 

The Engineers Ireland stand was a huge success thanks to Owen, his fellow committee members and volunteers participated throughout the three-day event to inspire the next generation of engineering talent.

Dr Juan Pablo Osorio

Dr Juan Pablo Osorio is a Lecturer at the School of Civil & Structural Engineering at Technological University Dublin and a committed STEPS Volunteer Engineer.

As a STEPS Volunteer Engineer, Juan Pablo has helped to inspire children to consider the limitless opportunities a career in engineering offers by participating in the STEPS Young Engineers Award. As part of the September 2019 call to get schools and students involved in the competition,  Juan Pablo recruited St. Fiachra’s Senior National School to participate in the competition. 

In addition to getting the school principal and teachers involved in the competition, he visited each fourth-class within the school, encouraging over 195 students to consider a career in the profession through presentations and assistance with their engineering projects.

Juan Pablo also brought the world of engineering to life during Engineers Week 2020 and engaged each second- class pupil at St. Fiachra’s Junior National School.

In November of this year, Juan Pablo hopes to visit each third class at St. Fiachra’s Senior National School, helping to once again inspire Ireland’s future engineers.

Úna Parsons

Úna Parsons is Head of Faculty of Engineering and Design at IT Sligo and is a Fellow of Engineers Ireland.

Úna has volunteered on a number of committees, boards and initiatives since becoming a member of Engineers Ireland in 1984. 

In the 1990s,  Úna was elected as a member of Engineers Ireland’s Council, Executive Board and Finance Committee and later joined the team at Engineers Ireland as Industry Director. 

At present, she is Chair of the newly reformed Engineers Ireland Academic Society and a member of the North West Regional Branch committee. 

Úna has generously donated her time to promote the engineering profession in the North West region and has strongly advocated for, and encouraged, more females to pursue a career in the profession.

Peter Quinn

Peter Quinn is a Past President of Engineers Ireland and has played an active role as volunteer for over two decades.

As a long-standing member of Engineers Ireland, Peter has made a significant impact on our engineering community through his work as President, as an Officer, as a Regional representative and more recently through the assistance he has provided to our Finance Committee on a number of initiatives and projects. 

The Committee has benefitted from Peter’s solid business acumen, experience and advice, which has strongly contributed to the Finance Committee’s ability to manage the finances of Engineers Ireland.  

Peter’s participation and contribution to the Roof Assessment panel, his work on the Audit and Risk Committee and input into maintaining high quality standards in governance arrangements within the organisation are also to be commended.

Peter has also played an active role on Engineers Ireland’s Executive, Council and Northern region committee and has been a long-term supporter of Engineers Ireland’s STEPS programme.

Dr Keith Sunderland

Dr Keith Sunderland, Chartered Engineer and Fellow of Engineers Ireland, is Assistant Head of School within the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Technological University Dublin City Campus. 

He is an Engineers Ireland accreditation volunteer and also sits on the Membership & Qualifications Board. He combines this professional body activity with an extensive teaching, research and management workload.

Apart from being on the Accreditation Panel and attending monthly meetings of Membership and Qualifications Board,  Keith is also always very willing to assist with members who are going through the experiential learning process to  the professional title of Chartered Engineer title (Phase 1). 

He has undertaken the role of mentor, assessed applications and has participated on interview panels, all of which takes up a huge amount of time. Keith is also Engineers Ireland’s representative on FEANI, the European Federation of National Engineering Associations.

Laura Woodbyrne

Laura Woodbyrne is a Chartered Engineer with J.B. Barry and Partners Ltd. She is an active committee member for the Roads and Transport Society, which feeds into the wider work of Engineers Ireland and organises industry specific CPD and networking events.  

Laura is also a trained assessor, regularly volunteering her time to review Professional Title applications and she has sat on numerous panels for Professional Title interviews. 

She is passionate about encouraging others to attain Chartered status. She is a mentor to colleagues within her organisation and most recently took part in our Chartered Engineer podcast series, sharing her experience of working towards and achieving the title of Chartered Engineer. 

These podcasts have been played hundreds of times by fellow engineers who wish to attain chartered status.

Laura is keen to increase awareness in young people of a career in engineering. In 2019, she arranged for 10 employees from J.B. Barry and Partners Ltd. to do four classroom visits to primary schools for the STEPS Young Engineers Award. 

Laura and her colleagues are now looking forward to assisting students with their projects later for the STEPS Young Engineers Award later this year.

Become an Engineers Ireland volunteer 

Engineers Ireland volunteers help to raise the profile of engineering in Ireland. As a volunteer, you will have the opportunity to give back to the engineering community while enhancing your skills and knowledge. 

Volunteering can benefit you on a personal and professional level, giving you the chance to make a difference to your profession.

Personal and professional rewards

Which path suits you?

Volunteer opportunities

There are many volunteer opportunities available for engineering professionals. Read on to see which of the following opportunities best suit you.

Code of Good Practice for Engineers Ireland Volunteers

Volunteers are the public face of Engineers Ireland and for this reason we will outline what is expected of them.Engineers Ireland is committed to providing safe and enjoyable volunteer opportunities and as such the following code is expected to be observed at all times.

  • Observe Engineers Ireland’s Code of Ethic ensuring professional integrity is practised
  • Confidentiality must be respected
  • Substance abuse is not tolerated
  • All concerns should be reported to your ‘volunteer leader’- you will be assigned a volunteer leader when you first volunteer

When applying to volunteer you will be asked to declare and confirm that you have read, understand and will implement the code of good practice.