What I Learnt in My Engineering Degree - Naadiya Moosajee
Many university students enter into the field of engineering without an understanding of what it means to be an engineer or what engineers do. I admit that I fall into that category. I like many came into engineering by accident, but what I learnt, made me stay. As a civil engineer, I quickly learnt that we don't just "build the roads and bridges" which is usually a popular response to asking what a civil engineer does. Civil engineering comes from the word civilian of course. It means we work at making civilian life better, safer more convenient. This includes everything from water treatment to providing safe drinking water to transport and building communities.
I didn't know that engineers were like super heroes quietly helping societies thrive. So after 4 years, of learning a large amount of irrelevant information (this includes 2 years of Maths, physics and chemistry) I realized that engineering was not just in the text books. I would never use triple integration (2nd year Maths) or matrices but I had to take all these classes to help me think in a processed way. To think critically about problems and find an innovative solutions. These could range from the simple to the complex. I learnt that engineering opened doors for me everywhere I went. A new respect was given because one thing people do understand is that engineering is difficult. But most importantly, engineering taught me that for every problem, there is a solution. But you will only find it once you engage with other people.
Engineers solve problems collectively. We are taught to engage with the people we work with and for. We are taught to understand the communities in which we operate in to provide solutions to create a better life for all. So my engineering degree taught me how to be a better person.
To quote Spider-Man "with great power comes great responsibility. As such I have the duty to go forth and be a super hero, and engineer, who makes the world a better place.
Naadiya Moosajee - WomEng Co-Founder