Friday Five: Leslie Yeow

Leslie Yeow - Project Manger



1. What do you do in a nutshell? I am a Project Manager within South East Queensland’s largest electricity distribution company managing the delivery of a number of multi million dollar projects like substation construction and expansion, stringing and laying of overhead and underground 11kV and 33kV power lines and the installation of transformers, capacitor banks and associated equipment within existing substations.

2. What inspired you to become an engineer?  I wanted to know how things worked and how they were put together.  The aerofoil, gas turbine and internal combustion engine were some of the particularly interesting innovations that made me want to read engineering at University.

3. How do engineers change the world? In many ways!  Depending on the field of engineering, there is an engineer somewhere who has had a hand in developing and designing all manner of things that we take for granted in today’s world.  Think of a world without electricity, aircraft, ships, the internal combustion engine, bridges, buildings, reticulation of water, sewage treatment etc.  Engineers have improved the lives of many by either adapting what occurs naturally to something much larger and producing something that is able to transport large loads quickly a great distance (aircraft wing and turbine blade).  Or, they have designed spans using mostly steel cable to suspend roads across large waterways while carrying dynamic loads and able to withstand hurricane force winds (suspension bridge) to enable people, otherwise separated by water, to travel freely without use of a floating vessel.  As Archimedes said, “…give me a fulcrum and a lever long enough, and I will move the world…” 

4. What do you wish you would have known as a graduate?  Practical applications of higher level mathematics.  Also, unless you were going into research, you would not use much of what you learned technically and to concentrate more on the financial benefits of designs produced.  Also, how to manage people and not just “things”.

5. What is your favourite engineering innovation? The aircraft.  Still today, I marvel at how something that weighs many tonnes can fly and carry passengers and/or cargo many thousands of kilometres.


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