Sheffield has the perfect balance between nature and city life

Grace Lim at the AMRC
Grace Lim
Project Engineer, AMRC
BSc Artificial Intelligence and Computer Science/ MSc Cybersecurity and Artificial Intelligence
Grace loved studying at Sheffield so much that she chose to return to do an MSc in Cybersecurity and Artificial Intelligence after successfully completing a BSc in Artificial Intelligence and Computer Science. Grace is now a Project Engineer at the University's Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC).

What does your employer do?

At the AMRC we carry our research towards advanced manufacturing such as machining techniques, connectivity of smart factories, data science, cyber security for operational technology, etc.

What are your main responsibilities?

I work on projects involving artificial intelligence, such as predictive maintenance, natural language processing; and cybersecurity such as setting up sandboxes, research in cybersecurity for industrial robots and protocols and more. My responsibilities also include scoping projects where I am given the opportunity to make plans and seek out the right audience for the work.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your role?

Manufacturing is such a crucial industry. I find it very fulfilling that I am working on research that contributes to the future of manufacturing. Being in a place where I am able to speak to various organisations, learning about the challenges in each sector and experimenting with solutions helps me learn about the nature of the sectors and propose potential solutions as a means for mitigation.

What skills/qualifications from your degree or other training do you make use of in your job?

University modules consist of a large variety of fields, ranging from speech processing and machine learning, to digital forensics and cryptography. This gives students the opportunity to learn the fundamentals of each and discover if that is the field they would like to specialise in. However, the more obvious advantage to me is the exposure it provides in exploring tools and applications available for the challenges we encounter in projects. Working for a year now, I have encountered a variety of projects, at which the exposure in University definitely helped me achieve the set out goals.

Why did you choose to study at Sheffield rather than another institution?

Sheffield is one of the Russell Group Universities, meaning that I can be sure that the education provided is of high quality. Not only does Sheffield focus on academia, they also prioritise extracurricular activities by hosting various events and allowing students to express their interest with like-minded peers through the many clubs and societies available. A good balance between the two is crucial for personal development.

What do you like best about Sheffield and the University?

Known for being the greenest city in the UK, Sheffield has the perfect balance between nature and city life. Sheffield has numerous parks, such as the Botanical Gardens which has the most adorable squirrels, the historic Weston Park, and of course, having the Peak District so close by is also a shout. However, this doesn’t mean that Sheffield is all nature and nothing else! There are a wide range of sport activities and social events in the city and in the Student Union. The Student Union has been No.1 in the country for years too! The University also puts in a lot of effort into ensuring students are heard and that students receive the best teachings possible.

Did your time at Sheffield meet your expectations?

Yes. When deciding on an institution to pursue my masters in, I considered all aspects including academic modules, University ranking, social life, University support and facilities etc. Sheffield has met all my expectations through their support for students during the pandemic, and in helping me with the processes for a job application.

What were the best things about studying in the Department?

I enjoyed having many hands-on assignments, which taught me a lot of the fundamentals. This experience has been very useful in industry as I have been exposed to the tools and processes during my time at University. I also appreciate the variety in modules which allowed me to better understand where my interests lie.

If you could give one piece of advice to current students or recent graduates, what would it be?

I would say if you have the chance to gain some industry experience from placements, go for it! The hands-on experience at work has definitely given me a better perspective for where my interests lie. However, don't worry if you are unsure about what industry you would like to get into as in most cases you will be able to apply your skills in multiple sectors. Definitely utilise the University career services to learn more about job applications so you can hit the ground running. I would also highly recommend joining Global Campus or other clubs and societies for a good balance during your studies in University. The friends found in the social parts of University will last long after you part ways during graduation.

Four students laughing while sat at a bench, outside the Students' Union

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