What our students say
"I was lucky enough to pursue a PhD as a Research Assistant working for Professor Adrian Saul. This looked at the pollutant response of sewerage networks during storms, considering the impact that this has on the natural aquatic environment. The Department has strong links with industry carrying out a large amount of applied research, and rolling findings out to industry to make sure they are put to good use as soon as possible. During my time studying for the PhD, I was therefore able to get involved in a broad range of projects with industry, as well as pursuing the main thrust of my studies. As a Post-Doctoral Research Assistant, my research into cost effective asset management in the water industry was steered closely by industry.
During my time with the Department, I was able to develop a great depth and breadth of knowledge, as well as a considerable contact base within the water industry. From there I went to set up SEAMS with an academic colleague from Exeter University. SEAMS services the water industry with asset management software and consultancy. After 3 years, we have in excess of 30 employees and are looking to double this in the coming 12 months. It is the Department, and the ethos of leading edge technology being applied to industry to help them at the earliest opportunity, that has allowed me to pursue this high growth initiative." Dr. Peter Skipworth
"The reputation of the engineering department initially grabbed my interest, but the open day clinched it for me as I was impressed by the presentations and laboratory facilities ....."
Richard Dutton from Watford, UK, PhD research student in Water Engineering
"I first came to Sheffield to carry out a research project as part of my undergraduate degree at the Technical University of Darmstadt. Sheffield seemed to me a perfect place, because of the ideal combination of an excellent research-led University and the close distance to the Peak District, a National Park with great outdoor facilities, such as climbing, mountain biking and hiking.
I spent five months working in the Fire Engineering Group within the Department. In this time I was amazed how easy it was to find friends here. Especially in the High-Peaks club, which is one of the many different student clubs, organised by the Student Union. The city also offers a great variety of pubs, restaurants and galleries. After graduating in Germany I returned, as my curiosity concerning the combination of composite buildings and fire had been aroused.
I applied for admission as a PhD student. Buro Happold were happy to sponsor my studies and offer me the opportunity to work for three months per year in their offices in Leeds and Berlin. In my opinion this combination of intense theoretical and experimental studies with practical experience is ideal.
The expectations on my work are high but the regular supervision meetings with Professor Burgess and Dr. Davison ensure continual progress. Another advantage of a PhD within the Department is the internationality of it. For example I share my office with people from seven different nations from all over the world, and as a co-supervisor of two MSc students I have the opportunity to improve my teaching skills too.
I made the right choice to come to the University of Sheffield as a research student and I would do it again."
Florian M. Block from Germany, PhD research student in Structural Fire Engineering