Highways England Project Management graduate wins highest accolade

A rising star who is constructing a successful career on Highways England’s Project Management Graduate Programme has been rewarded with one of the highest accolades in her field. 

Emma Simpson, won the Young Professional of the Year Award at the Association of Project Management 2020 Awards (APM) thanks to her ‘incredible wor’k on many road improvement schemes across Lancashire, Cheshire and her home county. 

Emma applied to join Highways England’s three-year graduate programme in 2017 after studying Business and Economics at University of Northumbria and has since been promoted to an assistant project manager role based in Manchester, a job in which she’s thriving. 

Emma, aged 25, who found out she won via a virtual awards ceremony earlier this month (November), said: “Being recognised by my peers is an incredible feeling and receiving this award is something I’ll forever appreciate. 

“The Highways England Graduate Programme gave me a wealth of opportunities, several chances to move around the business in different placements, amazing support from my managers and an industry recognised qualification. All of which provided me the skills to be recognised with an APM award at this early stage of my career.” 

Jon Stokes, Senior Project Manager at Highways England added:  “We are incredibly proud of Emma and what’s she’s achieved. Approaching everything with high professionalism, building constructive relationships with a variety of stakeholders and her colleagues, Emma has successfully delivered her own scheme and is now deputising for the lead Project Manager on a nationally significant infrastructure project. 

“Emma’s experience is a fantastic example of what the Highway England Graduate Programme can provide, offering work across a variety of roles, such as; project management, cyber security, data analysis and many more – all helping to keep people safe, connect businesses and improve community life around our roads.” 

Recruitment for Highways England’s 2021 graduate intake has recently closed with thousands of applications submitted in recent weeks. However, applications for apprenticeships within the company which manages, operates and maintains England’s motorways and major A-roads, are now open. 

Earlier this year, Highways England unveiled £27billion roads investment plans for our strategic road network which will help support 64,000 construction industry jobs. From finance and operations to communications and engineering, the company has a variety of apprentice opportunities available to help build a network for the future and get careers off to a flying start. 

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