News and features

My Surrey experience – Ben Emeka, BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering

“The University of Surrey is definitely the key to a very bright future”

I came to Surrey after a one-year International Foundation programme at the Global International College in Nigeria. Civil engineers are responsible for designing, constructing and maintaining global infrastructures and I wanted to be a part of this. I’ve also come from a country which is still developing – and took this course so it would help me to contribute to its successful growth in the future.

I wanted to study on a campus university and Surrey offered that – and so much more. Everything was within reach: lecture rooms, coffee shops, restaurants, the state-of-the-art library, a mini supermarket, book shop and even a post office. There’s always something to do here, with over 200 societies and sports clubs at the Students’ Union. I’m definitely going to miss Surrey!

Civil Engineering as a degree isn’t easy; but you feel a great sense of achievement as you pass each year, and the support offered by academic staff is great. My supervisor provided me with guidance, and thorough feedback from coursework submissions enabled me to identify where I’d made mistakes and correct myself for future references. All the labs I’ve used were excellent and the surveying equipment is modern and well-maintained. The library includes additional learning support, group study rooms, silent study rooms, open study areas, language study areas and over 1,000 books for my course alone.

I loved applying theoretical knowledge in practical lab sessions, and also being able to work in groups – which not only created life-long friendships but also developed my inter-personal skills when communicating with other people - skills definitely necessary in preparing me for life as a civil engineer.

I’ve picked up a great deal of time-management, organisation and communication skills from Surrey, and the course has helped me to analyse situations more thoroughly. The diversity, too, is good – I’ve made friends from Kuwait, China, Malaysia, Kenya, Hong Kong, Italy, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, America and Ghana to name a few.

I’m now working at Surrey as a referral coordinator for the International Study Centre, and then I start a graduate job in September before taking my Masters next year.

Related news and features