4 January 2021
Developing skills to handle any situation in the working world is a key aspect of studying at university. Harper Adams students learn many of these in their placement year, learning from their coworkers and from seeing the theory they learnt in the classroom at play.
Matthew Torok, a third year MEng Automotive Engineering (Off-Highway) student, has found this to be true working at his placement employer Peregrine MLS. Here, he shares about his love of engineering and placement experience so far.
Matthew said: “I have been interested in engineering from a young age; my family has several classic cars that I have helped work on and I have also developed my own engineering projects.
“The workshop drew me to Harper Adams as, once you have training on the machines, we are allowed a lot of freedom to develop skills further, as well as getting involved in the clubs, including a motorsport club, rally team and 4x4 off road club.”
Along with the excellent facilities, Matthew saw the benefit of puzzling out a problem and solving for himself in a hands-on way as a benefit to his future career. He commented: “My course is all about practical learning of tools and techniques to enable us to engineer solutions, in theory and in practice.
“There is a real focus on practical learning, showing why engineering principles occur, and creating real world examples to practice techniques on.”
He advises others interested in studying engineering at Harper Adams to make full advantage of the facilities and to get involved with projects inside and outside of the classroom as much as possible.
As a result of this practice, Matthew has been able to develop these skills and flourish at Peregrine MLS. He shared: “I am working as a Cad Cam engineer.
“I have helped set up a new manufacturing facility, featuring some of the latest Mazak CNC machines, and I have been trained to use Hypermill, one of the top CAM programs, to use for sending work to the machines. A lot of the parts we have been creating are for classic F1 cars, global fluid transfer systems companies, electric motor manufacturers and supercar components.
“I have been really enjoying my placement, although it has been very challenging. Being in a start-up facility I don’t have a senior CAM engineering to turn to for help.
“Harper Adams has given me the tools I need to face unfamiliar problems and find a solution that is appropriate.”
With another year until he completes his degree, Matthew’s placement year has opened his eyes to multiple opportunities within his chosen field. He said: “Looking to the future, after my degree, I am unsure exactly where I want to end up.
“I like the idea of a job within automotive engineering, hence the choice of my degree. I am also really enjoying the CAD CAM work that I am doing currently, so I am very open to continuing with this further after my placement. It all depends on the opportunities I am offered or that are created when I am looking for a future job!”
You can find out more about our engineering degree pathways here.