Student Voice: Toby Street

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Toby Street, member of the NMITE Pioneer Cohort

My name is Toby, I am 22 years old, and I was born and raised in Devon. I have a keen interest in all thing computers, be it using them for online gaming or building them. This interest in how computers work was one of the main driving forces behind studying engineering. As I progressed through school and college, I developed more interest in the way things work, not being happy to continue until I was sure I had a broad understanding of the topic. This is one of the reasons NMITE’s integrated degree was a perfect option for me.

I hadn’t really been encouraged to go into an engineering field during school, in fact I can’t say I was really encouraged to think about my future career at all. It wasn’t until my second year of college that I started really thinking about what I wanted to do with my future. I studied Maths, Computer Science and IT at college so it’s safe to say I was relatively well grounded in STEM subjects; however, no one had really spoken to me about exactly where I wanted to take them.

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Toby Street, member of the NMITE Pioneer Cohort

Towards the end of my college studies, I decided engineering would be a path I would like to pursue, however the grades I left with put a stop to that. As a result of this, I ended up going into full time employment, managing a small business for a year and a half before hearing about the opportunity NMITE was presenting. Attending an open day relatively early on, I left NMITE with my name on the mailing list and kept tabs on their progress whilst still working. After being in employment for three years the opportunity to apply arose and using the grades I had acquired at college alongside the work experience gained, NMITE offered me an opportunity nowhere else had.

There are a multitude of different attributes that make NMITE the perfect place for me. Being able to achieve a Master’s degree in three years rather than four and the 9-5 life accompanying that suit my lifestyle far better than traditional courses. On top of this the studio and teamworking approach to teaching is the ideal learning environment for me, allowing me to push my limits and gain invaluable experience for my future, whatever that may be. As I have developed and continue to develop through the course, I can see the difference that this approach to learning is having both in myself and others.

“Being able to achieve a Master’s degree in three years rather than four and the 9-5 life accompanying that suit my lifestyle far better than traditional courses. On top of this the studio and teamworking approach to teaching is the ideal learning environment for me.”

The incredible generosity shown in the form of the bursaries myself and my peers received have been more help than I can effectively put into words. It has given many of us, myself included, a path into this level of education, removing that looming sense of dread so often created by financial worries. If not for the bursary I received I would need another source of income to support my studies, in my case I would’ve needed to find a job as my family can’t help me in that manner. This would’ve led to me not being able to put as much of my time and focus into my studies and ultimately my education and wellbeing would have suffered.

I strongly believe that this course is going to set me up with the necessary skills to do anything that I set my mind to in the future, engineering related or not. Not only am I being provided with the skillset to be a successful engineer, but I am also being taught how to be a successful person. Having said this, I would like to pursue a career in engineering, most likely in the mechatronics field as that’s where a lot of my interest lies. This doesn’t mean that I am not keeping my options open, I am being introduced to a lot of new things, some things I’ve never even heard of before so it’s safe to say that my prospects and goals are definitely subject to change!