Michael praises the lecturers and the small class sizes made it easy to get one on one time with them, they are always there and are always helpful
Michael Tobin from Mullinavat, Co Kilkenny is a recent graduate of the BEng (Hons) Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering course and is currently working as a graduate engineer
Q. Why did you decide to come to college here?
A. I didn’t really know what college I wanted to go to so I decided to stay local and go to WIT after hearing good things about the college and the course, and I couldn’t fault it over the four years to be honest.
Q. Why Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering?
A. I was always interested in mechanical stuff and had always wanted to be a mechanic but for long term the money wouldn’t be great but I still wanted to do something mechanical. There was mechanical and there was mechanical and manufacturing, so I said I may as well broaden my horizon and do the two of them. It was broad so it covered a lot of stuff.
Q. Did you come straight from school?
A. Yes, I came straight from secondary I didn’t take a year out.
Q. Did you come to any of the open days?
A. Yeah I came down to the open day and it looked good. I went down to Cork and up to Dublin and these places looked huge so I picked Waterford because it was a bit smaller and I knew the class sizes would not be as big, which is way better, you get to know the lecturers and they know you which makes it easier to get help.
Q. Did you move down to Waterford?
A. No I didn’t, I would drive up and down which was only a 40 minute drive with traffic about 15 minutes without so if I had a later lecture it was easy to get in and out.
Q. What stands out for you in your experience in WIT?
A. The lecturers. I couldn’t fault them. The small classes made it easy for one on one help if you needed it and they’re always helpful. You get friendly with them then too so if you need any help you can go up to them outside of lectures or send them an email and there would be no bother.
Q. Where did you go on work placement?
A. I was over in Ferrybank in ABP in the beef processor. I was in maintenance there and it wasn’t too bad. It was a good experience. You are thrown in the deep end so it is a great place to get some experience. It was tough but defiantly my best experience and getting somewhere local was great.
Q. Where are you working now?
A. I am over in Ferrybank again as a graduate engineer. I am doing a lot of process engineering, project management, and running the line and a bit of maintenance too.
Q. What’s the long term plan?
A. Stay where I am to finish the graduate programme which is two years and see how things are going and go from there. Maybe go up the country or over the England to travel a little. There is currently a shortage of engineers so there are plenty of opportunities.
Q. How do you feel about graduating today?
A. It is good to be done, I have put in the work over the last four years it is good to have something to show for it and have a proper send off and recognition for what you have done.
Q. What advice would you give to someone thinking about doing your course?
A. It’s not as scary as everyone thinks, I had to get maths grinds to scrape through the leaving cert and thought this course would be a lot of maths but when you get in here it’s a different ball game, you don’t have to be extremely book smart for this course a lot of this course is also common sense which I enjoyed.
Interviewed at Conferring 2019 by Áine Byrne