Graduate Profiles

Check out the stories of some of our recent graduates and see where a degree from the School of Mathematics & Computer Science at the University of Wolverhampton could take you!

Anna Nikiel - Operational Research Analyst at HM Revenue & Customs

Anna Nikiel

Anna graduated from the University of Wolverhampton in 2012 with a B.Sc. (Hons) in Mathematics (with industrial placement)

Why did you decide to study at the University of Wolverhampton?

‌‌I always enjoyed maths at school and wanted to take it further. The modules offered by the University of Wolverhampton looked interesting and seemed to cover a wide range of subjects, which, I thought would be stretching and fascinating to study.

 

Did the degree live up to your expectations?

 

Yes! I learned a lot, had the opportunity to ask questions during tutorials and put my knowledge into practise during my industrial placement. The course was enjoyable and the skills and qualifications I gained made it possible for me to follow my chosen career path.

 

What did employers think about your degree from the University of Wolverhampton?

 

Employers liked the breadth of areas and topics covered in the course i.e. Pure/Applied Maths, Statistics and Operations Research (O.R.). I was quite surprised to learn that many Maths graduates would not normally study O.R. modules. Being able to demonstrate knowledge of O.R. techniques helped me to stand out from the crowd. The study of O.R. & Statistics modules also made it easier for me to pick up projects requiring some expertise in these areas and my employer values that flexibility.

 

What's a typical day at work like for you?

 

We follow the project based working methods, so what I do during the day depends on the stage my project is at. During scoping, a lot of work is about learning what is required, why, and how it is going to be used and whether it is achievable in required time scales. Planning stage is similar, but emphasis is placed more on availability of resources and interaction with other projects.

 

The maths comes to play during the ‘implementation’ stage; some examples of my previous projects involved building regression models, designing evaluation methodology or selecting target groups for intervention. The projects are very varied in duration and complexity. Normally, the project is concluded by a ‘review’ stage – when we gather customer feedback and document our work.

 

What advice would you give to students thinking about studying a mathematics degree at the University of Wolverhampton?

 

Go for it – put the effort in, know what you want to get out of it and plan well in advance.

 

 

 

Brian Cugelman - Senior Scientist & Director at AlterSpark Canada

Brian Cugelman

Brian graduated from the University of Wolverhampton in 2010 with a Ph.D. in Cybermetrics

Why did you decide to study at the University of Wolverhampton?

I was working for the United Nations in Bonn, Germany, running global online campaigns and overseeing large-scale web projects, when I started looking for opportunities to complete a PhD about social change on the Internet. Having evaluated numerous Universities, I settled on the University of Wolverhampton, which offered a Ph.D. in Cybermetrics, under one of the world’s leading Internet research groups. At the time, my field was dominated by softer sciences, which is why I felt the Statistical Cybermetrics Research Group was the right environment to carry out my research through harder scientific methods.

 

Did the degree live up to your expectations?

 

No, it exceeded my expectations by a long stretch. During my Doctorate, I was afforded a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take a deep dive into a topic I’m passionate about, with world class support and supervision.

 

Which aspects of the degree did you enjoy most?

 

During my Doctorate, I enjoyed the opportunity for independent learning, and making my own decisions about the direction of my research. However, I would have become quickly lost, blocked, and overwhelmed if it were not for the amazing support from my supervisors. I also enjoyed the opportunity to explore a wide variety of research methods and substantive topics, which paved the way for me to undertake a statistical meta-analysis that was subsequently published in the world’s top e-health journal.

 

What advice would you give to students thinking about studying a mathematics degree at the University of Wolverhampton?

 

If you’re thinking of Wolverhampton for a Masters or Undergraduate Degree in maths, and like the sound of Cybermetrics, I can confidently say you’re unlikely to find a better place in the world. For other types of maths, I can just share my personal experience. During my Doctorate, I built my maths/stats skills up from the ground up, by sitting in on numerous undergraduate stats courses at the University of Wolverhampton, and also taking various maths/stats workshop at other institutions. After two years, I had learned so many statistical methods that I was able to complete a statistical meta-analysis, which is an advanced statistical method that needs a deep understanding of many different statistical methods. Thanks to the network at Wolverhampton, I was able to complete this research project that I can only describe as the toughest act of statistics in my life. However, after a project like this, all other research becomes easy. I had a great experience, and if you chose the people you study under wisely, you can too.

 

Wan Jing Low - Ph.D. Student in Statistics

Wan Jing Low

Wan Jing graduated from the University of Wolverhampton in 2013 with a B.Sc. (Hons) in Mathematics

Why did you decide to study maths at the University of Wolverhampton?

 

I chose the University of Wolverhampton because I was intrigued by the modules which not only integrated essential theoretical knowledge of mathematics but also included the various practical applications. There are opportunities to learn the applications of many different mathematical and statistical software systems, which could be useful in the future as we embark our journey into the working world.

 

Did the degree live up to your expectations?

 

Yes! We have an amazing team of experienced professional lecturers, who are not only knowledgeable, but also friendly and approachable! Besides studying, there are also available opportunities to get work experience. My journey throughout my degree has also allowed me to meet people from all over the world, make new friends, learn and share the experiences and traditions of different cultures.

 

Which aspects of the degree did you enjoy most?

 

I enjoyed the challenge to learn new things especially the different software systems, and being able to relate mathematics to solving problems in the real world! Maths is not that boring scary subject! In fact it is a wonderful tool used every day and applied almost everywhere. Its capabilities are endless if you understand and make the most of it. What we learn could potentially help solve tomorrow’s problem today!

 

What’s a typical day at work like for you?

