Harry Morley Mechanical Engineering, year 3
Southampton's Mechanical Engineering course was ranked 1st on the Guardian University Tables and I was impressed by the high quality research at the university. I also wanted to move to a new area of the country, and felt that Southampton was welcoming and well suited to students.
One of my big highlights would be representing the University at Formula Student UK 2013… watching a racing car I'd helped to build drive for the first time was brilliant, made only better by sharing it with many friends I'd made throughout the year by being in the team.
What have been your Southampton ‘highlights’ (best experiences) so far?
My favourite experiences have to start with making brilliant friends during my 1st year, some of whom I still live with to this day. I also met my lovely girlfriend and feel that everyone is very friendly and welcoming at Southampton. Another one of my big highlights would be representing the University at Formula Student UK 2013, a competition held at Silverstone every year. Watching a racing car I'd helped to build drive for the first time was brilliant, made only better by sharing it with many friends I'd made throughout the year by being in the team. I'm now 'Technical Director' of the team for this year, overseeing the entire design and build of the new car. Being chosen by my team mates for this was one of my proudest moments and definitely a huge highlight of my time at university.
What opportunities have you taken up (within your degree programme and extra-curricular)? In what ways are they helping your personal development?
Within my degree programme I have been able to choose modules that suit my interests and pick from a huge variety of projects for my dissertation. Outside of this I spend a lot of time helping to run the Formula Student team and make racing cars! This variety of experiences gives me loads to talk about in interviews and gives me sets of skills that I wouldn't be able to pick up otherwise.
Have you had any exposure to employer involvement or research led learning during your course? How will this help you achieve your ambition?
I have had a number of guest lectures from large important engineering firms in various modules, and my third year project involved researching into cutting edge computational modelling of fluid flows. These give me insight into the engineering industry and the world of advanced research, helping me to choose what I want to do when I graduate in just over a year.
What are you enjoying most about your course?
I love the balance between breadth and depth available to me on my course. I can study a variety of topics within engineering, but I can choose to learn those that interest me in more depth if I want to.
Do you have the opportunity to study modules outside of your core subject area, and how do you think they are adding to your experience / will affect your future plans?
I have modules which look into areas such as management and entrepreneurship; these give me a sense of what working in the real world away from academia is like, and also my New Venture Planning module has inspired me to try and become a self-made millionaire with a neat invention!
What networking, employment and work experience opportunities have you undertaken and how have they enhanced your undergraduate experience?
I have helped out in the NCATS lab at Southampton during summer 2013 and got a real sense of what life as a postgraduate at a top class research university is all about. I also have applied for a number of summer internship positions and am currently picking between two offers from brilliant UK engineering firms, both household names in the products they design, manufacture and sell.
Do you have any idea of what you would like to do in the future? Have the opportunities you have taken up while at the University helped you have a clearer idea of what you might like to do?
I have such a wide variety of options ahead of me thanks to my time at university that although I have learnt in more detail about some of the things I would like to do, I seem to be getting more and more ideas by the day! My favourite at the moment is to join a young 'tech-start-up' company and help it grow into a success. Or join a graduate scheme for one of the many brilliant companies seeking engineers from Southampton. Or maybe try to achieve a post graduate qualification doing research at the university... I can't decide!