UCL Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering


Spotlight on Smart Buildings and Digital Engineering MSc student Apurva Jaishankar

24 June 2020

Smart Buildings and Digital Engineering (SBDE) MSc student Apurva Jaishankar shares her experience of studying at the Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering.


What is your background?

I studied BEng Hons Architectural Engineering at Heriot-Watt University, which exposed me to the world of sustainable design and engineering. Interested in the multidisciplinary facets of the built environment, I interned at firms such as IES VE and WSP, specialising in architectural design, engineering consultancy and BIM, with each adding a piece to the puzzle that is this industry. Intrigued by the digital transformation of the building sector and the abundance of opportunities provided by IoT and big data analysis, I opted for the MSc in Smart Buildings and Digital Engineering course at UCL. 

What have you been doing since graduating with a Smart Buildings and Digital Engineering MSc?

I have been offered a job at Atkins for the role of a Graduate Building Services Engineer, that I am excited to begin later this year! In the meantime, I have been working on my dissertation that I am currently doing along with an industry professional and also making use of the access to MOOC platforms provided by UCL to complete online certifications in relevant fields. 

How has your MSc helped you with your new career?

The degree is designed to increase one’s expertise on various aspects of building services sector, focusing on integration of HVAC controls, energy optimisation techniques and parametric analyses to name a few. The multitude of softwares and programming tools that I learnt through this course have enhanced my technical competence and confidence in the core themes while increasing my career prospects. I am also very pleased with the fact that we choose two optional courses, as I was able to tailor the course to suit my interests and the path I wished to take. Finally, having been instrumental in the formation of a UCL ASHRAE Student Branch, I am participating in an international competition held by ASHRAE by collaborating with few SBDE classmates, fellow colleagues from other IEDE courses and architects from the industry. I am glad for opportunities like these, as they are very effective in providing immense exposure, improving one’s interpersonal skills and providing a platform to apply the knowledge learnt in class. 

Do you have any advice for future SBDE MSc graduates?

I would advise prospective students to make use of the extensive physical and online resources provided by UCL and The Bartlett. The professors are extremely knowledgeable while being equally helpful, so engaging with them will also provide useful insight. I would also encourage students to choose optional course outside their comfort zones that challenge their abilities so as to further their knowledge. Any further questions, feel free to get in touch with me on LinkedIn and I would be happy to help!