case studies, experience, vishal

Vishal Persaud

Why did you decide to study a masters at the University of Leeds?

The Faculty of Engineering at Leeds is renowned across the United Kingdom. They offer a more holistic approach toward their curriculum. For example, the masters I am studying in Energy and Environment looks at world issues for pollution and alternative energy, how the technology has advanced over the years and what to look forward to in the future. Another key aspect that solidified my choice to come to Leeds was the fact that their masters courses are all accredited. Mine is accredited by the Energy Institute, which makes graduates more employable as they enter the working world.

What has been the best aspect of studying your course?

There have been quite a few things that have made this course an enjoyable one – from the knowledgeable professors (who have always made time to answer my questions), to the friendly colleagues that I have made along the way. The course offers a diverse learning environment, drawing on experiences from all of the world.

However, I would say that the best experience I have had so far is all the practical experience I’ve been exposed to over the year. From laboratory classes carrying out pollution analysis, to software training for atmospheric modelling. Most of all, the field trips that enlightened the class to the field of hydro, solar and bioenergy technology.

Tell us about some of the exciting projects you have completed.

One project that will stay with me is the use of Atmospheric Dispersion Modelling System (ADMS) software, which helped us model boiler emissions and see how it will affect the residents living in the vicinity surrounding it. In my final thesis, I was able to work with pyrolysis and gasification of plastics for the production of hydrogen-rich syngas. This was an amazing experience – especially as the world is considering hydrogen to be the fuel of the future.

What does Leeds as a city have to offer students?

The city of Leeds is an amazing one. It’s a bittersweet feeling to be leaving this year. Leeds has so much to offer students studying and living here – such as its vibrant nightlife and wide range of bars for all the outgoing people. Leeds also offers a diverse culture, from the Royal Armouries to Kirkstall Abbey. And for the days where the sun is out in all its glory, Hyde Park and Roundhay Park offer amazing picnic areas. For people like me who love trying new foods or the same foods with a different twist, Leeds also offers some of the best eats in all of West Yorkshire – from Reds BBQ to The Library wings and Zaaps delicious Thai food!

What are your ambitions for the future?

As I complete my masters, I am currently looking towards continuing in this research field and applying for a PhD in alternative energy and policy. I can see myself being a leading energy researcher in the future.

What experiences at Leeds do you think will help you in your future career?

The things I am learning in each module – especially in advanced renewable technology and energy management – will definitely be a great asset as I pursue my PhD. I’ve gained lots of skills over the last year, including producing presentations to writing reports and proposals that are of publishable quality.

What would you say to students coming to do the same course?

As you enter you masters or undergraduate degree, keep your mind open as you will have an amazing journey at the university (both academic life and social one). Be eager to learn and don’t be afraid to ask questions as the staff are always helpful and professional. Be sure to enjoy the numerous societies and events that the university has to offer – go for a swim, wall climbing in The Edge, rent the University Cabin with your friends in Selside and enjoy the Yorkshire Three Peaks. Be sure to check out the City of Leeds Light Night Festival, the Caribbean Carnival, and the Dock Festival amongst many others. As your journey begins, be sure to always have your camera, a notebook and an umbrella. Most of all, have fun and enjoy each moment at the University of Leeds. I guarantee you won’t regret it.