Meet new TechCIWEM member: Grzegorz Skowronek

Meet Grzegorz Skowronek TechCIWEM, Water Treatment Technician at CERN - European Organization for Nuclear Research, Geneva, who has just been accepted as a Technician member.

Below we learn more about Grzegorz's career, what being an Technician member means to them and their advice to anyone looking to join.

Years of experience

Twelve years in the water sector

What's your day to day job role?

As a Technician in the Water Management & Consolidation department, I am taking part in the operation, maintenance and modification works of cooling and ventilation plants, in particular, the ones related to the water treatment installations.

I plan, coordinate, supervise, check, and perform preventive and corrective maintenance activities on cooling and ventilation plant and water treatment installations for whole systems of CERN’s accelerator complex, its experimental areas and some of the special cooling systems of the Large Hadron Collider experiments, Super Proton Synchrotron, sub-detectors as well as for strategic technical installations such as the Computer Centre.

I propose and define the most appropriate solution for water treatment to new systems or the modification and renovation to existing ones. I coordinate, technically, the contractors’ maintenance and installation work, in compliance with contractual clauses and technical standards. I also ensure the technical documentation is kept up-to-date and compliant with the quality standards and ensure to comply to the safety rules for all interventions.

What inspired you towards a career in this sector?

To be honest it was coincidence, but I believe there are no coincidences. Everything happens for a reason. 12 years ago, my friend asked me if I would like to apply for a vacant position as a water treatment operator. I did not think too long about this decision and successfully proceeded with the opportunity. It was one of the best decisions I made. At that time, I did not know that working with water would be so fascinating and satisfying for me.

What is the most exciting part of your career?

The most exciting part of working in the water treatment industry is that it gives me the opportunity to directly impact the environment by reducing water pollution, water consumption, and greenhouse gases. It also helps to prevent the spread of microbiological disease that can be found in some industrial waters.

Water is an extremely fascinating substance and is probably the most important molecule on Earth. I like to learn about new ways we can treat and use water.

What is the greatest challenge the sector is facing?

My sector, like many others, wrestles with trying to achieve net zero carbon emissions. But, it's not only about reducing carbon dioxide but all green gases such as methane and nitrous oxide too.

One of the ways we can reduce the carbon footprint of our sector is to reduce water consumption. Water consumption and energy are strongly linked. The process of abstracting, pumping, treating, and heating water consumes energy and releases greenhouse gases. If we are able to reduce water consumption, then less energy is used, emissions are reduced, and we move towards Net Zero.

Why did you apply for membership and how will it support you in your career?

The reason why I applied to CIWEM is that I strongly believe it's the best place to develop myself. Becoming a Technician member of this organisation gives me more opportunities to learn and gain wide knowledge in areas I am interested in. On the top of that I receive national support from more experienced and knowledgeable colleagues.

What advice would you give to someone applying for TechCIWEM?

Just go for it! It's not easy and quick but it's definitely worth it. CIWEM in my opinion is the best place for self development and career development. Take your time and conscientiously execute the mandatory competences, but remember, mentoring is the key to success.

To learn more about all CIWEM membership grades, including TechCIWEM, visit our dedicated membership page.

The next application deadline is 11 August 2022. Here you can find the rest of our 2022 application deadlines.

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