A Busy Semester

Over the past few weeks I’ve been facing down a bigger workload than I’ve ever had to face before. I seem to be coping with it better than ever before too, though I’m still finding it tough. There are some parts I’m finding easy and some I’m finding really hard. It seemed like the first few weeks of term flew by and exams will soon be upon me.

The hardest part of my degree this semester has been Advanced Partial Differential Equations. This module is renowned as one of the hardest available for an engineer to take and in retrospect I should have chosen another. Nevertheless I seem to be coping with the material and I’m hoping for a half-decent mark in the exam.

The easiest module I have taken this semester is Advanced Computational Methods. This module is taught in a very interactive way, with Professor Fangohr demonstrating the concepts he is teaching via the projector and inviting questions and suggestions from the students. This live demonstration approach is very helpful to learn from as we get to see the code in action. We also have weekly labs to practice with.

Unfortunately the workload has left me with little time to pursue other interests. I made it to the Reinventing Space conference in Oxford a few weeks ago, where I got to do a bit of networking to help my jobhunting, but I’ve come to realise that I can’t afford to take time away from university without putting myself under even more pressure than I’m already under. A prime example of something I have had to miss out on is the Royal Aeronautical Society’s Human Spaceflight conference; I should have been there but taking a day away from university to go just wasn’t possible at the time and that was very frustrating for me. I’m hopeful that the workload will be a bit easier next semester as I’ll have one less subject to study but I expect my group design project will become more dominant, so I expect to still be under the same amount of pressure.

By the end of term last week I was feeling exhausted. A final surge in coursework, along with tests in both Advanced Partial Differential Equations and Advanced Computational Methods, left me feeling completely spent. Fortunately I have planned for this, and have joined the university surfing club for a week in Morocco. More on that soon: I’ve missed blogging and I’m keen to get back to it, and I should have something fun to share… 🙂


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