TWO Scottish architectural technology students are to experience a life-changing experience by taking up paid internships with a global construction firm in America
Ewen Urquhart, 23, from Inverness and Rory MacFarlane, 41, from Dundee, will spend a year working as engineering assistants at Turner Construction Company’s headquarters in New York. The firm played a part in the building New York in early 20th century and transformed the famous Madison Square Garden.
They will gain engineering and administration experience working on some of the 1500 projects the company is involved in each year.
Ewen and Rory graduated from the University of the Highlands and Islands’ degree in architectural technology at Inverness College UHI last year.
They were invited to apply for the internships along with other students and graduates from the course.
A selection were chosen to be interviewed by Turner representatives before Ewen and Rory were named as the successful candidates.
The internships were set up by the university’s careers and employability team in 2013.
Dyett Murdoch, from Inverness, was the first graduate to take up the opportunity in January 2014. He described the placement as “a life changing experience.”
Speaking about the placement, Rory said: “I am really excited about this amazing opportunity of a year’s internship working for one of the world’s leading construction companies.
“The chance to work in and experience the life and culture of the world’s most famous city is a dream come true.
“Turner Construction’s reputation precedes them and they are always at the forefront of construction globally.
“I am really appreciative of the University of the Highlands Islands and Turner for providing this unique opportunity, which I’m sure will be a life-changing experience and allow me to enhance and develop my skills as well as contributing as best as I can to one of the most successful and innovative construction companies in the world.”
Ewen added: “Turner is one of the biggest construction firms in the world who work on multi-million dollar projects. To come straight out of university and have this opportunity, it’s unbelievable.”
Professor Clive Mulholland, the university’s principal and vice-chancellor, said: “Turner Construction Company is a prestigious company which can take its pick of the world’s graduates.
“The fact that Ewen and Rory were selected is not only testament to their abilities, but also to the calibre of students the University of the Highlands and Islands is helping to produce.
“I’m delighted they will be able to develop their skills and experience with such a well-respected construction firm. Students are at the heart of what we do and we want to support them to achieve as much as they can.”
Rodney Pope, a vice-president from Turner Construction Company, said: “We are happy that Ewen and Rory are joining our team in New York.
“We look forward to them sharing and applying their knowledge and skills with their new colleagues as together we build spaces where people play, work, learn and live.”
Turner was founded in New York in 1902. Their first project was a reinforced concrete cooper shop for the manufacturer J.B King & Company.
Two years later, Turner built 50 concrete staircases for the New York City subway system.
The following year, Turner completed the 180,000 square foot Robert Gair Building, which was the largest reinforced concrete building in the United States at that time.
Over the next 100 years, Turner contributed to the construction of many landmark projects in New York City, including the United Nations Secretariat, Madison Square Garden, Lincoln Center and Yankee Stadium.