Shahin Darvishnarenjbon

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

I have started my academic career at Leeds University in 2005 by undertaking my foundation course in Math, Physics and English. Following this, I completed BEng Honors in Architectural Engineering. When deciding on my next step regarding masters studies, the choice was an easy one to make. The excellent academics - who are leading in the field of Civil and Structural Engineering -, and the level of support at the School of Civil Engineering at Leeds, the strong network of alumni and piers to connect with, were some of the many reasons that ensure me that Leeds was the right place to be. The University of Leeds is ranked among the very best Universities in the UK and the world in the field of Civil Engineering. The rich heritage of the University and what Leeds as a city has to offer makes every student love their time in Leeds. While studying at the School of Civil Engineering at Leeds, you will be made to feel at home.       

What has been the best aspect of studying on your course and at the University so far and why?

The best aspect of the course so far is to be assigned to design various structures from day one. For example, I have successfully completed a full set of structural steel calculation for the new Civil Engineering Administration Block and got to design a column and slab in reinforced concrete. My favourite of all has been the design of a bridge that would span approximately 90 meter across a deep cutting in chalk rock to carry to lane of traffic of an existing highway. These are to name few of the many challenging and exciting projects that MSc structural Engineering at Leeds would make possible to achieve.

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

For example, I have successfully completed a full set of Structural Steel calculation for the new Civil Engineering Administration Block. 

What does Leeds as a city have to offer students? 

Leeds as the third largest city in the UK has a lot to offer to students. Leeds is a vibrant city offers one of the best night life for students. There is always something on in Leeds, no matter what you are into. For entertainment, Leeds City is home to Opera North, Northern Ballet, Phoenix Dance Theater, and the First Direct Arena. In terms of sports, Leeds is home to Yorkshire Cricket, Leeds Rhinos and the John Charles Center for Sport which was used by the Chinese and Dutch Olympic teams. 

Additionally, Leeds University Union, ranked this year as the third best student Union in the UK, provides students with support and organises all sort of events constantly. There is a society for people of all interests: sports, arts, religion, culture, among many others. While studying at Leeds, we have the opportunity to get involved in varied activities that make as grow not only as professionals but also as individuals. 

What are your ambitions for the future?

First, in my long-term list of priorities are gaining charted state in Structural Engineering. Secondly, I would like to establish my career in Architectural and Structural Engineering by practising in this field. 

 I would like to work hard within the constraints to make the necessary positive changes to people lives. I want to be a leader and innovator, whereby inspiring others to think outside the box in order to solve engineering problems. 

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

Definitely, the opportunity to work on cutting-edge projects alongside some of the best academics in the UK is one of the best experiences at Leeds that will undoubtedly help me to succeed in my future career. At Leeds, I have been given the opportunity to work with the latest computer tools of the trade such as Abacus Modelling, Robot Structural analysis, which makes Structural Engineers from Leeds University more competitive in the job market. Additionally, working in Leeds University well-equipped structural engineering laboratory alongside other engineers and technicians is an experience that will help me to excel in my future career.

On the other hand, my role as School Representative during my master studies was a very teaching experience from which I enhanced my leadership and organisation skills. This was achieved by working alongside other student representatives and  liaising   between the staff and the students in order to ensure a pleasant experience for the latter during their postgraduate studies.

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

If you like to be a leader in your field of study, think outside the box, and stand out when it comes to having a career, Leeds should be your number one choice. 

Try to get involved in a variety of activities, learn from the diversity of cultures and backgrounds that you find at Leeds, and work hard! While you are at Leeds, make the most out of it: you are right in the middle of the road to success and prosperity.