PepsiCo: Amy Parsons - Careers case study

Amy Parsons is a Sustainability Engineer at PepsiCo

Tell us about your job as an engineer
My role as part of the Sustainability department has been looking at energy efficiency, environmental systems and new technology to increase environmental performance at factory level. From day to day running to bigger projects, I have led teams of front line employees engaging the factory in Sustainability and the differences they can make on a day to day basis. I have worked on projects looking at reducing; gas, electricity, water and waste across the factory from looking at oven and fryer efficiencies, compressed air reduction to water reuse projects.

What subjects did you study for A-Level etc at school? (Please note: to refer only to A-Level or alternative, please don't reference the university they attended)
Chemistry, Maths, Biology & English Literature

What attracted you to a career as an engineer in the food and drink industry?
It's a large stable market with a variety of opportunities across the UK and the world driven by high customer demand. There is such a variety of roles available and different processes that you can be involved in to help develop both technical and personal skills with plenty of opportunities for career growth. With Pepsi's evolving technology and its commitments to the environment, its customers and its people make it fantastic environment to be part of.

What's the most exciting project you've worked on so far?
After spending 11 months of my placement at Skelmersdale manufacturing site producing crisps and snacks, I spent the last month of my placement at Copella in Suffolk to start up a ReCon (Resource Conservation) Team from scratch. It was a whole new factory, new processes and new people which was an exciting challenge for such a short time scale.

What are your favourite parts of your job?
Working with the front line teams and seeing a real difference be made in the factory. Seeing the progression of renewable technologies being installed into factories and the next steps to become fossil fuel free!

What advice would you give to people considering the MEng Food Engineering course at Sheffield Hallam University?
Engineering is a great degree to have and it doesn't always mean getting your toolbox out, it is such a varied course that will give you many skills in different areas. Industrial placements are invaluable experience and will give a real insight into the industry you are going into and give you the skills needed to go straight into a job after Uni.

What personal qualities are important for being an engineer?
Good personal/ communication skills, be organised and have the ability to learn quickly and apply technical skills to a variety of situations.

Favourite product produced by your company and why?
Walkers Cheese and Onion Crisps. They go great in a Panini!

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Last reviewed: 22 Jun 2014