Rebecca Gray

'My goal is to have a career full of new challenges and constant learning...'

  • Rebecca Gray

Bachelor of Engineering with Honours in Mechanical Engineering

PhD Student, Princeton University, New Jersey, USA

Rebecca is thoroughly excited about her studies at Princeton University thanks to receiving a Graduate Fulbright Scholarship for Science and Innovation.

‘My goal is to have a career full of new challenges and constant learning. This is why I am doing a PhD, to teach me how to research and how to continue applying what I learn to new projects.’

She will be studying within the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department for her PhD as an extension of her studies at UC in Mechanical Engineering.

‘I am looking to specialise in Control Engineering and Dynamic Modelling, which I think is fascinating because it can be applied to areas outside of engineering, such as studying the human body and natural phenomenon,’ she says. ‘One of my potential supervisors is looking at the communication of bees when they move hives, as well as working with dancers and composers and looking at the mathematics of their creative decisions.’

To support her studies, Rebecca also received the J R Templin Travelling Scholarship (administered by the New Zealand Guardian Trust Co. Ltd) to cover travelling costs and the First Year Fellowship in Natural Sciences and Engineering from Princeton University.

Choosing to study Engineering at UC was an easy choice for Rebecca.

‘I chose Canterbury because of the two main engineering schools in New Zealand Canterbury had the better university lifestyle. I like that the campus had its own suburb and student area. I also wanted to move away from home to somewhere different.’

Rebecca found the social aspect of her courses her favourite part of UC, advising potential students to ‘see your classmates as your peers rather than your competition’.

‘I think we worked together really well and had a good sense of humour,’ she says, ‘so although an engineering degree is a lot of work and hours it was fun because you were with your friends the whole time.’

Rebecca absolutely recommends students take the opportunity to study overseas if given the chance.

‘Anyone who is considering studying in the US should definitely apply! I don’t think people in New Zealand realise how accessible the US education system is to us.

‘My lecturers were invaluable in helping me getting accepted into Princeton. They gave me advice and encouragement throughout the entire process. I don’t think I would have had the confidence to apply if it wasn’t for them.’

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