My name is Yulia Yancheva and I am currently a third-year
MPhys Physics student at the University of Manchester. The Physics course at
UoM is a combination of theoretical and mathematics subjects, programming, and
How is Physics Different at Uni?
One of the main differences between university and high
school is that at university, the degree is focused mainly on one topic, in my
case Physics. This allows students to gain a lot of subject-specific knowledge
in significant depth. For example, in Physics, we do not only learn different
subjects, but we also learn how to think like physicists. This allows us to
often know the answer to questions that we have not seen before just because we
have enough knowledge of the basic physics laws in the world that surrounds us.
Another major difference between high school and university
is that in university, students are mainly independent. This means that it is a
personal choice for each student how to organise their time and make sure they
are up to date with all new material. There are lectures, tutorials and
workshops that help us to organise our time but we do not have a teacher who
makes sure we have attended and learned the new material – it is our
responsibility to do that! Everybody tries to keep up with all the new lessons
because at the end of each semester we have exams where we can show what we
have learned during the semester.
Physics at Manchester
I have studied a very diverse range of subjects during my
university degree in Physics. For example, in my first year, I had a module on
astrophysics and cosmology during which I learned about stars, planets,
telescopes and the Universe in general. I also had a module on quantum physics
and relativity, which was taught by Prof Brian Cox. During this module, I
learned about time and space as scientific concepts as well as about black
holes and even various scientific paradoxes.
Apart from the theoretical subjects, I also spend a lot of
time in the experimental laboratory. For example, in my third year, I was
working with graphene – this is a material that was discovered by Professor Sir
Andre Geim and Professor Sir Kostya Novoselov at The University of Manchester
for which they were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2010. I spent four
weeks in which I was investigating the electrical properties of graphene and I
found the work very interesting and engaging – it felt like real research. Here
is a photo of myself doing a task that was required for this experiment – I was
handling ammonia and hence the safety goggles and the face mask.
At the University of Manchester, Physics students work in
pairs in the laboratory. We also have lab demonstrators who introduce us to the
experiments and help us if we get stuck. However, in third and fourth year,
most of the time students work with their lab partners without the
demonstrators being there all the time. This makes the lab experience unique –
there is a lot of brainstorming going on between lab partners and it almost
feels like solving a puzzle.
My name is Gabriele and I was born and raised in the marvellous lands of
Lithuania, but for the past 2 years I have been living in the UK. I am a second
year Materials Science and Engineering student at The University of Manchester.
Many people ask me what Materials Engineering is and why I choose this subject.
Well, I have always enjoyed Physics, Chemistry and Maths and I was searching
for a course combining all of them. Until, nanotechnologies and graphene popped
into my radar and without a second thought, I applied to the university where
graphene was found. As a teenager, I was always striving for challenges so studying a course with so many different fields (biomaterials, tissue
engineering, polymers, alloys, ceramics) was exactly what I was looking for.
Why I Like Being an Engineer
Engineering is the most male-dominated field in STEM; therefore, whenever
I tell people my degree, I receive stereotypical questions about
being a female in engineering. Engineering captivates me as I am in lectures
with world-class researchers and this inspires me to improve personally, contribute
to society using tools of engineering and make a difference. Being so
interested in the academic world, I asked my favourite lecturer if I could do a
summer project in his team. After my first year at university, I got an
internship at Manchester Institute of Biotechnology where I conducted research
on self-healing polymers, made from oxidised lactose.
