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RPS Colleague selected as 2024 Rising Star by the Institute of Water

RPS Data Analyst, Robert Bates, has been selected as the 2024 Rising Star for the Midlands area.

16 January 2024 | 4 min read

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The Rising Stars Programme, founded by the Institute of Water, encourages young professionals to take charge of organising site visits, grow their communicative abilities, increase their confidence, and connect with industry leaders.

Robert is one of ten individuals from across the UK selected as part of the Institute of Water’s Rising Stars Programme, having demonstrated both the potential and a passion to progress within the water sector. The programme aims to develop Rising Stars cohorts by helping them to enhance their skill set and build their network.

Abbie Thornton, Events and Marketing Manager for the Institute of Water, shares what this programme means to applicants. “The Institute of Water’s Rising Stars Programme is a huge development tool for young professionals. Past cohorts of Rising Stars and their employers have credited the Programme with building a lasting network, increasing their future employability opportunities, and securing dream jobs.”

Robert joined RPS in early 2022. With a background in chemical engineering and a keen focus on maths, Robert was keen to make a difference.  “I always thought it'd be good to work in something environmentally focused. Something where I can put skills to use and help. It's that field element combined with the merits of working for an environmental consultancy that have furthered my passion”.

Robert also credits the changing landscape of the water industry as a motivating factor and why it was a perfect time to join the industry. “I think that a lot of the ways of doing things are being challenged. People are keen to do more, and change the way things are done. The industry is being pushed to work harder, deliver more, which is difficult but exciting.”

Robert's enthusiasm to contribute only heightened upon joining RPS. Robert explains how he came to learn of the programme and why it piqued his interest. “I heard about it last year internally through a senior member, who's heavily involved with the Institute of Water. I think RPS is always keen for more people to apply and get involved. For me its about getting more well-rounded knowledge of the water industry.  I want to identify what's most interesting and exciting, and build my industry knowledge.”

After a thorough application process, in which applicants presented their professional development and submitted personal statements, the Institute of Water made its decision. It was not long till the organisation wrote back to RPS’ senior management, congratulating them for their colleague’s induction into the programme.

“I was thrilled to hear that I was selected. I’m very excited to see what the programme has in store and to meet everyone in the group. The advice we got from the previous cohort was to aim high, and find activities that provide us with exposure to a wide range of prospects.”

The programme enables the selected individuals to meet senior industry figures and regulators as well as participate in events hosted by Rising Stars around the country. The Rising Stars will also participate in planned trips to museums, innovation hubs and attend key events such as the Utility Week Awards Dinner in London, the Young Water Professionals Conference, and the Annual Conference, where they will have a complimentary place and a seat at the President’s Dinner.  The Rising Stars group will also have the chance to work together and collaborate by planning and delivering events themselves as well.

Robert has ideas of his own about what he’d like to achieve from the programme. “I look forward to increasing my breadth of knowledge as well as getting some more understanding about how different people work in the water industry. It's all about learning more about what others are doing, and what kind of innovative tools and approaches there are, whilst also acting as a representative for RPS.”

To learn more about the programme - Rising Stars - Institute of Water

To learn more about what the Water Team does - Water Services | RPS (rpsgroup.com)