Unique experience like no other
I was excited to move to England or Scotland to study at a University in a big City. Product Design Engineering in particular appealed to me, with Glasgow being my UCAS first choice. It wasn't until after I applied through UCAS that I heard about degree-apprenticeships. I decided on The Dyson Institute after a good deal of deliberation. While the social and sports aspects of a big university appealed to me, here I receive a salary, pay no tuition fees, and experience something that no other institution could rival. I planned ways of compromising for the things I might miss out on, such as joining local sports teams and moving to Bristol in my second year.
I was surprised to find that the students were so varied. Many, like me, hadn't done any engineering previously and I was pleased to meet others (in such a small cohort) who had similar hobbies like art or hockey. Also, with a dedicated social team and funding, I found social life here to be packed, with a really good variety of stuff to do. Living in Bristol now I go out most weekends, but do stay after work in Malmesbury some evenings for events such as a table quiz or art session organised by our student body.
I also expected work to be impossible. But while the workplace is challenging, it's really satisfying when you can contribute to real projects. I've picked up so many other skills in the workplace too that I hadn't considered before, and think I'll be really confident going into other jobs in the future.