Woodford house

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Engineering Design Insights

Senior physics students had the rare opportunity to learn about engineering design and its applications from Dr Shayne Gooch, Head of University of Canterbury’s Mechanical Engineering department, during his visit to the School on Tuesday 12 June.


His talk provided valuable insight for the students into the now very broad spectrum of areas that engineers focus on, which includes traditional engineering strands as well as medicine, finance, art, law and commerce.

Dr Gooch shared examples of projects he has been involved in, including engineering solutions to help people with tetraplegia to live independently and providing tertiary students opportunities to study the work of New Zealand artist Len Lye. He also talked about working as a forensic engineer to assist with reconstructing physical events, industrial product design of the Spring Free Trampoline and Life Chair, improving the life span of windmill propellers and measuring acoustic changes due to tourism in the Southern Alps.

The girls really enjoyed the presentation and two students gave the following feedback:

“The presentation by Dr Shayne Gooch really opened my eyes to the different opportunities that come with being an engineer. An engineering degree can lead you to many careers, and there is also a lot more variety in the jobs that engineers do than I expected. He gave an exciting outlook on studying engineering at the University of Canterbury and the great clubs and activities you can get involved in whilst studying. Overall he made the idea of being an engineer a very exciting option when considering career choices.” Emily Crosse, Year 13.

“Super, super helpful! Going through each type of engineering with both funny and real life examples honestly gave me such an insight. Thank you so much for coming, I’m sure it made a lot of us more certain about what kind of engineering we want to do. And perhaps even got some students to consider engineering!” Eliza Jani, Year 13.

Mrs Iresha Dona, Science Teacher