Robert Jensen

Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering (Honours) , 2009

I began my engineering odyssey in March 2005 as a very young adult stepping very far from my comfort zone of high school and home. At first university seemed much like school on free dress days. I attend my classes, ate a mum-made lunch (and playlunch) and went home after. The classes were big difficult to find on the map in my diary and I was no longer one of the smarter kids in them. Still being in VCE mode I proceeded to do every scrap of work that was thrown my way, ignoring the posters for events such as balls, cruises and other society events that littered the walls of Clayton. It wasn’t, however, fun.

Working part time around a 5 day timetable plus study time whilst trying to do things outside of University all just to gain a HECS debt? I could see the reasoning of those who dropped out to travel or go straight into the work force. The manic study mode that came with VCE started to wear away, class attendance started to slip and my enthusiasm dropped, which of course got reflected in my results.

Despite treating University as a chore up to this point, I had made a few friends at the Host Scheme function in my area. Later in the year I ran into them again at my first ever Engineering barbeque, where I stood around a bit intimidated as people handed me meat and beer for no apparent reason; Having no idea what the occasion was, I mainly listened to other people’s stories about various aspects of their university lives, whilst eating said meat and drinking said beer. Since the year was winding down, the other half of the conversations were grievances about the lack of study done, but it was more than high school and it would be a waste to only be a student here.

At the start of 2006 I joined Host Scheme, and made friends with people across all the faculties, and even campuses, of Monash. The best of them, or course, are the Engineers, and all of a sudden lectures were not as big, the tutorials could be solved communally, and all rooms could be orienteered to from the MESS office. Though the academic transcript suffered from Clayton becoming more than a large classroom, I was suddenly enjoying university,a nd began to realise all the opportunities available.

Some of my friends joined societies to participate in the fine arts, others to share an interest in a language/culture. Personally, joining Monash Basketball’s squad has led to making great friends and event better memories, with the annual Australian University Games becoming the highlight of my year. As University was no longer a chore, I found a reason to stay around for that late lecture, I had exam study groups in which study was actually achieved and firend in higher year levels who knew which subjects to choose and those to avoid.

I’m currently doing my Masters right now, under the pretext of more job opportunities at a higher wage when I finally start working. I know have a network of friends in the workforce letting me know what companies/industries are like, where jobs are available and even what to do at job interviews.

Robert Jensen