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Q&A: Talking with Zwerus Evers, Senior Mechanical Engineer

Zwerus Evers talks about his new role at Jacobs, what sparked his interest in a career in engineering and water and his proudest career moment of becoming a chartered professional engineer.

At Jacobs, we think differently about the future because today’s challenges demand innovative approaches to deliver a more connected, sustainable world. With a fierce commitment to the spaces we inhabit, both globally and environmentally, we’re continually reinvigorating our efforts to be responsible stewards of the natural world, as we contribute forward-thinking sustainable solutions for our clients.

We’re getting to know members of our water team who are solving the most pressing challenges in water resilience and sustainability to shape the water industry of tomorrow.

Zwerus Evers, senior mechanical engineer, shares insights on his new role at Jacobs, what sparked his interest in a career in engineering and water, and his proudest career moment of becoming a chartered professional engineer.

Zwerus on project site

Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do at Jacobs.

I am originally from South Africa and moved to New Zealand about three years ago with my beautiful wife, Rozanne and two young boys Eben and Joshua. I am mad about rugby - something I share with most Kiwis. I love a good barbeque and spending time with family and friends.

I recently joined the Jacobs water and wastewater infrastructure team as a Senior Mechanical Engineer. I support the team as a specialist design engineer of mechanical equipment and pressure piping from concept phase through to the detail design and construction phase of projects.

In a nutshell, I use technical knowledge of local and international legislation, design codes and client specifications to deliver drawings, 3D models, technical reports or memorandums. I have a keen interest in the digitalization of project delivery and know how to apply Industry 4.0 best practices through the full design cycle of projects.  

What sparked your interest in a career in engineering and water?

My passion for engineering comes from my father. He was a technical drawing, woodwork and metalwork teacher with a wealth of general mechanical and materials engineering knowledge. Although I was more interested in sport at a young age, I guess his passion rubbed off on me later in my school career as I decided to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering.

I started off my career as a piping engineer in the oil and gas industry in South Africa and soon realized my passion for plant layout pressure equipment and piping design.

My interest in the water sector was sparked by an exciting and challenging project I was involved with last year. I lead the mechanical and piping design of a large new treated water facility pump station and I found the design of large bore piping and equipment really interesting. I think the future of water engineering in New Zealand is bright and I am keen to further develop my career in this sector.

What’s your favorite part of your role?

My favorite part of my role is solving technical problems and see the designs I helped deliver being built.

Tell us about your proudest career moment.

My proudest career moment was when I became a chartered professional engineer. When I first decided to come to New Zealand, I had two goals: First, to learn how to perform seismic design of pressure equipment and piping; and second, to become chartered within two years. It took me slightly longer, in between a global pandemic and raising two very energetic young boys, but I made it earlier this year and am very proud about that.  

What are some of the key considerations that will help drive a more resilient and sustainable Three Waters sector in NZ?

Focusing on the design, engineering and construction side of the sector, I think the close collaboration between the stakeholders, design teams and construction teams from the early stage of projects will help considerably in delivering projects faster and more economically. The use of digital technology and Industry 4.0 best practices should be utilized for effective collaboration between all parties in a cloud-based environment to minimize carbon footprint, effectively manage multiple engineering disciplines and reduce errors and the need for rework.

What excites you about the future of water in NZ?

Water is one of the world’s most precious commodities and it’s exciting to see the New Zealand government and community taking action through the Three waters reform program to improve the quality and delivery of our water systems. I’m looking forward to new and exciting water and infrastructure projects in the near future and I think the water sector is a good space to be in at the moment.

Zwerus and his family

If you aren’t in the office, what would we most likely find you doing?

During the winter season, I play a bit of club rugby at my local rugby club and in off season I enjoy playing touch rugby with my friends. I love cooking and spend a lot of time in front of the oven or barbeque. However, nowadays, most of my time goes into entertaining my two boys with fun activities at home, swimming lessons, toddlers’ rugby practice or biking through the park.  

What do you enjoy most about being part of Jacobs?

Although I have only been with Jacobs for a couple of weeks, I already feel welcome and well supported by the team. I am excited to get to know everyone better and build new relationships within the company. Jacobs’ global footprint makes it easy to share knowledge internationally and Jacobs has some of the best and most experienced engineers in the world. I am looking forward to work and learn with the best.

Join #OurJacobs team

What drives you drives us as we work to build a better world – together. At Jacobs, every day is an opportunity to make the world better, more connected, more sustainable.

We’re always looking for dynamic and engaged people to join our team. Bring your passion, your ingenuity and your vision. Let’s see the impact we can create, together.

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