People profiles

Mark Fairbank Mark Fairbank CEng MIChemE
Chartered Chemical Engineer

I graduated from Sheffield University in 2003 with a masters in chemical and process engineering. After taking a short break I joined Sembcorp Utilities UK, a large utilities provider based in the north east of the UK, as a graduate process engineer.

Upon joining, one of the first things I did was to review the requirements for Chartered status with IChemE to ensure my role and the training received would be suitable. I also discussed with colleagues who were either members of IChemE or similar institutions about the requirements and what I could do to aid getting chartered in the future.

Throughout my time on the graduate scheme I kept a log of my experience, including projects I worked on and exposure I gained in other business areas. Although I finished the graduate scheme after two years I kept the log going which I started to relate more towards the requirements of the IChemE Competence & Commitment (C&C) report as I got closer to applying for Chartered status.

After about four years experience and while in the role of development manager with Sembcorp, I decided it was time to start writing the C&C report. Although I took my time completing the report, it is in an easy format and with experience recorded previously it was straightforward to relate each example to past areas of work. Fortunately at Sembcorp there was no shortage of colleagues who offered to verify the report and act as referees, who also provided useful advice when it came to checking through the final version.

The application process was simple and shortly after submitting the report the interview was arranged. Following a thorough review of my report and the areas of work I used in the examples (which I would strongly recommend), I was ready for the interview which passed with no problems and a short time after I got confirmation of my newly Chartered status.

For me, achieving Chartered status with IChemE was extremely satisfying as I felt it added a rubber stamp of approval to my experience and career to date. I would recommend that any young engineer starting out should work towards achieving Chartered Chemical Engineer status, as it not only provides a goal to work towards but the structure requires gaining experience in different areas of engineering as well as forcing you to consider future professional development requirements.


Fridrun Podczeck Professor Fridrun Podczeck CSci FIChemE
Chartered Chemical Engineer, Chartered Scientist and Fellow of IChemE

I did my first degree in pharmacy in Germany and went on to write a masters thesis in pharmaceutical technology; a field close to chemical engineering.

I was greatly interested in particle and powder processing and completed a PhD in this field. At the same time I started a postgraduate course in pharmaceutical technology to combine my academic work with work in the pharmaceutical industry.

After I moved to London in 1992 I got involved with IChemE's Particle Special Interest Group (then Subject Group) and a few years later became an IChemE Affiliate Member. In 2002 I moved to Sunderland University as Professor of Pharmaceutics. I became an active member of the Pharmaceutical Special Interest Group, which was an extraordinary experience as these colleagues are extremely knowledgeable and dedicated to their work and profession.
IChemE’s Chartered Scientist qualification was attractive to me. I decided to apply for full membership with CSci registration rather than with CEng. My work certainly involves in depth knowledge of processing, but as an academic researcher I feel CSci is more appropriate – it reflects the angle from which I approach engineering processes more closely.


Image of Andrea Longley - Chartered Chemical Engineer and Chartered Environmentalist Andrea Longley CEng CEnv MIChemE
Chartered Chemical Engineer and Chartered Environmentalist

I am a Chemical Engineer with a BEng from Birmingham and an EngD from Cardiff, working for Dow Corning in South Wales. We have a large manufacturing site there and are always looking for new ways to improve our environmental performance. I look after the site’s environmental management system (EMS) and ensure we maintain our ISO14001 registration.

I wanted to gain Chartered Environmentalist status because it provides a professional endorsement of a personal desire to improve environmental issues. After a number of years working in the environmental department, it is good to have some formal recognition of that experience.

When my children raise concerns with me about the environmental impacts of industry, it is good to be able to put their minds at rest and assure them that I and many other people are working hard to reduce these impacts. I hope that by joining the Society for the Environment, our combined efforts will be more effective.

Environmental improvements are far easier to achieve if everyone is committed to the same sustainability goals. At Dow Corning, ‘sustainability’ is a core value and I believe this helps us to prioritise to do the right things, something which no doubt influenced our success in being awarded the Chemical Industries Association‘s Company of the Year 2010.