"These experiences have allowed me to use my interest in filmmaking to make informative videos about our work."
- Degree: Bachelor of Applied Science
- Campus: Vancouver
Year: 4th year as of August 2023
Why did you want to study engineering?
In high school I got very interested in renewable energy and solar panel technology. I wanted to learn more about these areas and studying engineering was a way to do that.
How did you choose Materials Engineering?
Although Materials Engineering wasn’t my first choice of study, I have no regrets at all because it’s worked out really well. Materials are fascinating – they are around us everywhere, and I enjoy learning about how they work, how they are produced and how they can be made more sustainably. My other main passion is filmmaking, and being in materials engineering gives me lots of interesting topics to consider making videos about!
Tell us about your fourth-year capstone project.
I was part of a group that worked with SeaBrick, a startup company that is developing bricks made of kelp rather than concrete, for use in construction projects. Unlike concrete, which is a major source of carbon dioxide emissions, kelp sequesters carbon, making it an interesting material for construction. Our job was to optimize the materials and manufacturing process to create a kelp-based brick so that the brick would be the same strength as a block of Portland cement.
The project was a great opportunity to apply all of our engineering knowledge while working with the client on this complex problem.
It was also meaningful to me because one of the company’s goals is to empower First Nations communities to harvest the kelp for the bricks. The project was a great example of how engineers use their technical knowledge to have a social impact.
Any advice for other international students moving to UBC?
It can be hard at first to be away from home and your family and culture. Try and find a community on campus – it might take some time and trial and error, but be your authentic self and you will find people you connect with.