The story of Maria Elmeidaa

‘I am proud of the steps I have made in my career, but I want to keep looking for challenges. For me, the sky is the limit.’

In 2017, I took the first steps towards making my ultimate dreams come true. After years of hard work and despite difficult circumstances due to the war in my home country, I successfully received the University of Twente Scholarship. A unique opportunity, which I grabbed with both hands. I came to the Netherlands on my own as a student from Syria for a master’s degree in Civil Engineering And Management. I managed to complete the master’s degree in two years, and I was ready expand my knowledge and expertise in practice.

After the thesis research at Witteveen+Bos, I was offered a job as a project engineer in the 3D Structural Design group. This was also the moment to get serious about my next goal: mastering the Dutch language! I realise how important this is in order to further develop my career in the Netherlands, understand Dutch culture and for my integration here.

During my almost four-year working experience at Witteveen+Bos, I have so far had the opportunity to contribute to a number of challenging major infrastructure projects, such as the Ring South in Groningen, Zuidasdok in Amsterdam and the Oosterweel Link in Antwerp. I was working in different roles and design phases in these projects. So I was given valuable freedom and support to develop my skills and follow my interests while working with experts in the world of engineering. I appreciate this enormously, especially as an international colleague in a new workplace culture.

In addition to my work as a project engineer, I have also been a member of the Works Council (OR) since 2021. The reason for this is that I would like to see my colleagues have as enjoyable a work experience as I had. Within the Works Council, I am committed to diversity, inclusivity and shared impact. I am proud of the steps I have made in my career, but I want to keep looking for challenges. For me, the sky is the limit. I want to push my limits. This gives me energy, and I look forward with great enthusiasm and ambition to what the future holds in my path!

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