 

Currently, I do a lot of research in developing statistical models for citation data. I have extensively expanded my knowledge on using some mathematical software systems. I am also a part time assistant in the maths support centre, which provides mathematics-related knowledge assistance to the university community. This has given me the opportunity to see how maths is applied in all the various fields from science, engineering, health care, business and many more.

 

What advice would you give to students thinking about studying a mathematics degree at the University of Wolverhampton?

 

If you have a passion for maths then go for it! Maths is an amazing subject with great potential for application. There is a great team of lecturers to guide you, a friendly learning environment and I have really enjoyed my time here. I hope you will too!

 

Rebecca Felton - Graduate Technical Project Manager at ATOS

Rebecca Felton

Rebecca graduated from the University of Wolverhampton in 2014 with an M.Sc. in Mathematics

Why did you decide to study maths at the University of Wolverhampton?

 

When trying to decide where to study at, I attended multiple open days; and found that staff at the University of Wolverhampton were the most friendly and comfortable to be around. I was always certain on studying Mathematics as I had enjoyed it throughout school and college.

 

Did the degree live up to your expectations?

 

Going into the course, I expected to: learn new skills, meet new people and develop my existing abilities; the degree lived up to all of these expectations. I thoroughly enjoyed my time at the University of Wolverhampton, so much so that I stayed on for an extra year to complete an MSc in Mathematics. I felt that the staff were very supportive and always had time to help should I require any further assistance.

 

Which aspects of the degree did you enjoy most?

 

I particularly enjoyed the Statistics and Operations Research modules. Aspects of both arise in my current role. I also enjoyed the finance module and disease modelling module within the MSc – it was useful to relate mathematical knowledge and understanding to real life situations.

 

Was it difficult to find a job after graduation?

 

If you are looking to apply for a graduate job it would be useful to begin looking after your second year or sandwich year. I began applying for graduate positions when I started my Master’s degree and was given a job offer in January 2014 to start in October 2014. It is important to practise the online assessments as they can be quite daunting. Also, be aware that the interview processes are vigorous – there are: comprehensive application forms, online tests, telephone interviews and finally assessment centres.

 

What advice would you give to students thinking about studying a mathematics degree at the University of Wolverhampton?

 

You will make some amazing friends and get excellent support from staff and other students. If you pursue the MSc Mathematics degree you may also be given the opportunity to work in the Mathematics support centre to help to support other people on your course.

George Asbridge - Mathematics Teacher at Moreton School

George Asbridge

George graduated from the University of Wolverhampton in 2012 with a B.Sc. (Hons) in mathematics

 

Why did you decide to study maths at the University of Wolverhampton?

 

I wanted to give myself a good chance of moving into a high powered, professional career. I had heard that Wolverhampton University delivered a Maths degree from one of my old school friends, who was on the course and recommended it highly. My decision was confirmed, when I visited on an open day, and spoke to tutors about the course and how suitable it would be to meet my needs.

 

Did the degree live up to your expectations?

 

The degree more than exceeded my expectations. The maths was thorough and challenging and the tutors were personable. The support that you need to pass a maths degree was always available from tutors and then I was lucky to make good friends, that I could work with and ask questions of. The degree gave us different points of focus, covering statistics used in industry, pure maths, network analysis and operational research. Lecturers want interaction and dialogue from students and made lectures as informal as possible. The experience was the opposite to my knowledge of other universities where there is little support and massive lecture halls.

 

Which aspects of the degree did you enjoy most?

 

The well-structured lectures and notes made by supportive staff, as I always wanted to achieve as much as possible. I really enjoyed making friends in a relatively small cohort of students on the degree. It felt personal – I didn’t feel like a number on a spreadsheet. I lived away from home, partied (on the BOOM bar crawls) and joined sports clubs (cricket and ultimate frisbee), to which I still have affiliations to this day (I still play in the Wolverhampton uni Graduate frisbee team). The amount of contact time in lectures was very reasonable and then in my free time I was able to work through the maths at my own pace.

 

Was it difficult to find a job after graduation?

 

I went straight to train to be a teacher through Wolverhampton University on the PGCE. I trained to teach Maths and then found a job for the following year midway through my training. Maths teachers are in demand and so if it is the right career for you it will not be difficult to get a job.

 

What advice would you give to students thinking about studying a mathematics degree at the University of Wolverhampton?

 

If the course is suitable for your needs and interests then I highly recommend you study Maths at Wolverhampton. The tutors are supportive. Get in touch with them and you will soon find out what I mean. The degree is about allowing all to enjoy learning Maths, through good teaching and good support networks. Links I have made with my tutors have enabled me to enhance the learning of my current pupils as I regularly visit the University for enrichment sessions and open days.

 

Students & Staff visit Bletchley Park

Students & Staff recently visited Bletchley Park and the National Museum of Computing to experience all things cryptographic & computational. A great day was had by all! Special thanks to Tony Proctor for organising the trip and to the Mathsoc for reminding everyone to book their place before the deadline! In the image below you can see a group of final year mathematics students in front of the Wolverhampton Instrument for Teaching Computing from Harwell, better known as the WITCH.

WITCH

DataFest a Huge Success!

Students from across the School of Mathematics & Computer Science took part in a 48 hour data hackathon called DataFest. The event was organised by Dr. Patricia Davies as part of Career Development Week. Partcipants also included a group of students from Aschaffenberg University of Applied Science in Germany who travelled over specially to take part. Sponsorship was provided by the IEEE and the Faculty of Science and Engineering. The event required teams of students to work for 48 consecutive hours to generate insight from large data sets. In the image below you can see the fresh faces of the participants at the outset!

 DataFest