Minjiang Chen, Senior Design Engineer

Minjiang Chen, graduate engineer, standing in Scottish Power lobby smiling at the camera

Minjiang Chen studied for his PhD in Electronic & Electrical Engineering with us here at Strathclyde. He's now working as a Senior Design Engineer for Scottish Power Energy Networks following his graduation.

Let's take a look into a typical day in his working life!

My alarm goes off…

My alarm goes off at 6.30am, Monday to Friday and I try to arrive at the office at 8am.

I’m responsible for…

I’m responsible for designing, tendering, and delivering the Active Network Management (ANM) scheme for existing distributed generation and new customers. To do that, I have to engage with National Grid (electricity system operator), Scottish Power Transmission, and distributed generation customers to ensure the ANM meet their requirements.

Also, my job undertakes constraint analysis for customers who will connect under the ANM scheme and prepares ANM connection offers for customers.

I got my job…

When I saw this job advertisement I felt my knowledge and my PhD research matched this job requirement. Then, I decided to submit my CV and cover letter. Two months later, I was lucky enough and received a job interview. After attending this interview I was offered the role of a Senior Design Engineer on the Scottish Power which I began in October 2018.

My course prepared me for the working world…

My course equipped me with the technical skills required for this job. This provided me with a comprehensive theoretical and working knowledge of power system.

During my PhD study, I increased my relevant skillsets in power system design, analysis, and modelling. I've also learnt effective planning, communicating with colleagues from different countries, and delivering technical reports within the pre-defined deadline.

My typical day…

During my typical day, once I arrive at the office, I usually write down everything I have to complete and prioritise them depending on their urgency and importance.

I check my emails and calendar and try to make plans such as organising meetings. I then review the status of the project I'm currently working on and try to finish any pending work.

I try to make sure all the work assigned to me is moving forward. I also keep in touch with customers and update them on our progress and make sure they're satisfied with the performance.

My most memorable work moment…

My most memorable work moment was when I attended Scottish Power’s annual event. It gave me the opportunity to better understand what's going on within the company, both currently and ahead, with a fantastic line-up of presenters from the various departments.

Moreover, it gave me opportunities to socialise and engage with colleagues.

The best part of my job…

As my job needs to engage with the National Grid, Scottish Power Transmission, existing Distributed Generation customer, and potential new users, I have plenty of opportunities to travel to various places and meet different professionals.

My advice for other graduates…

Don't just focus on developing your technical skills but also cultivating the behaviours and values that will most impact your success in your career.

Also don’t limit yourself to find the job you love now. Try to find the job matches your technical skills.

Finally - don’t be afraid to ask questions in a new job. Listen to other people, it's how you learn and grow in your career.

If I didn’t become an engineer I’d be a…

If I didn’t become a Senior Design Engineer I’d be a researcher or teaching staff in the Department of Electronic & Electrical Engineering.

In the future I'd like to continue my professional development and contribute to the teaching and development of academic programmes at university.