Chief Mechanical Engineer Becomes a Fellow of the IMechE
We are delighted to announce that Chief Mechanical Engineer Paul Kaliafetis has reached a major milestone in his career, becoming a Fellow of the IMechE. In this interview he tells us what this means and what comes next.
What were your first steps to becoming an engineer?
Since I was very young I was interested in problems solving, science, maths and physics. I studied at a university that focused on advanced research work. During the last two years of my studies, I was involved in research and development activities.
My first professional role included the scientific research and development of mathematical models with Finite Elements Analysis (FEA) for a German company, leading to the design optimisation of high-pressure pumps for hydraulics. This was a very productive period, as I published four papers in recognised scientific magazines and presented my findings at three international conferences.
When that project was completed, I started to work as a contractor for the design of industrial high-pressure systems. My first role for the oil and gas sector was more than twenty years ago, as a team member for the successful design of new facilities at Libya for Repsol Oil Operations.
How has the IMechE helped you to advance your skills and experience?
The well-structured approach of the IMechE towards continuous professional development was very helpful in advancing my skills and experience. The Career Developer online portal allowed the recording of my experience and activities, and created a strong framework for career progression.
The involvement with the local IMechE committee, as well as the exchange of information and experiences with engineers of other sectors, also helped towards my personal growth. Such interaction with other engineers is highly recommended for all professionals as a means of development.
What does being a Fellow of the IMechE involve?
More actions and involvement in order to support the careers of other engineers, and to continue the promotion of engineering at all levels of society, industry and academia. Further work is required, which is very rewarding and contributes to the improvement of the world through engineering.
Would you recommend the IMechE to all mechanical engineers?
Absolutely! Involvement with the IMechE is crucial to constant learning, simultaneously improving the knowledge that ensures an engineer can stay at the cutting edge of engineering and get the very best out of their career plan.
The career developer portal of IMechE is a great tool for setting goals, creating action plans and identifying any skills gaps against set competency targets. It also assists in the reviewing of progress and professional development.
The IMechE's annual events help members to expand their knowledge and meet people from various industry sectors. Most of these events are free to attend.
What's the next step in your career progression?
I will continue to expand my knowledge and contribute to the development or refinement of industry standards. My plan is to have more involvement with the local IMechE committee. I would also like to become an industrial assessor for the needs of the IMechE.
There are even more plans for the future. I believe that I will have the time and the energy to do my best, and contribute more to society through engineering.