Jeffrey Walsh

Senior Project Engineer
ESB Networks
Bachelor of Electronic Engineering

My fondest memory of my time in Maynooth University (NUIM when I was there!) was the ski trips I went on. These trips were organised through the ski club held after the first semester exams: a great way to meet people across a variety of different courses, endless craic and memories you’ll never forget. I graduated over 5 years ago and the people I met on these trips are still to this day my closest friends

Heavily involved in the swimming & water polo club
Hurling: won 2 provincial titles in 2007 (Freshman & Intermediate)

Maynooth was an obvious choice for me due to small engineering class size and personal and open lecturer tuition. I think it is the sense of community that is obvious throughout the college, it is a open friendly campus. Specifically in relation to the engineering department: I enjoyed the annual football tournaments, pool nights, quizzes and BBQs that were held. It is also has an open door policy: if you had an issue big or small every lecturer was there to help. 

I found the 6 month industrial work experience included in the engineering undergraduate course in 3rd year to be fundamental to my success to date – it opened my eyes to the professional engineering world. Time management was also a skill acquired – lateness is not accepted. The value of further education/learning is also paramount: I have completed courses in PRINCE2 project management, PSCS/PSDP, management of risk, health and safety and occupational first aid; all which feed into my day-to-day working life (however occupational first aid has yet to be called upon thankfully!).

You must have an interest in maths and a curiosity of how things work – not that you are a straight ‘A’ student. Once you have an interest in the subject matter it will be easier to learn. Engineering is not an easy course, it has long hours but the benefit is the hands-on time – the majority of the work is completed in class rather than having to do the work when you get home. 

I completed my industrial work experience in EirGrid Plc., the Irish transmission system operator. After a successful internship, I proposed that I complete my final year project under the joint supervision of Maynooth University and EirGrid Plc. My project defined a method of varying the current-carrying capacity of transmission power lines based on the weather conditions.
After I completed university, I was 1 of 5 engineers employed by ESB Networks on the engineering graduate development programme which commenced in September 2010. I completed 3 x 12 month placements in transmission line construction, underground networks asset management and High Voltage (HV) substation design. I continued working in the HV construction area and on my 4th working anniversary I was successful in obtaining a promotion to senior engineer. Now, after 5 years working for ESB Networks I am fulfilling a project manager role.

I managed the delivery of 2 x 250MVA electrical power transformers from Dublin Port to a 220kV substation in south Dublin in December 2013. These transformers were approximately 320T in weight with a combined value of €5 million. The transport of the transformers was completed between 1am – 4am which involved an extensive Garda escort, road closures, consultation with Iarnród Éireann (as it crossed under the DART lines by a few inches!), Dublin city council (who removed street signage on the route prior to transport), Eircom and ESB (to temporarily lift low hanging lines during transport).
In May 2015, I was successful in obtaining the title of Chartered Engineer through Engineers Ireland. The process involved compiling a report of my professional work to date and a competency based interview. This peer recognition is an achievement which will enhance my future career prospects

I am currently managing a €12 million 220kV substation reconfiguration project in north Dublin. This project involved significant reinforcement of the electrical plant within the substation including an overhaul of the current foul/drainage system, a new 220kV bay connection and two 220kV wing couplers.
My day-to-day activities includes contractor management (ensuring civil and electrical works on site are completed on-time and to standard), examining project specifics and costs (completing work to budget), stakeholder management (accurate communication to all interested project parties) and completing quality and safety audits.