Civil Engineering - BEng
Kareem always knew he wanted to be a part of some of the biggest construction projects in the world. As a student at BCU, he’s already been able to play an instrumental role in the design and construction of HS2, a project that is transforming Birmingham and the UK.
“I grew up watching videos and absorbing all the information I could about iconic structures such as the Burj Khalifa, Shanghai Tower and other landmark buildings around the world. I find it fascinating how engineers used technology to overcome the challenges that came with the construction of such enormous structures. Learning about the role civil engineers had in these construction projects confirmed my interest in civil engineering and I knew this was the career I wanted to work towards.
As I researched universities to attend, it was clear to me that I needed to attend a university that had great connections with the engineering industry and was at the centre of a big, up-and-coming city, so I could be involved in exciting construction projects.
I achieved excellent grades in my exams, so I had a lot of choice when it came to universities. BCU was an obvious choice because of its connections and proximity to HS2 Curzon Street Station, as well as the other exciting construction projects that are happening in the city. Plus, the engineering facilities at BCU really stood out. I was coming to study from my home country of Nigeria, so it was a big move, but I had a feeling that BCU was a place of quality that would allow me to meet my ambitious career goals.
My time at BCU has definitely met my expectations. The outstanding facilities and help from lecturers have helped me succeed in all areas of my course. The achievement I am most proud of is securing a summer internship with Balfour Beatty VINCI working on the HS2 project.
The summer placement was a dream come true for me. I had the opportunity to use my knowledge on a real project, one that was world-famous, like the construction projects I’d been so interested in as a child. I learned so many skills, such as setting out and using surveying instruments like total stations, GNSS devices and laser levels. I also had multiple opportunities to get in involved in activities like borehole monitoring and bridge abutment construction.
The skills I learned on this placement are invaluable for my future and sealed my decision to pursue a career as a structural engineer. As well as the experience I gained on my summer placement, Careers+ have also been a huge help in preparing me to apply to graduate roles. Their website is constantly updated with new job postings in the sector, so I can look at the skills required for the job and actively build on these in my course. The Careers+ team have also been great in helping me with my CV so that my achievements stand out to future employers.
Being a BCU student has pushed me to be more inquisitive about engineering and explore which role is right for me in the industry.
To me, ‘I am BCU’ means being an important part of the university and the future of Birmingham.”