At UTCN, I became highly invested in Electronic engineering and programming. As a result, I wanted to go into an industry surrounding those areas. However, due to the small amount the UK has in programming and electronics, I decided to go to University to gain more connections overseas and learn more about the subjects I was interested in. I chose the University of Bath due to its status and because it was one of seven universities that offered a course in Computer System Engineering. This course allowed me to study electronic engineering and learn programming techniques, including Artificial Intelligence, Microprocessors, Control Systems, and Communication Principles. This course offered a large amount of practical work; however, due to the coronavirus, lecturers, laboratories, and other campus-based work were cancelled. As a result, I have spent the last year studying in Norwich via remote online learning. Though this has been stressful, I have spent most of my free time taking extra online courses in other areas such as game development, reinforcement learning, Japanese studies and graphics design to add to my CV.
I have spent eight years dismantling computers, writing programs and investing time into learning new techniques in computer system engineering. As electronic engineering is growing exponentially with computer science and programming techniques ever-changing, I believe there could be many opportunities in the world for people interested. All that is required is the connections to get there.
For students wanting to follow in my footsteps and take a university course, my advice is this: Wait! Due to the coronavirus, a lot of universities have been online for a whole year. We still do not know how long this will last for and we don’t know if universities will stick to online learn due to how cheap it is. Therefore, I recommend students to wait a year until life has turned back to normality. If some want to study programming or electronic engineering, I recommend searching online for apprenticeships in those areas either within or outside the UK. My most extensive advice would be to network, network, and network! I have been searching for a placement year for the past year, and due to the virus, a lot of overseas business are rejecting students. Some have closed their doors, and it has become increasingly difficult to find work. Therefore, it is paramount you utilise your time at UTCN to network with as many companies as you can. Even if you do not find their area of work interesting, they will always have more connections than you will be able to utilise.