Imagine getting a one-page long description of an experiment, where no
measurements, concentrations, catalysts are given and you have to make a final
product, which in theory, when pressure is applied, should be able to recover
the tears. I was working with extremely time-consuming and expensive products
and every small mistake could cost a lot of money but because of my hard work,
the results of this extremely challenging project surprised the PhD students
and raised eyebrows of post-doctorates. No one expected the first-year university
student to succeed and be able to contribute to the academic paper – but I did
Why I Joined a Society
Universities are famous for their range of different societies. As I was
interested in Aeronautical Engineering, I joined Flight Simulation society where
I soon became a part of the committee. During my time here I expanded my
knowledge by designing my own aircraft with some help from Aerospace Engineering
students and in my second year in the society, me and my teammate (we were the ‘strangest’
team, as I was the only female participating and he is a first-year student)
designed a vertical take-off and landing aircraft and were chosen to represent
the university at an aircraft designing and handling competition in the United
States of America.
It is such an amazing feeling to be surrounded by like-minded people who
are passionate about their field of studies and it has encouraged me to learn
more and participate in discussions about new concepts. In the beginning, it
was difficult to be a part of this society as I had no knowledge how an
aircraft works, but slowly I became equal to all other members and involved in
socials and events. This year, I taught first-year members how to
use flight simulators, shared my experience about ‘living conditions’ in the
simulator room and got to fly my aircraft in it with the full motion power – I
felt like I was a real-life pilot!
What Lies Ahead?
During my second year at university I found out that Rolls Royce
together with Target Jobs were conducting a competition for Female Undergraduate
of the Year. Over 800 applications were sent and only 20 students were invited
to attend an assessment centre in Rolls Royce. Proudly, I can say that I was
one of those females. They were 2 amazing days, filled with networking, getting
to know the company and finding out possibilities for after I graduate. One of
Rolls Royce’s goals is to have more senior female engineers and attract them to
the engineering world. This company conducts a wide range of projects where you
can put yourself in a position of a real engineer and what it feels like
working there and I really saw myself undertaking the challenges in a world-leading
company and who knows – maybe in a couple of years I will go back there and
lead a group of apprentices into the engineering world.
I cannot imagine studying another subject. Engineering
intrigues me every day with new technologies, new materials being invented, and
it gives me many different opportunities to improve.
Read more about engineering here:
Hi, my name is Abdullah. I am 21 years old and currently in
my second year studying at the University of Manchester. I study Mechanical Engineering
which I find exciting, inventive and fun! So, what is it like and what can you
do with an engineering degree?
Why I Chose Mechanical Engineering
First, let’s see the many reasons for studying it. I chose
the course so I could become an engineer primarily because I enjoy STEM subjects.
Studying engineering has enabled me to use the topics I liked the most in one
course: Maths, Physics and Chemistry. Furthermore, being an engineer provides
the opportunity to apply your knowledge to real-world situations and be
creative every day, solving real-world problems. Additionally, the rapid and
constant developments mean the subject will only become more interesting and
engineers will be more and more sought after. There are always plenty of jobs
and you will never be bored with what you do.
A Day in the Life of a Mechanical Engineering Student
On a typical day, I wake up at around 7.30 am and travel by
bus to the university which starts at 9 am most of the time. With around 6 or 7
hours at university, the day is made up of a mix of lectures and tutorials
spread over 2 campuses: Main Campus and North Campus (where engineers are
mainly based). On North Campus, lectures are always in the Renold Building. Also, there
is the George Begg Building with exceptional computer facilities. This is where
I prefer to work with friends; 2-3 hours of study is required each day. Finally,
to research for assignments, I go to North Campus’s Sackville Street Building
library for books.
In terms of work outside classes, this contains coursework,
reports based on previous lab sessions or rewatching lectures once uploaded
online to further grasp the concepts. In addition, there are tutorial sheets
that I need to attempt before the tutorial class. These are questions based on lectures
in the past week of that module then the class tutor goes through the solutions.
While this seems like a lot, there is still plenty of free time if you chose to
study Mechanical Engineering!
What Can You Do With a Mechanical Engineering Degree?
