President Clinton graduated at Aston University

25 November 2004

President Clinton graduated at Aston University

ASTON UNIVERSITY GRADUATE Colin Clinton has just become the youngest ever President of the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE).

Colin, aged 48, was inaugurated before a record 500 guests at ICE's London headquarters and is the latest in a line of ICE Presidents that began with Thomas Telford in 1820.

Born and bred in Walsall Colin has spent most of his working life in the Midlands, both in local government and for the past 16 years with Arup, in Solihull where he is a director.

He takes over as a recent survey published by ICE shows that over 77 per cent of the population say they don't know what civil engineering is.

Commenting on the survey, which highlighted the fact that young people are the most ignorant about civil engineering, he said: 'Civil engineers are building the world's infrastructure but have long suffered jibes about being boring. It's time the public really knew what engineers do everyday to improve lives around the world.'

Leading by example, Colin will visit 100 key organisations, many in the Midlands in the next year to encourage and enthuse fellow professionals to sell themselves better. He said: 'We have to ensure that the most influential audience - the public - understand who we are, what we do and what we stand for.

'The public needs to know about how civil engineers will address problems such as flooding, climate change and the risk to our energy supplies. Without this level of understanding, public ignorance could get in the way of the solutions of tomorrow.'

Colin is backing ICE's 2005 campaign, 'What is Civil Engineering?' which aims to raise the public profile of the profession. The campaign will target schools, visitor centres, libraries and other public places throughout the UK.

Colin will also be taking his message abroad. In February he will visit Africa, where he will be out in the field seeing the work of the RedR Engineers for Disaster Relief, which is supported by HRH Princess Anne. He will also be making trips to Moscow, Hungary, Beijing and Hong Kong.

Aston University's Professor Roger Kettle, who lectured Colin said: 'I remember that he was always willing to talk about his studies, career plans, etc, so it has come as no surprise to me that he is now identified within the Institution (ICE) by a passion to communicate.'

During his presidential year, Colin is acting as an ambassador for Birmingham and the West Midlands, citing them as modern examples of urban renaissance. 'We have much to be proud of about the way the city and region have been regenerating themselves,' he said. 'I will project that message wherever I go.'

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For further information please call 0121 204 4549 or email: b.a.l.coombes@aston.ac.uk

Notes for editors:

The Survey Shop carried out the research referred to in the press release. The sample was drawn at random among UK adults with quotas set for age and gender. 510 interviews were conducted anonymously by telephone.

ICE is one of the pre-eminent engineering institutions in the world. Established as a learned society in 1818, it has over 70,000 members, including some 5,500 in the Midlands, and provides a voice for civil engineering, continuing professional development and promoting best practice throughout the industry.

Colin Clinton Biography:

Colin J Clinton, President Institution of Civil Engineers, 2004-2005 BSc (Hons) (Aston University), CEng, FICE, FInstCES, FIHT, became active with the Institution in the mid-80s and became Honorary Secretary of Midlands Association in 1988.

During a record nine year period he pioneered a number of initiatives, particularly in communications and media and in 1999 secured a major deal with HeartFM radio for the promotion of Civil Engineering, Civil Engineers and the ICE across the Midlands.

Increasingly active on the national stage, Colin was elected to ICE council in 1996. In 2000 he became Chairman of the Midlands Association Millennium session and secured a second period on ICE council.

Colin is a director of Arup, having begun his working life in the public sector, first with Walsall Council, then with the now abolished West Midlands County Council and finally Birmingham City Council before joining Arup in 1988.

He has been responsible for many major transport and civil engineering projects in the UK and across continental Europe, including responsibility for the maintenance of the elevated sections of the Midlands Link motorways and managing the design and construction of the M602 Parkway Link in Manchester.

His time at Birmingham City Council coincided with the huge urban renaissance, including the International Convention Centre.

He was also senior project manager on the massive Toyota plant built at Burnaston, Derbyshire in the early 90s and worked on a second new Toyota plant at Adapazari in Turkey.

Over the past six years he has pioneered and developed communication and business strategies for the transport and civil engineering sectors within Arup.

He lives in Sutton Coldfield with his wife, Linda.

Employable Graduates; Exploitable Research