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Alumni

Robin Wilson

Career Path: Systems, Development & Reporting Manager, Guildford College
Location: Guildford, UK

When leaving University, as with many other students, I was not sure what I wanted to do but knew I really enjoyed working with databases as well as general coding. Having also worked in the University library and run induction courses with the Student Union I realised I also enjoyed teaching and helping people with IT problems. With my part-time job as a starting point I then remained in the education sector working at a school and then three colleges.

What are you doing now?Robin Wilson

Currently I manage the MIS Systems Team where I run a small team of data analysts where we predominately produce SQL scripts and use these to create self-service reports for staff. I also have the opportunity to develop web applications and help to design processes and have also continued to teach having now taught consecutively for six years.

What was it about Northumbria that made you decide to study here?

Northumbria was close to home, being originally born in Newcastle, and they offered a course that sounded really interesting.

What was it like studying at Northumbria?

I was always very happy at Northumbria and felt the lectures, seminars and workshops provided a good variety of content with opportunities to get hands on. The support and guidance offered was also excellent.

How connected was your course with industry?

From memory, there were some interesting guest lectures but I mostly enjoyed the practical classes where we could get stuck in with the code. The work placement was interesting although by this time I was already developing websites for small companies.

What was the best thing about your course?

Probably the challenge of the final project and written report where I developed a syntax directed editor (spelling and grammar checker) in Esperanto. I had never created anything quite like this and it was fun to get it working in the different operating systems.

How did studying at Northumbria help you achieve your career goals/ give your career an edge?

It is always hard to evaluate whether the MSc helped me to get a job whilst the BSc was more definitely a requirement but I found the MSc challenging and fun and am happy in the job I am currently doing.

Which skills/ knowledge did you learn on your course that you use most now throughout your career?

Whilst I was partly self-taught in coding, the course taught me the correct way to do it and taught me object-oriented programming. Also the course helped to show me anything is possible if you put your mind to it and do not give up.

What did you enjoy most about your time at Northumbria University?

The hands on coding and ability to try what we had learned.

What advice would you give somebody who is thinking of studying at Northumbria?

Whilst there is never a guarantee of work whatever you do, having a degree should help to improve confidence, employability skills and help you get into a job where you are happy and enjoy the work rather than just doing it for the money. Remain positive and focused and don't leave assignments until the last minute as so many people seem to!

How would you describe your time at Northumbria in 3 words?

Challenging, interesting and rewarding.

For more information about me, visit:

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