Using the Careers Service and career fairs at the
university, I have learnt about options you have after you finish the course in
lots of detail. The obvious one is to become a mechanical engineer which most
students do. Mechanical engineers are mostly hired by the aerospace, automotive
and manufacturing industries. After the course, you can also do a Master’s
degree which is another 1-year degree. With this, engineers are able to become
chartered engineers in the future which means faster career progression and increased
Surprisingly, there is considerable demand for engineering students in investment
banking too. Generally, it is working as an analyst to predict market trends
because students are taught the numerical and analytical skills applicable to
the role. Alternatively, I learnt at a university career fair that there is
also scientific research in engineering as an option but this requires an extra
Overall, I would conclude that studying Mechanical Engineering
has a lot of benefits and an extensive range of excellent career prospects that
it leads to. To learn more, details can be found on the university website in
the links below:
My name is Gladys. I am doing my Master’s in
Advanced Computer Science at the University of Manchester. Growing up watching movies portraying
how scientists achieved some of their missions using various intelligent computer
applications made me fond of computer-related courses. That's why I did a BSc
degree in Computer Engineering. As the world is now technologically based and
computing is the foundation of so many advancements happening in this digital
era; my passion for computer science has been enhanced.
If someone asks me why I wanted
to study Computer Science at the University of Manchester; my answer would be that I wanted to
study this course at one of the best Universities in the UK and the world. With
enough lecturers who know their area of interest intensely, it has led to the
production of graduates/experts who are doing well in the computing industry
hence inspiring new applicants like me, to opt for UoM.
Why You Should Study Computer Science
Everyone at one point wants to be a problem solver and the most important aspect of computer
science is problem-solving! Most successful businessmen such as Bill Gates (founder
of Microsoft), the late Steve Jobs (founder of Apple), and Mark Zuckerberg (founder
of Facebook) are from the computer
science industry. As a computer science student, you will study the design,
development, and analysis of software and hardware used to solve problems in a
variety of business, scientific, and social contexts.
Here's some reasons why I think Computer Science is such an
- Computing and computer technology are part of just
about everything that touches our lives from the cars we drive, the movies we
watch, to the ways businesses and governments deal with us.
enables you to make the difference in the world as it drives innovation in sciences from impacting the
health industry, automation of the majority of business processes, and
enhancing our social life just to name few.
- Computing jobs are among the highest-paid and have
the highest job satisfaction.
The University of Manchester is the best place to highly consider as
it has state-of-the-art computer laboratories, experienced lecturers who
provide constant support whenever you need it, big libraries with about 4
million books, the list goes on! UoM is home to great scientists who
transformed the computing industry. Alan Turing, the pioneer of modern
computing and a great Mathematician; and Thomas Kilburn, who invented the world's first electronic stored-program
computer also known as "Manchester Baby". To honor them, the
Computer Science building is named after Kilburn and the school of Mathematics
building is named after Turing.
The computer science modules at all years of study are interesting and
very engaging preparing you for a prosperous career, with room for modifications/improvements
to keep up with the industry demand. I am confident in saying that this course
has everything one would wish for in this computing industry. There’s room to learn
modules such as software engineering where you will learn various programming
languages such as python and java; machine learning, artificial intelligence,
data science, etc. and you can do modules from other courses too in order to strengthen
your knowledge base.
The career path for computer science students is smooth as there is a
huge increase in demand for computer science professionals all over the world.
Some popular jobs are data scientists, software engineers (programmers and
developers), cybersecurity specialists, game designers and developers, IT
consultants, information system auditors, machine learning and artificial intelligence
experts and so many other opportunities.
The Alan Turing Building on UoM Campus
Is Computer Science for Me?
is the one question most of you desire to get answers when you are faced with
several options especially when it comes to University and degree selection.
It is not necessary to be certain
about what specialty in computer science you would like to follow. Just have
some passion for technology and you will find yourself in the richness of this
beautiful computing world.
Keep calm and join computer science. The
current and the future is digital!
