A Week It’s Been…

It’s been a week since I finished my last university exam and drove off to fly to Amsterdam where I had one of the best weekends ever, with some amazing friends.

When I returned to England, I came back to my parent’s house and went out for a meal to celebrate finishing university with my parents, sister, boyfriend and both sets of grandparents. I’m very lucky to have such a huge support system.

I then returned to Uxbridge on Wednesday to have lunch with my colleagues from GSK, nearly a year after I left and it’s great to be catching up with them, weird to not know whether I’ll see them again or not. That evening I went out for another meal with my dissertation group and tutor (Team Rob ftw!) which was great and we had such a laugh, really great way to end the year after all our worries and stress regarding our dissertation and the encouragement we got from our tutor.

Thursday was a great day too, I met up with a friend and we took her gorgeous little girl to a soft play area and out shopping! Later on I had a WCIT dinner at the Waterman’s Hall, which was magnificent to celebrate diversity and inclusion, much to my surprise I was sat at the top table and was mentioned in the Master’s speech, I very much appreciated his and everyone’s kind words. It’s really nice to be a part of that community!

Friday again was busy, met my friend for breakfast and then we helped with the Level 2 transition day for our department, anybody who knows me knows I love to talk, and I really do love chatting about how I found my placement year and this past year of university, giving them advice which I hope will be of value. I was also able to see one of my mentors, David Barker, on campus promoting the Placer app at the Brunel Careers Fair. After I rushed off to pack up my room into my car (not sure how it all managed to fit in my little Seat Ibiza), handed in my keys, and drove off into the distance. I am officially moved back to Hertfordshire now!

It’s been a hectic week but I love to be busy, better than having nothing to do!

(Now off to Corfu for a few days to actually relax… with nothing to do but read a good book whilst tanning)


What Does May Bring For Me?

It’s the last day of April and it is just dawning on me what the next month brings…

πŸ“ I’ll have finished all 4 of my exams, which means I will have technically finished university and will just be awaiting the results.

🏑 I’ll have moved out of student accommodation and back home.

πŸ‘―β€β™€οΈ Moving home means I will be saying bye to my university friends, some who I’ve lived with, which will be strange not knowing when I’ll next be seeing them.

πŸ‡³πŸ‡± I will have visited Amsterdam with my boyfriend and friends to celebrate end of exams.

🧑 I will have said goodbye to some GSK colleagues as I’ve ended my dissertation with them and will be moving away from where their offices are.

πŸ‡¬πŸ‡· I will be having another holiday with my boyfriend to Greece, ending on the last day of May and wrapping up what I presume will be a weird, yet wonderful month!


Made In Brunel

img_0208Yesterday evening I had the opportunity to present my dissertation to industry experts at Brunel University’s Made In Brunel: Software Innovation event! It was a really great evening and I met some very impressive people. I really enjoyed being able to talk through my dissertation project and gain feedback on the concept that I have been working on with GSK.

Four years ago I met one of my great friends on my course at a Made In Brunel event, which we were invited to as prospective students, since then it has always been a goal to present too, so I’m really happy that I was able to come full circle and end my university career where it had started.


Dissertation Submitted!

It feels weird to think that I am old enough and able enough to have just written and submitted my dissertation…

Personally, I love projects and coursework more than exams and I really enjoyed developing a project from researching, to designing, to developing a solution for a real-life IT business problem. That’s not to say it was a breeze, it’s hard when there’s time and knowledge constraints, and you’re the only resource.

That’s why ensuring you get the right help and support matters, and why my tutor group wanted to do something special for our tutor. So we printed off t-shirts and surprised him by all turning up late, and revealing them.

Whether you’re about to submit or will do in the future, good luck, don’t be afraid to ask for help and make sure you pick a project you’ll enjoy developing πŸ™‚


WCIT Student Award 2018

On Wednesday 21st February 2018, I was incredibly fortunate to win the Outstanding Information Technology Student Award at the 99th Business Luncheon at the Armourer’s Hall. For those unfamiliar to the Worshipful Company of Information Technologists (WCIT), it is the 100th Livery Company of London, focusing on honouring tradition but also modern innovation and charitable contribution.

The luncheon was fantastic, I was able to network and meet professionals from a variety of IT backgrounds who are at the top of their fields and are either Freeman or Liveryman of the WCIT.

I received the award after being nominated by my tutor at Brunel, even being nominated was an amazing achievement for me, but to win it was astounding. I was nominated on the basis of 4 criteria: 1) Academic Excellence, 2) Overcoming Adversity, 3) Entrepreneurial Skills, 4) Contribution to Charity or Community.

I was asked to give a speech, which I would like to share to you below:

I feel very proud that everything I have done has led me to this point.

At the age of 17, I had several options available to choose from for further education, including English Literature and Art. I owe a lot to two key people, among others, who as IT professionals and educators intrigued my interest in pursuing IT at university and as a career. My IT teacher at high school pushed me from GCSEs to do ICT and as a result, I thought I would at least attend a computing taster day at Brunel University, before I made my choice. This is where I met Robert Macredie, who took the time to speak to me that day… and continually supports me to this day. That taster session made my decision for me, I wanted to explore IT. It is now my hope… as I go forward in my life, that I can be that person who supports and encourages future generations.

There are so many developments happening in all corners of our industry, such as autonomous vehicles and blockchain technologies that are on the cusp of being everyday norm, and something that could be very beneficial to our society.

Likewise, I think it is likely there will be further developments in how IT is viewed as we all become more dependent on it. My experiences on my placement year at GSK, helped to teach me how important it is to have a good relationship with the rest of a business, therefore by creating that transparency and having that communication is something I aim to do in my career. I hope there will also be progress in widening gender diversity within the IT industry. I knew going into my degree and placement year that I would be in a gender minority, spending the majority of group projects and meetings with men. I was never made to feel vulnerable or inferior, but I was still very aware of it. This isn’t the fault of the university or company, there just simply isn’t enough girls wanting to go into the technology sector and that stems from little engagement from an early age. IT isn’t a typical job that at an early age you are taught to aspire to, yet it is so important to everybody’s future, that it should be.

This is why, I particularly hope to ensure younger generations of women know they can bring a brilliant skillset, new ideas and opinions, and to be equal in all things IT. I’m excited for the future in this industry and I will do my very best to justify my receiving of this award.

I am very grateful for that opportunity and for the doors it has opened to me, such as being asked to speak at an event for International Women’s Day at the WCIT Livery Hall on 5th March.

It has encouraged me to speak further about topics I am passionate about and I hope it inspires others to trust that hard work is rewarded.