“Civil engineering definitely caught my attention at first, because engineering does not only require theoretical knowledge. An excellent engineer needs to have vision and confidence in what he or she does,” said the ecstatic Yegan Pillay after he was conferred with a BTech: Civil Engineering with a Deans Merit Award this morning (Wednesday, 04 September 2019) at the Fred Crookes Sport Centre, Steve Biko Campus in Durban.
Upon hearing about his graduation with a Deans Merit Award Pillay could not contain his excitement. “Feeling of joy definitely took over along with mixed emotions, I was shocked at first, but eventually it settled in,” he said.
Speaking more about his passion for Civil Engineering, Pillay said: “Civil Engineering brings any vision to life in whatever form it may be, more especially structures, as you get to witness the magic of the structures growing in front of you.”
He said his journey was not an easy one, as it was characterised by some challenges including trying to strike a balance between his professional commitments and attending lectures, sacrificing weekends, family time and sleep as well as trying to live a balanced life and still making time to focus on his studies. “To overcome all these challenges, I simply had to stay focused, dedicated and continuously keep the bigger picture in mind. I also had to keep myself motivated to push through the journey,” he stressed.
One of the biggest highlights of his career was to be appointed as a Structural Engineer for a high rising 13-story structure in Umhlanga, called THE SKYE. This structure is set out to cater for offices, residential units, a shopping mall, a hotel and with a future proposal of a hospital being introduced.
“The most enjoyable aspect of this would be the amount of problems I encountered and the many different ways to solve these problems in a time efficient and cost effective manner,” he added.
He advised current and aspiring Engineering students to work hard in order to obtain what they desire. “Always stay true to yourself, never get side tracked, attend all lectures, work hard and also at the same time have some fun. Learning never stops, in fact graduating is just a small hurdle. Learning only starts once studying is complete,” he said.
Next on the horizon for Pillay is to apply for his PR TECH, and ultimately he would like run his own Engineering firm specialising in High Rise structures.
According to the Department of Higher Education and Training’s National List of Occupations in High Demand: 2018, Civil Engineers are one of the occupations that have the highest demand within the South African job market.
Pictured: Yegan Pillay.