Oldřich Jandl, BEng Electronics and Electrical Engineering

What attracted you to the University of Edinburgh and this programme, in particular?

The University of Edinburgh is well-renowned and has a strong engineering department in particular. I was also attracted to Scotland in general thanks to its amazingly beautiful wilderness, vast mountain regions, lochs and coastline. Choosing engineering was a result of me wanting to use my logical and analytical thinking for a practical cause and I especially liked the cleanliness and microscale precision of electronics engineering.

What one thing would you recommend new students at the University of Edinburgh do?

Explore the city on foot and find your favourite park, café, or local store. Also, buy a second-hand bike to save a lot of time commuting.

What aspects of student life do you enjoy the most and why?

The flexibility and level of independence are great. You can take on as much or as little as you want on any given day and this decision is entirely up to you.

What do you most like about studying here?       

I believe that it is the people studying, teaching and working at this university who make it such a unique, valuable and enjoyable experience.

What do you find most challenging and most rewarding about your programme?

The most challenging parts of my programme are exams during which students must demonstrate their understanding of a wide range of advanced topics within a limited time frame. The most rewarding aspect though is to see a circuit functioning correctly after you’ve spent weeks meticulously designing every feature.

What is your favourite course so far and why?

That must be "Digital Systems Laboratory", one of the more practical courses. Within 10 weeks we went from not knowing anything about a new programming language to coding our very own Snake game from scratch!

How would you describe the practical elements of the programme?

Personally, I consider lab sessions to be the most enjoyable part of my programme and I couldn’t imagine an engineering degree without them. I have spent a lot of hours in our electronics labs over the years and with enough patience, you will learn a lot about how to apply the knowledge from theoretical lectures to practical systems. 

What are your tips for student life in Edinburgh?

Find a group of like-minded individuals to hang out with in your free time who also respect your work, study and hobby commitments. If your friends would like to explore the city and country with you, that’s even better!

Can you tell us of any personal of professional achievements during your studies?

I finished my first-ever Marathon race along Loch Ness. I also achieved 2nd Dan black belt level with Edinburgh University Taekwondo Club in my third year.

Have you undertaken an industry placement as part of your studies? What were the highlights?

In two consecutive summers, after 2nd year and 3rd year, I was an intern at Arm in Cambridge, with is a large computer architecture company. I enjoyed the feeling of going into beautiful offices every morning, networking with a large cohort of interns as well as seeing material from "Digital Systems Laboratory" in a professional setting on a much larger scale. I learned a lot by simply talking to my experienced colleagues and realised the process of learning is truly never-ending during a career.

Did the placement help you define your future career choices?

Yes, doing two very different summer projects I experienced what it is like to be both a software engineer and a hardware engineer. I managed to better identify my strengths as well as realising I really want my career to be towards the more practical side of things.

How is your programme equipping you for your future career?

My programme makes sure to cover every potential area of specialisation of this discipline, which is so wide in terms of opportunities. I’ve had detailed exposure to many topics to find out which ones I enjoy the most and which I want to further pursue. Studying at The University of Edinburgh taught me a balanced mix of practical skills as well as the necessary theoretical foundations. The programme has also given us an introduction on professional skills, which become so useful in the workplace.

What advice would you give to anyone thinking of studying at the University of Edinburgh?

Choosing to study at The University of Edinburgh was a great decision for me which I am very grateful for in retrospect. I believe and hope that you will feel the same, should you decide to do so as well. Studying here gives you a high level of academic knowledge for your future career and a wide range of options and opportunities also enables you to experience student life at its fullest.