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Engineering graduate shares his journey from Spain to Preston

Eugenio Garcia-Diaz came to the UK from Madrid in search of international experience and to pursue his ambition of becoming a specialist in fire safety engineering.

Eugenio chose to study MSc Fire Safety Engineering at the University of Central Lancashire because of the reputation of the course. He said: “Quite simply, UCLan is unrivalled when it comes to the diversity of its fire engineering and fire management courses. It is among the very few places in the world where these disciplines can be studied at university level.”

He continued: “It also provides a different experience in comparison to living and studying in a larger city. In Preston, the University and its students define the area, as many of the people who live in the City Centre are UCLan students, which is great.”

Eugenio was an architecture graduate who had lived in Madrid for much of his early life. Upon completion of his undergraduate studies, he wanted to get out of his comfort zone and obtain some international experience with the intention of becoming a subject specialist. He said: “The UK was an obvious first choice for me, as the quality of its engineering and its universities are acknowledged worldwide.”

Eugenio graduated with a distinction in 2015, with his hard work resulting in his dissertation paper, about advanced computational simulation of fire performance and external spread on multistorey faces, achieving the Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) 2015 Building Simulation Group Award for best MSc dissertation.

Eugenio Garcia-Diaz, MSc Fire Safety Engineering graduate
Eugenio Garcia-Diaz, MSc Fire Safety Engineering graduate

The very next day after submitting his dissertation, Eugenio secured a role in his dream career at AECOM, the world’s largest multi-disciplinary company in building engineering and architecture design. During his time at AECOM, Eugenio worked in various building projects across the UK and overseas. He said: “I gained exposure to people in different engineering and construction roles. I could use what I learnt at University to make a real impact in the world through projects that then got built was the confirmation that I made the right choices.”

After a stint at AECOM, Eugenio moved on to join Arup in Spain, a leader in building engineering and the firm that made fire engineering into a profession. Talking about his role, Eugenio said: “I am now actively developing new ways of making landmark buildings fire-safe in my home country, which many days feels like pioneering.

He continued: “Joining efforts with people with such a strong tradition in the fire industry while contributing to make a lasting, visible impact in my community is almost dream-like. UCLan was instrumental in helping me get to where I wanted to be, and I would absolutely recommend the course.”