My Main Tasks
The main tasks of my job are lecturing and research; the two are not independent as they cross and influence each other. This is what research-led teaching means; a strategy I have adopted in all my courses. To do what I do it takes a high level of technical knowledge, management and multi-tasking skills; most importantly passion and perseverance towards the achievements of goals. Frequently (especially in research) things do not go the right way; the field of metal additive manufacturing is moving fast, there are many technological unknowns yet to be explored and it is not easy to maintain a place alongside the international front line. It will take some courage and critical thinking to design new ways that will allow to jump the many hurdles.
The administrative part of my job is never too welcome. Fortunately, the school I am part of in Trinity (School of Engineering) provides good support on this end.
Who Influenced Me
That is a little hard to say, but I do feel it was somehow in my guts since I was a child and related to my strong passion for cars. I must have been 7 years old, I remember asking to my dad: “dad, who makes cars?” The answer was “a mechanical engineer, son”. Since then my dream was to become a mechanical engineer, and I did. I am now a university professor and I would have certainly never guesses that at the age of 7, however my path was forged during that time period. I do not think this has to be the case for everybody, but it was for me.
Yes i do have a good work-life balance ,but it does take some time to learn how to balance all. We need all in life (such as family and leisure), not only work. I used to play a lot or soccer, now less but I have also implemented other activities.
Most Useful Aspects of my Eductaion
The courage of leaving my country to try new experiences abroad. I did an Erasmus during my university studies, and I loved it! I did learn so much, from another language and new sports down to new cultures and ways of living. When I came back home I was a gear ahead of everybody, and it felt somewhat tight. I needed to leave again, which I did and have not come back since nor regretted.The Erasmus programme has shaped the myself of today, and has provided the foundations for my current profession and family (we were all born in different countries!).
Useful Work Experience
Academic positions are very competitive, and will take some hard work to get there. Having a PhD is fundamental, alongside 3 to 4 years as post-doctoral experience and ideally in a different place to your PhD location. Having a competitive publications track record (as by the current career stage) will considerably help, alongside awards and experience in research proposals writing and submission.