Home    AECOM    Insight

AECOM Imagineers can shape the world

AECOM Imagineers can shape the world

 December 14, 2017

 Read time

A pipeline that sends water to Africa, a sunscreen protection pod and pollution-reducing solar-powered shoes?!? These are just some of the imaginative solutions pupils at Saints Alban and Stephen junior school in St. Alban's, UK, came up with after AECOM challenged them to solve some of the world's biggest problems.

AECOM Imagineers, led by Karen Britton, Associate Director, Transportation, aims to fill the UK's technical skills gap by encouraging youth, particularly girls, to consider engineering as a future career by opening their imaginations to what's possible.

"We visited the school and challenged more than 200 pupils to set their imaginations free in solving a global challenge — be it water shortage or air pollution and they responded with designs full of passion and enthusiasm, untethered by constraints," explained Karen. "To get them in the mood, we talked about our work on Halley VI, SpaceX and the Hyperloop as examples of where AECOM has taken on our clients' biggest challenges and is helping deliver the impossible."

The competition, which began with the first school in May, is being rolled out to three other schools across the UK over the next year with a grand finale at the end.

As well as receiving gift vouchers to Bright Minds, an online toy retailer that encourages scientific and engineering creativity, the winners will also be invited into AECOM’s offices to learn first-hand what it is like to work in the industry.

Opening doors to a new world with STEM education

AECOM Imagineers is a great way to expand the company’s commitment to Diversity + Inclusion as it aims to become an industry leader in attracting, developing and managing a diverse workforce.

"To achieve this, we need to start at the very beginning in schools," says Claire Wilkinson, Senior HR Manager at AECOM. "With this project, we are encouraging children to develop a passion for subjects in science, technology, engineering and math at an early stage and making the prospect of working for a company like AECOM one that is within reach, regardless of their backgrounds."

The initiative has been a fantastic success so far and is a great way to strengthen ties with the local community.

"I keep seeing the pupils around St. Alban's and they come up to me asking when they will know the winners and what I thought of their designs — they really care. For them, it's a chance to apply the knowledge they learn across the curriculum into a single fabulous idea," says Karen.

AECOM seeks a diverse workforce

AECOM is actively encouraging women into the engineering, and is keen to attract talent from a diverse range of backgrounds. Learn more about AECOM’s supportive working environment and exciting career opportunities.


AECOM is built to deliver a better world. We design, build, finance and operate infrastructure assets for governments, businesses and organizations in more than 150 countries. As a fully integrated firm, we connect knowledge and experience across our global network of experts to help clients solve their most complex challenges. From high-performance buildings and infrastructure, to resilient communities and environments, to stable and secure nations, our work is transformative, differentiated and vital. A Fortune 500 firm, AECOM had revenue of approximately $18.2 billion during fiscal year 2017. See how we deliver what others can only imagine at aecom.com and @AECOM

Find out more

Stay connected by subscribing to our monthly newsletter and following us on LinkedIn, X, Instagram and Facebook.

Disclosure: Where Women Work researches and publishes insightful evidence about how its paid member organizations support women's equality.


Join our women's careers community