13 Apr 2018
Two of New Zealand’s most talented young engineers have won prestigious Engineering New Zealand awards.
The Student Innovator of the Year is Dinh Van Nguyen from Ara Institute of Canterbury, who invented a small hydro generator. The affordable generator provides renewable energy through a portable water turbine.
Twenty-four-year-old Van’s passion for engineering was sparked at an early age when he taught himself how to create a simple circuit board to control a toy car. Today he is a mechanical design engineer at Invert Robotics.
This award gives me motivation to continue my engineering career and keep following my passion. It’s also proof that hard work really does pay off
The 2018 Young Engineer of the Year is Jenny Chu, 29, a dynamic and talented Senior Civil Project Engineer at City Rail Link Ltd in Auckland. This prestigious annual award recognises a trailblazing engineer under the age of 30 who demonstrates excellence, leadership qualities and contribution to their community.
Despite her young age, Jenny has already had significant responsibilities working on the massive $160 million Britomart cut-and-cover tunnel project. Operating beneath the busiest train station in Auckland, she has had to manage incredibly challenging and complex considerations as the new structure was constructed.
Jenny is also an active participant in numerous humanitarian and mentoring projects, including First Foundation, Aotearoa Youth Leadership Institute and FutureIntech, and she serves on the Engineers Without Borders New Zealand Board and the New Zealand Tunnelling Society Board, which she co-founded. Frequent visits to her engineer father’s office planted the seed in Jenny’s mind about how fascinating a career in engineering could be.
“Engineering is a personal, innovative and creative process which creates opportunities for people, especially through the infrastructure work that enables communities. I’m very proud to be part of this community of international professionals who engineer our global village,” said Jenny.
"These young engineers are paving the way to a better New Zealand through their innovative approaches to design and engineering. We need more bright thinkers like them,” said Engineering New Zealand CEO Susan Freeman-Greene.