Stephanie Baker

Stephanie Baker working in the lab“I wanted to study something that wasn’t going to get boring and engineering is a field that keeps moving, particularly in the area of technology because there’s always something new.”

Stephanie Baker chose to study a Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Systems* because she wanted to study a degree that would remain interesting throughout her course and into her career.

“I always wanted to do something with computers but I wasn’t sure if I wanted to focus on hardware or software and a Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Systems at James Cook University (JCU) offered both. We learn how to design the software people are going to use and on the hardware side we learn things such as programming microprocessors to read from sensors.”

One of the course highlights for Stephanie has been designing a circuit board from scratch and programming it to drive a motor.

“It was an interesting project because we got to see it right through from designing the electronics to actually making the electronics work. Another project we’re doing is making a security system with voice control and motion detection.”

She also likes the small class sizes offered at JCU and the approachability of the teaching staff.

“It’s a lot more personal and you get one-on-one time with the lecturers and tutors. They’re fantastic and most of them have an open door policy so you can just knock on their door and speak to them whenever you need help.”

As a member of the RoboClub, Stephanie has been able to expand her knowledge of electronics and programming and put them into practice.

“We do competitions where we program robots for different purposes and at the moment we’re doing robot soccer. It’s really relevant to my coursework but it’s also a great social experience and I’ve got a wider circle of friends as a result.”

Stephanie thinks one of the most exciting things happening in the field of engineering is the Internet of Things (IoT).

“It’s useful from big companies, through to your own home, and even health. It’s really interesting and it’s happening right now. It’s the way a lot of software design is going at the moment.”

When she finishes her degree, Stephanie is planning to use her qualification to embark on a career in the biomedical industry and feels JCU has helped her to develop a well-rounded set of skills.

“I have always had an interest in helping people but I don’t like blood so I want to help people using electronics and software instead. I feel prepared for the workforce because the content we have learned at JCU has been very thorough and exposed us to a range of experiences.”

*JCU now offers a Bachelor of Engineering in Electronic Systems & Internet of Things