Mahesh Dissanayake, pursuing his passion in BEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering
Making the decision to move half-way around the world is a tough one, but motivation, confidence and passion for your subject make it a lot easier. After Mahesh found the highly specialised BEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering he wanted to study at LSBU, he made the trip, found his feet and is now well on the way to a first-class degree in Engineering.
Originally from Sri Lanka, Mahesh felt ready for a challenge after completing his high-school studies. The international foundation course meant that he could start to study the subject he loves more quickly, and this course became the base for his further studies. He first decided on LSBU after he read about the engineering department's great reputation and highly ranking courses, and the attraction of London's world city status meant that of the options available to him across Europe, this was the one that really stood out.
With his father being an engineer, Mahesh has been interested in all things electronic and mechanical from a young age. The constantly changing nature of technology really captivates him, and his dad's influence means he's also highly motivated to succeed.
"I've always loved electronics, and the course in Electrical and Electronic Engineering is perfect for me as I have a great interest in robotics in particular. I spend a lot of time in the library and we have to do lots of our own research, but I'm really interested in my course and I think it's paying off – my grades have been really good."
"I'm really pleased with the facilities here, especially the library. The labs are good too, there's definitely enough facilities for everyone on the course."
Seeking a change of pace and wanting to meet new people, London's lifestyle and diversity really appealed to Mahesh. Although moving to London was a big change, he was able to adjust easily - "the staff at LSBU were very helpful, he says, "thanks to them I had a great start here. London has definitely lived up to my expectations. I've had to adapt, but living here is a great opportunity – socially, culturally and professionally."
It's safe to say that Mahesh is absolutely loving meeting a huge range of people and is really enjoying what London has to offer.
"I go out to the movies, see friends and have parties – when I can anyway, because my degree means I study a lot too. I have good connections across my class and as international student here I've met so many different people from all different countries."
"The best thing is you get easy access to all the lecturers. If I request an appointment, it's a maximum of 3 days wait. I have friends at other universities, and they've said they've had to wait a month before and then only had 40 minutes. I've had a 1.5 hour discussion with my lecturer before about various topics and sometimes I can get an appointment instantly."
Mahesh also feels that the staff help foster a supportive and helpful atmosphere within his department, which is something that's true across LSBU. "The teachers are very enthusiastic about their subjects", he explains, "they love to talk and teach, it's fantastic."
Mahesh is in his second year of being course representative at the Student Union. This offers him the chance to take any student issues further with the course directors and the university hierarchy, in order to get them addressed. "I'm the link between the students and the lecturers. If anyone has a problem about the course or anything about their degree they can come to me, and I'll do my best to get it resolved."
A real passion for his subject means Mahesh is keen to take his studies as far as possible, with the aim of one day perhaps being a lecturer or researcher.
"It depends on whether I can get a scholarship or a sponsor but I would like to do my PhD and if I got a chance to do that here then I definitely would. It's more or less like home to me here. To continue with research and to lecture is my dream job, and I'd love to do it in London."