As a foreign national, I considered studying abroad in one of the best universities in the UK, USA, or Canada, etc. I found Loughborough University to have one of the best engineering schools in the UK and I was attracted to the University’s involvement with research, their affiliation with the industry and the promise of a superb student experience.
Before my MSc I completed my BSc Mechanical Engineering at Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria. I also worked as an Assembly Engineer at Kia Motors Nigeria before coming to study my master’s in Automotive Engineering at Loughborough University.
Having a degree in mechanical engineering exposed me to the automotive industry. I was very keen to further my education and specialise in automotive design and development and I found that the programme at Loughborough ticked most of the boxes on my list of expectations from a postgraduate course. Loughborough has regular contact with the industry players in UK and abroad and this facilitated group tours, industry lectures and relevant projects, which was a major attraction in choosing Loughborough for automotive systems engineering.
I come from a family of academics; both of my parents are university professors. Growing up, I felt very proud of their achievements and wanted to set a new standard for my generation, which included pursuing an advanced degree, especially from a top 10 UK university.
The teaching quality at Loughborough very much exceeded my expectations. The facilities were great; I spent most of my time in Loughborough in the labs, libraries, and workshops to make full use of them and making sure I had learned everything I could in my one year there as a postgraduate student.
Loughborough offers such a great opportunity to advance your studies and gain relevant skills and knowledge tailored for the industry. The university is involved with many partnerships and research programmes with industries and when I come across these programmes in the media, forums and events and hear about what Loughborough is doing, I feel very proud of my association as an alumnus.
The support was very person-centred. Before starting my course, our course tutor had been in contact to answer questions and help us get settled. In the first week, she arranged numerous induction events to understand the programme and campus life, know and meet the right people in the student services, and navigate through the facilities available and the online systems. There was also ample support from the module lecturers and instructors. Loughborough has one of the world’s best student-to-staff ratios, and the lecturers are always open to meeting students outside of lecture rooms to answer questions and guide you through coursework requirements.
The greatest skill I learned during my master’s programme is the approach to solving problems which I use on a day-to-day basis at work. Research was also a key skill I developed at Loughborough: although my course was a taught programme, my final dissertation was a mix of research and laboratory work.
My Loughborough degree programme was very centred on industry requirement. I completed numerous coursework that could well be direct solutions to engineering problems the industry is facing, so I had a very smooth transition into full-time work after my degree. During my course at Loughborough, I was introduced to computer-aided-engineering (CAE) skills which I have now developed in industry where we employ such systems for faster, easier and more accurate means of solving engineering problems.
My greatest achievement was my final project where I developed a novel fuel composition sensor using solid oxide fuel cell technology. The project was part of an ongoing research work involving many PhD students, and I was one of the very few master’s students to collaborate.
I now work in automotive design and development, which is a direct application of the master’s programme I did at Loughborough. The Careers Network at Loughborough was very helpful with exploring career options and getting us prepared for the job market. As a student, I participated in careers fairs, meet employers events, mock assessment centres and interviews, which were all organised by the Careers Network.
I joined London Electric Vehicle Company (formerly The London Taxi Company) as a graduate engineer immediately after finishing at Loughborough and supported with the development of the first purpose-built electric taxis (black cabs) and electric vans. I spent five years at LEVC and rose to the position of Lead Engineer before joining Arrival UK to lead durability development for the new electric commercial vehicles that Arrival is bringing into market to accelerate the shift to zero emissions for public transportation. I spend every day at work tackling issues with the design and integration of vehicle systems and resolving them using some of the knowledge and foundations gained at Loughborough through my automotive systems engineering degree.
I have come across many graduates of Loughborough in my career, from previous generations as far back as the 80s. In my first job after Loughborough, I was part of a graduate scheme cohort where a quarter of us were recent Loughborough graduates. I have also worked in a team where five out of 15 engineers were Loughborough alumni!
The student life and social atmosphere on campus is amazing. Loughborough has a reputation of scoring high on Best Student Experience University with WhatUni and my experience there was not an exception. I participated in Students' Union events and was part of a society called Radical Youth. I was also a Student Ambassador which helped me to engage with many other students in volunteering and coordinating marketing events for the University which was a great experience.
*In line with programme reviews, which ensure that our degrees remain relevant to industry needs, the Automotive Systems Engineering MSc has been replaced with Automotive Engineering MSc.