To learn more about Computer Science at UoM, please visit: https://www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/courses/2020/00560/bsc-computer-science/entry-requirements/
For more information about Computer Science careers visit: https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-advice/what-can-i-do-with-my-degree/computer-science
My name is Zoë Cumberpatch and I’m half way through a PhD in
Basin Studies at the Department of Earth and Environment, University of
Manchester. From a young age I loved the outdoors and wanted to understand ‘why
is that hill there?’, ‘why does one river flow faster than another?’ and ‘why
do the rocks in Nottingham (where I’m from) look so different to the rocks in
My enjoyment and interest of Maths, Science and Geography at
school led me to study Geology, Geography, Biology and Maths at A-level, before
going on to study Geological Sciences at the University of Leeds. At Leeds, I
preferred sedimentary rocks rather than igneous and metamorphic rocks and that
fuelled my desire to study the applied side of sedimentology (with an MSc in
subsurface energy at Imperial College London).
During my MSc I was exposed to lots of different geological
techniques and methods, and I wanted to integrate a number of these techniques
to answer a research question. This led me to apply for multiple PhD projects
and eventually I settled on my current project at the University of Manchester.
My project looks at how deep marine landslides and ‘rivers’ can be controlled
and re-routed by growing ‘salt diapirs’ (which are essentially hills made of
salt). The properties of the rocks deposited by these flows can be very optimal
for both producing hydrocarbons and storing carbon dioxide. Geologists are the
experts of the earths subsurface and are vital for the ‘global energy
My PhD combines subsurface data (think of it as an ultrasound
of the earth), fieldwork (travelling the world to study analogous exposed
rocks), numerical modelling (creating geology using ‘ping pong balls’ and simulating
geological time) and physical modelling (literally building hills in a flume
tank and letting the water in).
My PhD has given me some incredible experiences; my
highlights so far include:
1) Leading a field trip to my field area (northern Spain) for
10 industrial sponsors of our research group (picture of me in a hi-vis)
2) Winning best student poster at an International Conference in Salt Lake City
3) Spending my entire August 2019 doing fieldwork in Azerbaijan, after
successfully winning a grant with a colleague
4) Working as a team to construct valid flume tank experiments in Utrecht
5) Being part of a NERC CDT (Centre of Doctoral training) which gives me a
cohort of like-minded researchers, and 20 weeks of broad geological training (picture below shows a group of us in the
Alps on a field course).
In depth (PhD Project Summary)
Layers of sedimentary rock form much of the Earth’s
continental crust. These rocks are laid down in different depositional
environments (e.g. terrestrial or marine). Layers of salt accumulate in regions where seawater incursions evaporate. Due to salt’s mechanical
properties it becomes buoyant when sufficiently buried and can flow over
geological time (much like glass), forming salt-cored ridges and domes on the
ocean floor. Gravity moves sediment from the continents to the deep ocean
basins, resulting in the deposition of rocks around the salt bodies. These salt bodies, which can be growing
during deposition can cause deep water gravity flows to terminate completely or
reroute their course. Geophysical ‘ultrasounds of the earth’ (seismic imaging)
make it possible to study the subsurface, however areas around salt remain
difficult to image in these data sets due to the chaotic representation of salt
on seismic. Cliff
sections in the Basque Country, Spain reveal ancient deep-marine rocks
originally deposited next to salt-cored topography; these are used to
understand sedimentary processes operating in deep-water and their effect on
the sedimentary record. Fieldwork
observations are combined with subsurface seismic data from the UK North Sea
and numerical and physical models to appreciate the distribution of these
sediments on a variety of scales and explore how this may influence potential
hydrocarbon or carbon storage distribution and quality around salt bodies.
information about all things geological, including resources for schools and
colleges see the Geological Society: https://www.geolsoc.org.uk/
To learn more about the research
happening in my department: https://www.ees.manchester.ac.uk/research/themes/
To learn more about the research
happening in my research group: http://stratleeds.org.uk/
interested in sedimentology, look no further than: https://www.sepm.org/