Seren McKenzie is the first female President of IPWEAQ in its 47 year history. She is currently the Manager,
Infrastructure Planning and Design at Lockyer Valley Regional Council. Seren’s
focus is on improving her department’s efficiencies including the development
of strategies, policies and procedures that result in higher levels of customer
service. She ensures all members of her team are offered the opportunity to
achieve their best.
Seren’s diverse experience in infrastructure services includes managing pre-construction services of design, survey, and associated roads and drainage technical services, as well as waste services, water and sewerage operations and soils testing. She is also experienced in operational works, asset management and strategy development.
Seren has a Bachelor of Engineering (Civil), a Masters in Engineering Technology (Environmental) and a Bachelor of Applied Science (Environmental). She is a qualified Registered Professional Engineer (RPEQ) and a Fellow of IPWEAQ. Seren was awarded the IPWEAQ Woman in Engineering (2012).
We are very pleased to have delivered two more highly successful record-breaking branch conferences. The SWQ Branch conference held 7-8 March in Gatton delivered our biggest ever regional conference with 191 delegates while the CQ Branch conference in Rockhampton, 22-24 May recorded the biggest ever CQ Branch conference with 165 delegates.
As our Annual Conference continues to grow with more than 500 delegates expected in Brisbane this year, there are very few event centres in Queensland with the capacity to hold our conference and trade exhibition. As a result, the continuing elevation of our branch conferences, now almost the same size as our former ‘state conferences’, is key to ensuring we continue to visit our regional centres. Next year, we will be holding four branch conferences in Stanthorpe, Caloundra, Maryborough and Townsville with the Annual Conference to be held in Cairns.
We are also not forgetting remote areas with our Rural Roads Maintenance and Rehabilitation Forum held in Croydon, 28-30 May. This was another highly successful event with 71 delegates converging on a town with accommodation for around 40 people but that has never deterred our members! These are the sort of events that create IPWEAQ legend and it is critical to us to stay connected with our members across the state. Our thanks to Croydon Shire Council for hosting the event.
And on that note, I’m very pleased to announce the launch of our Go West campaign to encourage university students and graduates to start their careers with our remote and rural councils. The campaign will highlight the benefits of leaving the city and regional areas for a fulfilling all-inclusive role that will fast-track learning and experience. We are working with universities to deliver this program and we hope to encourage a new generation of engineers to make a difference out west.
Our thanks to Gerhard Joubert from Central Highlands Regional Council who presented the issue to us to develop a solution.
In conjunction with our developing relationships with Queensland universities, we now offer Student membership (full-time students only) and it is our intention to actively engage with our student members to convince them of the merits of a career engineering for public works. And I’m very pleased to welcome our first official student member, Martin Luna Juncal, a fourth-year student at Griffith University studying a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) in Civil Engineering with a Bachelor of Science. Good luck with your studies, Martin and we look forward to your involvement with our community.
The proposed General Meeting to adopt the new constitution and company structure has been postponed once again, with apologies, and will now be held in conjunction with the Annual Conference in Brisbane, 24 October 2019. Proxy Forms already submitted remain valid for the postponed meeting. Please continue to send in your Proxy Forms and thank you for your positive feedback on the proposed changes.
The Annual Conference is also shaping up to be another great event with more than 65 abstracts submitted for the program. Please join us at the Royal International Convention Centre in Brisbane, 22-24 October for another record breaking vibrant IPWEAQ event with new and interesting initiatives to be launched.