Hands-on science for Brighton students

Young people with an interest in science and engineering can learn how to turn their passion into a career at a science fair in Brighton tomorrow (11 July).

Big Bang @ Brighton will take place at the University of Brighton and organisers are promising “an exciting, colourful and noisy event” aimed at encouraging more students to pursue further studies and potential careers in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).

Organised by STEM Sussex, the University of Brighton’s STEM outreach department, the event is funded by the Sussex Learning Network’s National Collaborative Outreach Programme (NCOP), a four-year programme aimed at encouraging more young people, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, into higher education.

Big Bang @ Brighton will feature a range of hands-on activities, workshops and shows provided by many local companies, universities and colleges and other organisations, highlighting the STEM-related opportunities available to young people in the area. Read More

Reflecting on a placement year

Final year student, Becky Rush, had a busy and exciting year on placement at BBC News last year. Now back for her final year, Becky reflects on her time at the BBC.

“Throughout my placement at BBC News I had the opportunity to work with talented developers and significantly improve my skills in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript – to name just a few. I worked on projects which are published in over 20 languages on the BBC News website and seen by hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. I was even given the opportunity to be the lead developer on my own project, which has been a fantastic learning experience!”

You can find out more about Becky’s placement as she kept us posted during her time at the BBC from an exciting project she developed to the anticipation and initial thoughts on starting her placement.

Trends, technology and university life

In a recent article in University Life, Dr John Kingston, senior lecturer in Information Systems and Business Computing here at Brighton, joins the discussion about trends in technology at university and student and employer expectations.

One of the points the article makes is that 92% of CIOs think current IT recruitment needs are not being met by education, resulting in a £63bn cost to the UK economy (from a study by Robert Half UK).

At Brighton we have been using Mendix to help our students understand the requirements needed to design mobile applications, without the knowledge of coding, to address this.

“We use Mendix to teach students how to use software applications and the principles of applications without teaching them programming,” explains Dr. John Kingston, Senior Lecturer in Information Systems and Business Computing at the University of Brighton. “Mendix requires students to learn how to structure data, create workflow diagrams and specialised user interfaces.

“However, when they’re finished, they just press a button and it creates the application. We are using it with first-year Business Computing students, which has resulted in one student getting a summer job with Brighton City Council.”

You can ready the full article here.

University’s privacy protection success

The University of Brighton has helped develop a new software system that empowers citizens to take control of how their private information is used.

Hospitals in Spain and Italy, and government departments in France, Italy and Greece, have successfully applied the new platform in pilot projects, and the European Union has asked for presentations highlighting key aspects and successes.

Funded by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 programme, the two-year ‘VisiOn: Visual Privacy Management in User-Centric Open Environments’ project has concluded with the successful development of a visual privacy management platform that enables citizens and public administrations to understand and visualise their privacy needs. It identifies conflicts with regard to different privacy needs and privacy laws and it provides warnings to citizens and organisations informing them of potential privacy breaches.

Read More

What makes Hove, actually?

Members of the public are being invited to come up with ideas as to what makes Hove Hove.

Workshops are planned for people to suggest stories and objects for the Hove Plinth, a new cultural attraction on the historic Hove seafront designed to showcase the best in modern day sculpture.

The University of Brighton is working with sculptor Jonathan Wright who is creating the plinth’s ‘Constellation’, a mechanical model of the solar system and iconic images associated with Hove.

University experts are supporting Jonathan in the Constellation’s final design using 3D technologies for the digitisation of the icons and production of the sculpture.

Dr Karina Rodriguez Echavarria, Senior Lecturer in the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics, said: “We are supporting Jonathan with our expertise in 3D technologies for digitising cultural heritage and enabling the production of the icons for the sculpture.”

“We are holding a series of workshops in the Brighton and the Hove museums in the next two weeks and we would like members of the public, our students and staff, to come along and tell us their views on the most exciting, relevant or significant places and landmarks in Hove that make it special and interesting, and to tell us what objects communicate why it is a place to be proud of.”

The Hove Museum workshops are on 24 October, 10am to 12 noon and 2pm to 4pm. Brighton Museum workshops are on 31 October, 10am to 12 noon and 2pm to 4pm.

Bring a photograph, digital or printed, displaying suggested objects. To attend, email Jonathan at jhhwright@me.com stating preferred session.

The plinth has been crowdfunded and is supported by the Hove Civic Society. For more information go to: http://www.hovecivic.org.uk/shaping-future/public-sculpture/hove-plinth-our-vision and http://www.hovecivic.org.uk/sites/hovecivic.org.uk/files/Hove%20Plinth%20infopack%202017-03-08%20Constellation.pdf

 

A winning placement year

Arun receiving his award

Arun Sharma is currently on placement as a junior software engineer at West Control Solutions, and is one of two recipients of the Lancia Consult Award for Excellence in a Computing Placement Year at our school awards ceremony.

We caught up with Arun, a student on our Computer Science (Games) course, to find out more about his placement and life at Brighton.

“I’ve always wanted to explore a degree with an emphasis on games, and Brighton offered me the chance to do so, with the opportunity to transfer from a partner college to the second year of the Computer Science (Games) course here.

Highlights of the course for me include the variety of lecturers and their well-established backgrounds, and the 3D Graphics and Animation and the Intelligent Systems modules. Intelligent Systems not only provided a glimpse into game development but also other real-world applications.

I must also recommend the placement year; regardless of any computing course you apply for. It expands your knowledge, allows you to make new contacts as well as possibly having a job offer at the end of it!

The placement office was absolutely excellent, consistently reviewing and offering improvements to my CV and offering mock interviews and tips. I am currently on placement at West Control Solutions as a junior software engineer. The Computer Systems Architecture module has been invaluable for my placement, giving me a solid understanding hardware basics for computer systems. I have already formulated a final year project using the technologies and programming languages I have acquired on placement.

I plan to use my course to get into the games industry. In addition to this, there is a possibility I may pursue a masters in Software Engineering using this degree as a base.”

Congratulations to Arun on his achievements so far!