Many of the world’s largest engineering firms have headquarters in London, from Arup in civil engineering to Google in the tech sector. London is also home to important professional bodies such as the Engineering Council and the Royal Academy of Engineering. See how our students have benefited from UCL’s central London location and the city’s rich resources and networks.
Collaborating with another organisation
Benefiting from London’s rich resources
Involved in an internship or placement
Engaged in a community or social project
Secured a job linked to their degree
Student case studies
Working on a collaborative social project
Remakery, Susanna Ng
We had a collaborative project with the Remakery, an innovative NGO who aim to upcycle unwanted materials, while also strengthening community bonds in Brixton. We learned about the local problems as well as the Remakery's vision and constructed a logistics plan for material management. We, as a group, benefited from being part of this project and applying our systematic thinking and engineering skills, which have motivated our life-long goals in changing the world. Experts from different sectors held a lot of workshops and discussions.
People. Friendship. Connections. They are the most beautiful things in London. Studying in London, an open-minded global city, has broadened my cultural exposure and encouraged my creativity and problem-solving skills. These skills have enhanced my management and team-working abilities in my work and enabled me to excel at a variety of tasks when under pressure.
Obtaining a dream internship
Arup, Ahsanullah Wahedi
I was lucky to obtain internships during the summer with my dream company, Arup. This happened through my personal tutor, who had connections there. As part of the degree, lecturers would invite professionals from companies to give inspirational talks, helped by the location of the university in the heart of London. I was able to interact with world-leading research staff and lecturers. It was also an amazing experience to meet some of the brightest students from around the world.
I was able to receive support from the Careers Service with my CV, covering letter and interview practice. They were very knowledgeable and helpful. I feel very privileged to have secured a job offer before my final university exams. I will be working as a design engineer at Aecom.
Developing a social app to connect gardeners
London Entrepreneurs’ Challenge, Arindra Das
I started Greenseed with my friend. Greenseed is a social app to connect local people who are interested in growing food and plants and share them within their community. Our journey started when we first pitched our idea at London Entrepreneurs’ Challenge, organised by UCL Innovation and Enterprise. We won an award, which gave us access to business advice and an initial grant to turn it into reality. We also benefited from UCL societies, such as the UCL Entrepreneurs and UCL Enterprise societies.
Being in London gave us access to important people such as investors and business advisors, and the opportunity to present our idea at City Hall to important EU and UK delegates, achieving global outreach. The amalgamation of diversity, high-tech, the best brains, world-class universities and access to all kinds of resources makes London the best city in the world.
Connecting with someone in need
Dorcas Befriending Project, Isabella Albino
In many of my lectures, engineers and specialists would come and discuss their general work or a specific project they had done. That was great, as you could see how engineering in industry works and gauge if that's the kind of work you'd like to do. I also volunteered on a long-term weekly basis for the FCV Dorcas Befriending Project. It gave me a chance to connect with someone in need in the area, and it really gave my time in London more meaning than just studying. UCL Voluntary Services Unit checked up on me and showed interest in the volunteering project that I was a part of.
London is a massive, multicultural city, so there's a lot to see on any given day. I also enjoyed meeting classmates from all parts of the world. It's always nice getting to learn about different cultures and make new friends. Make sure to step back from studying and connect with London. It's a beautiful city with so much to do and see.
Studying with experts in the field
UCL Computer Science, Arash Shaghaghi
During my degree we had the most prestigious and recognised security experts in the field of computer security in our very own building. There is no similar place in the whole of Europe, where you can find the world's most recognised experts in all domains of computer security sitting in one single department. The best part is that they are all happy to accept students and discuss matters after classes.
The experience of living in London is unbelievable. At each corner of this amazing city there is one of the best universities in the world. You have access to the best libraries and more. And, for when you are tired, there is always an exciting event that you have dreamed of attending since childhood a few tube stops away! I am now a PhD Candidate at UNSW Australia and CSIRO.
Collaborating with experts to improve research
Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, Chinemelu Ezeh
For my research in designing smart wheelchairs, UCL has given me the opportunity to collaborate with the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital and Aspire, a charity. This is an enormously beneficial opportunity as my research is being guided by inputs from clinical personnel and patients from these organisations.
Also, I have had the privilege of conducting experiments at one of UCL's state of the art laboratories, the Pedestrian Accessibility and Mobility Environment Laboratory (PAMELA). I received support from Accessibility Research Group (ARG) and the Institute of Orthopaedics (IOMS). ARG helped me setup and conduct my experiments at PAMELA and IOMS helped me design the experiment protocols.
I would recommend that students speak with as many people as they can about what they do. London is filled with so many opportunities and people are the gatekeepers of opportunities.
Getting dissertation sponsorship from industry
PwC, Philippe Hamam
My dissertation was sponsored by PwC, I had regular meetings with my PwC mentors at their offices in More London. I benefited from their sector knowledge and expertise and I believe the experience positively impacted on my successful application for a job with them. My department and course directors helped me secure dissertation sponsorship with PwC through their networks.
More generally, I benefited from the wide array of events London has to offer as well as the diverse surroundings. Make the most out of the opportunities London has to offer.
Working on a project with the V&A Museum
V&A, Josh Bailey
My Centre for Doctoral Training and UCL department have a wide array of links that I have benefited from. Firstly, I have been able to work on a project involving the V&A in which we were tasked with designing an activity geared towards school students who were to visit the museum for the Ove Arup exhibition. Furthermore, the Faculty of Engineering connections with Shell and the London Legacy Development Corporation meant that our public engagement group (UCell) took part in a multidisciplinary project in East London schools with disadvantaged children.
Through links within my research group, I was able to collaborate on some work with Ceres Power, based just outside London. Furthermore, I regularly get access to cutting edge equipment and benefit from the expertise of two sets of academics. UCell has also started a collaboration with INTOUniversity, a charity helping children towards access to university.
Going on field trips to see engineering projects
Thames Barrier, Rebecca Forgesson
It was fantastic to have some guest lecturers and an assignment set by people from HR Wallingford (a leading coastal engineering firm). We were able to learn a lot from them as well as network and get our names into the business. We also went on field trips, including one along the south coast to witness various coastal protection schemes, which were great to see in real life. In another class, we visited sustainable drainage schemes around London and went on a trip to the Thames Barrier. These field trips gave an insightful view of flood protection in a big city, where flooding is a significant problem.
Studying and doing group projects with people from all over the world, widened my horizons and helped me see things from different perspectives. I’d recommend that future students speak to any guest lecturers about how they got to their position in their company and how to get a foot in the door. Engage with as many classmates as you can as they all have something to offer to your learning.
These case studies reflect the experience and opinion of the individual concerned and are provided to give a general illustration of some benefits that may be available to UCL graduate students. The actual opportunities available will depend on what is available at any given time and will vary between students, faculties and departments. These experiences should not necessarily be considered as representative of opportunities for all UCL students and not all activity mentioned forms a part of any taught syllabus or was organised through UCL.