Nikita Noronha offers her advice to new students.
"Hello! I'm Nikita, a second year studying Structural Engineering and Architecture. I was asked the question - what are a few things I would have liked to know before university?
I'd like to reassure you that you don't have to worry at all about being prepared! Things do work out, no matter where you start. Having a look at the department's reading list in your free time is definitely something I'd recommend - though it didn't affect my modules, it was great to have that initial introduction to build my interest.
Another fun thing to do would be to start a sketchbook. Not only does it help with developing your visual communication skills, but most importantly it gets you thinking about what features and details you appreciate about different constructions.
In terms of study essentials, there wasn't much we had to be prepared with other than some basic supplies to take notes and a scale ruler.
I've personally seen that it could be more convenient to opt for Windows laptops, because many civil engineering programs we use are tailored to it and may not be available to iOS without using emulators.
That being said, during a normal term my peer group gravitates towards the computing facilities at the Diamond, which are more than enough to help us with our work. (While this has been partially affected by COVID-19, I've been able to access all the necessary university computer services remotely so far!)
This semester's been different than usual but we're all managing in our own ways :)
So far we've had scheduled live lectures, prerecorded videos, online tutorials and open discussion forums to help us keep up with our classes.
Hopefully September will bring us face to face again. Until then I wish you a comfortable time in your current surroundings. Do take the opportunity to enjoy the free time you have before university in your own little ways."
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