Jay Dave

Mechanical Engineering - BEng (Hons)

Jay came to BCU as a shy, introverted student and never thought coming to a new country would change him so much. Now, he gets to help other students enjoy their time at BCU as much as he has.

"I was a very shy student before joining BCU and I didn’t have much confidence in my abilities. To my surprise, I passed my exams and my English Language tests with good marks. This was a big confidence boost. I felt more prepared to move to a different country and start university level studies, even though I was just 17, a little younger than most first-year students. I was still motivated to work towards my future, even at a young age.

I choose Mechanical Engineering as I was very much interested in working with numbers and machines. As a child, I used to wonder about the mechanics of cars and how they reach such high speeds – it was fascinating to me. I knew I had to find out more about cars and I couldn’t wait to get started.

I learned a lot of technical skills on my course as we work in a high-tech workshop with our technicians who show us how to use the state-of-the-art machines. One key software I was able to work with is MATLAB, which is an important piece of software within the industry. I know that will be useful if I choose a career as a mechanical engineer.

Plus, I’ve become much more professional in my public speaking and ability to talk technically about my work. We have a variety of different assessments and group projects to complete throughout the course which have helped me work on my presentation skills and how I communicate with others.

BCU was my first choice because of the location. I wanted to study somewhere in the Midlands and as BCU is in the heart of Birmingham, it was the best option for me as an international student. Since Birmingham is in the centre of the UK, it has great transport links and I’ve been able to travel a lot.

Plus, it’s a really affordable city with lots for students to do. Birmingham is a very diverse city and there are students everywhere, it’s easy to make friends and socialise. I live right in the city centre and love going out for walks, there’s so much to see and do. Also, I’m still only a short walk from the city centre campus to get to my lectures.

There are also lots of social opportunities on campus. I’ve got involved in the Indian Society, Bollywood Society and ENACTUS, which is a society for students wanting to start their own businesses, helping them to develop the skills they’ll need. Joining ENACTUS has helped me gain a lot of confidence, which has helped me apply to jobs during my time at university.

I have also done a lot of volunteering for different events and societies; this voluntary experience gave me the skills I needed to apply for paid jobs at BCU. I currently work for Birmingham City University Students’ Union and hope to continue doing so next year. I get to give students a voice and have their concerns heard. I love giving advice and making sure students have the best time possible at BCU. I’ve learnt so much during my time working with the Students’ Union, I’ve developed key leadership, public speaking and communication skills and I’ve learnt a lot about myself and what I want my future to look like.

To me, ‘I AM BCU’ means everything. I’ve spent four years of my life here and the experience has changed me totally, I’ve had so many opportunities to get involved with that have given me friends and skills I’ll have for life."