My study abroad experience


Student profile

Illes Nigicser

"Having had a phenomenal experience studying abroad, I realised I wanted to get a taste of American corporate life during my Professional Training placement."

Entry year
2014
Study abroad location
NC State University, USA

I chose to study medical engineering because I’ve always loved natural sciences and have a special fascination with human physiology, yet I’m also drawn to maths and the physical sciences.

Surrey is a storehouse of opportunities and the more you invest, the more you benefit. With this mindset, I took the initiative to be a student rep in my first year, acting as a liaison between the medical engineering students and the Faculty. During my time here I’ve also got involved with some of Surrey’s huge range of clubs and societies, including the trampolining club and the Christian Union student society, as well as doing indoor rock climbing.

Illes Nigicser
Illes Nigicser

A friend on my course inspired me to think about studying abroad, which led to me spending my second year on the Biomedical Engineering course at NC State University in North Carolina, USA. This was a great opportunity to explore American culture and add diversity to my medical engineering education. I was placed in an international dorm where I could make friends with people across the globe, and I was inspired by the environment of collaboration and healthy competition among my fellow students on my course.

"I worked alongside the sharpest minds in the field and made some excellent connections. The experience has strengthened my interest in surgical robotics, and this is the field I’d like to pursue after graduation."

Having had a phenomenal experience studying abroad, I realised I wanted to get a taste of American corporate life during my Professional Training placement. I had developed an interest in medical robotics as a result of a summer internship and the group design project we carried out in Year 3 at Surrey, when we designed a robotic hand for trans-radial amputees. I therefore applied to US companies in this field and landed a placement in California at a medical devices start-up company called Verb Surgical Inc. This was a unique opportunity to be part of a company that is pioneering the future of surgical robotics, which is an incredibly exciting field within medical engineering.

I worked in the hardware engineering team on cross-functional projects which exposed me to three main disciplines. First, I was involved in the entire product development cycle consisting of electromechanical design, CAD modelling, prototyping, manufacturing and build. Secondly, I did initial software development and testing on the developed hardware, and lastly, I was involved with the clinical engineering team that runs clinical tests for regulatory approvals of the medical device.

Apart from the tremendous technical experience I gained, I learned how an effective corporate culture is nurtured and maintained. I worked alongside the sharpest minds in the field and made some excellent connections. The experience has strengthened my interest in surgical robotics, and this is the field I’d like to pursue after graduation.

 

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