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Thomas: In electronics even the slightest change can make a difference



Thomas is in his last year of Mechatronics studies. His goals are to challenge himself, improve his English and continue learning in a different environment. He has already spent one month abroad and feels more confident with the language.





Why did you choose to study Mechatronics?

Since high school, I have always been interested in robots and programming. With this course I can learn many things about mechanics and electronics that I did not know before.


So I understand that Mechatronics is a mixed field…

Yes, is a subject that combines different disciplines such as electronics and mechanics. Mechatronic outcomes can also consists in devices that we use every day. For example, a Mechatronic device can be a robot.


What skills are important to be a Mechatronic technician?

It's really important to be flexible and to havea good knowledge in both of the main fields, Mechanics and Electronics.


Where can you work?

A classic example of company that employs Mechatronic technician is the automotive sector. However, other possibilities are working for advanced automation or in the renewable energy field.


It sounds like you have lots of possibilities, where would you like to work?

I'd like to start working for a company that uses robots and robotics to automate its production cycles. This could give me the possibility to learn more about robots and how to deal with them so that I could start my career in the robotics field.


What are the goals that you would like to achieve ?

I hope that this experience would give me the possibility to improve my conversational English and also the specific lexicon and my knowledge of robotics. As this is my first experience abroad I also hope to benefit personal improvements


Are languages important in your field?

Languages are very important as even if a technician is working in its home country there will always be a situation in which exchange of information or request to collaborate with a company from another country will appear. There has also been an episode that made me understand to which extent it's worth it to know English. Before this Erasmus+ project, I did an interview and I was asked if I felt confident speaking English and I admitted to have little knowledge, so I realised that I was not getting the job. I'm here in England to

improve.


What are you doing in your experience abroad?

We are building a drone. We chose this project because it was possible to complete it in two months and, at the same time we could improve our knowledge of electronics thanks to all the different components that are involved to make it up.


You work in a team...

Yes, to know how to work in a team is fundamental. It has helped me to solve problems

that I was not able to solve by my self as I was lacking knowledge and to work also in

an easier way. Good communication competences is the key skill as it's important to discuss with everyone about the tasks or about a different point of view to decide how to carry out the work.


Which have been your latest tasks?

Well, I helped my teammates to calibrate the drone and configure its flight controller. For what concerns the 3D printer, I looked for solutions for the different problems that we had such as the impossibility to print pieces for the drone with a smooth surface.


What have you learned til today?

Working in England allowed me to improve my confidence with the language and to learn new technical words that I didn't know. However, the most important thing that I've learned while building a drone is that in electronics even the slightest change can make a difference.

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