January is a time that we reflect on the past and plan ahead for the coming year. As we recover from the festivities of the holiday season, many of us resolve to break a few bad habits and become healthier, more organised and prepared for the challenges of the year ahead.
Few of us are completely content with how the last year played out (especially when that year happens to be 2020)! Therefore, inspired by the words of famous educators and professionals, we created a list of New Year’s resolutions, specifically designed for engineers, to help make 2021 the best year it can be.
EIT’s courses and programs are carefully designed to give students the correct tools to climb the professional sector ladder. However, to truly excel, one must keep challenging oneself to discover more! Be inspired by Mahatma Gandhi in the year ahead by following his proclamation, “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever”.
Having a healthy diet and getting regular exercise is a vital part of keeping yourself mentally fit. As Buddha once said, “To keep the body in good health is a duty…otherwise we shall not be able to keep the mind strong and clear”. If it’s good enough for Buddha, it’s good enough for us!
The engineering sector constantly evolves. Therefore, EIT’s courses are continually reviewed and improved to meet the needs of industry and the employment market. As you learn, keep track of your ultimate end game and ask yourself: Am I staying on top of industry developments? And should I specialise in a new area and take on a more advanced course? Perhaps Denis Waitley stated it best when he said: “Don’t dwell on what went wrong. Instead, focus on what to do next. Spend your energies on moving forward toward finding the answer”.
As the engineering sector evolves, so does the technology that it utilises. Keep up to date with the latest developments in your particular field by subscribing to newsletters and periodicals, (including EITs)! After all, Dr. Seuss once wrote: “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go”.
It’s a truism that building up a network of industry contacts can be highly advantageous when the time comes to enter into the professional realm. In 2021, EIT is increasing industry ties to assist more students to obtain internships. As Meredith Mahoney put it, “Know where you want to go and make sure the right people know about it".
Jazz legend Herbie Hancock once said, “I’ve learned a lot from mentors who were instrumental in shaping me, and I want to share what I’ve learned”. His words convey that you shouldn’t be afraid to build a mutually beneficial relationship with a mentor. Once you have started building a network within industry, you’ll discover that most passionate professionals will get as much out of being a mentor as you will as the mentee – so approach them with confidence!
Being organised is an essential part of managing your studies throughout the year. Challenge yourself to understand where improvements can be made in your routine to maximise your time and energy. After all, Eleanor Roosevelt once said: “It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan”.
When the pressure of balancing life with study starts to mount, take joy in the opportunities for creativity within the field of engineering. Pursue opportunities to be creative in all of your endeavours or as Queen Elizabeth put it; “At its heart engineering is about using science to find creative practical solutions. It’s a noble profession.”
The years spent in higher education can be of the most stressful periods of our lives. Exams and course work deadlines can all be causes of mental health issues. Therefore, it is essential to not place too much pressure on yourself. As Miya Yamanouchi once put it, “Remember that this is YOUR LIFE, and nothing is more important than YOU”.