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UCL Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering

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Life at CEGE

Our students, in their own words. Find out what life's really like within the UCL Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering.

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Undergraduate 

Engineering (Civil) BEng 

Hamza
Hamza Iftikhar 

The thing that really surprised me about the course was how much importance they give to teamwork exercises.

Most of our project are in groups, so we have a lot of opportunities to work with other students. And that’s not just in the civil engineering department. 

It was a really exciting experience to work together and build a project that was on a scale that we didn’t think would be possible as students. 
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We have something called the Integrated Engineering Programme, where we have students from other courses that we work with as well, for example mechanical engineering, and biochemical engineering, and that gives you a nice insight into what the professional world is like. 

One of my major highlights was a Constructionarium we did, which we did a couple of weeks ago. We went off to a place near Norfolk, the National Construction College, and we had the opportunity for the first time to build something on a large scale so all of the theoretical knowledge we learned in the first few years we had the opportunity to implement it. 

We had designers and contractors from Laing O'Rourke and Waterman and it was just a really exciting experience to work together and build a project that was on a scale that we didn’t think would be possible as students. 

Engineering (Civil) MEng 

Curran
Gavin Curran 

I chose to study Civil Engineering because I’ve always liked maths and physics, and one of my teachers at school was an engineer. He talked about how the practical side of science and maths was very interesting. 

Growing up I did work with my dad a lot on little construction projects and home renovations, so I’ve always been involved in construction somehow. 

It was a lot more diverse and complex than I thought it would be. Maths and physics are just a fraction of what we do.
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The best thing about CEGE is how small it is. There are very few students every year, which means that we get to know each other really well which is unusual at university. And we know our professors pretty much on a first-name basis which makes them very approachable and leads to a much more in-depth learning experience. 

I was expecting the course to be very theoretical, a lot like you’d expect in high school, with a lot of people doing maths and physics, and a lot of number crunching. But there was a lot of teamwork, soft skills, getting to know people, team working, and it was a lot more diverse and complex than I thought it would be. Maths and physics are just a fraction of what we do. 

I think the biggest highlight for CEGE is the number of field trips we do. In first year, you do a big surveying field trip and then in second-year you do a construction field trip. These are very original and very out-of-the-box learning experiences that make this department and this course very unique. This is something you wouldn’t really expect in university, to get outside, on-site, in the mud, doing actual construction-like activities. 


Postgraduate taught 

Earthquake Engineering with Disaster Management MSc 

Esteban Medrano

The things that I’ve enjoyed the most is meeting new people and living in London in general. Where I’m from, it’s a big city, but there’s no multi-cultural diversity. We’re all Mexicans! So I find it very interesting here in London you can see this mix of cultures of people from all over the world. 

I think this course has widened my vision of how you can apply engineering.
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What I enjoyed on the course itself – I think it’s the challenging aspects of it. Doing the actual coursework, enjoying my reading weeks, getting to study with my classmates and learning new things every day. 

I think what surprised me the most about the course was that my personal approach to engineering was just the design aspect of it. Designing structures. But I think this course has widened my vision of how you can apply engineering. So, for insurance companies, and other aspects of society I wasn’t even aware that was possible to apply it. 

The skills I developed during my course were definitely my research skills. Time management too - I’ve learned to manage my time effectively to meet deadlines and not to stress out that much. Some social skills as well, this cultural clash that you sometimes have with your classmates or teachers, I think that’s important as well - learning to live with people from other cultures and other countries.