Student Profile - Aaquib Naved

BSc Computer Science, School of Computer Science 

aaquib-naved-image"The University has a great Computer Science department, in the skills they teach you, the structure of the course and the support they offer. Each and every module is built so that you learn a lot of very applicable skills and knowledge and you never feel hesitant in asking your lecturer for advice or help when things get a little tough."  

Why did you apply to the University of Birmingham?

A few years before University, I started to hear more and more people talking about coding being an extremely useful skill in the future. When I decided to try out coding by learning Python (an object orientated programming language), I found out that I really enjoyed it. Computer Science was the next natural step on that journey. It's an incredible field with a lot of exciting developments almost every day and being able to be a part of that while simultaneously loving programming meant that studying Computer Science at the University of Birmingham has been amazing and extremely fun.

I chose the University of Birmingham for a number of reasons. The University has a great Computer Science department, in the skills they teach you, the structure of the course and the support they offer. Each and every module is built so that you learn a lot of very applicable skills and knowledge and you never feel hesitant in asking your lecturer for advice or help when things get a little tough. The city of Birmingham was a big factor as well. Being a large and diverse city, it offered much more than most other cities in the UK. Being a Muslim, having places to pray nearby and having easy access to Halal meat are key concerns and in Birmingham, those are easily addressed due to the wide availability of both.

What do you think about the School of Computer Science itself?

Overall, the teaching in the Computer Science department is fantastic. Nearly all the lecturers are very helpful and will go out of their way to support you. They create Facebook pages for each module to enable students to help each other and get hints from the lecturer and are generally available for meetings to discuss difficulties with assignments or course content.

The course content is very well structured and contains very applicable knowledge and skills for the Industry. It mixes up serious content with fun projects (like building an automated warehouse or a competitive online multiplayer game!) which makes the course very enjoyable.

What do you like to do when you are not in lectures or studying?

There is a very active student society scene at the University of Birmingham. We have over 240 student societies so you'll find something that suits your interests.

The society which I really took part in is the Islamic Society. It's a great society which is extremely active (20 committee members and over 70 activities per year!) and have recently won "Most Outstanding Society of the Year" Award at the recent Student Union Awards Night. They run social, educational and even career events for all their members. They've recently hosted Post Graduate specific events for Post Graduate student needs which has been quite pioneering for a student society. Their activities culminated last year in their "Ramadan Project" where they served free food for iftaar (breaking of the fast) for all students on campus every single day in Ramadan. It was a huge success!

Having been motivated by the great work the society has done, I joined the committee for the past 2 years and I haven't looked back. You make amazing lifelong friends whom you can really relate to and partake in some incredible experiences.

Being part of the Islamic Society has been the highlight of my time at the University of Birmingham. I can't imagine how it would have been without them.

Have you done an internship during your course?

The University of Birmingham do a great job with regards to student employment. The Computer Science department offer a number of exclusive summer and year long placement opportunities with top companies such as Capgemini and ServiceNow which really help develop your skills and make you more employable. Most Computer Science departments don't offer such opportunities.

I'm currently undertaking a summer placement with IBM (The Extreme Blue Summer Internship) and that has helped me learn a lot of new skills and gain experience in a fast paced agile development environment. IBM is a great company to work for and offer Extreme Blue Interns graduate jobs straight after the internship so an internship with IBM really secures your immediate future saving you the stress of applying to graduate positions in your final year.