Anik Mitra

During the first lockdown due to Covid 19; I had extra time to consider which direction I would like to move in after school. Equipped with a strong interest in maths and physics, I found engineering to be a particularly dynamic and purposeful career. As we look to expand our horizons in space and seek to solve our problems at home, such as climate change, engineering will play an ever-important role and whichever field you specialise in, there will always be potentially ground breaking innovations to discover.

How did you use your Scholarship funding?

I used my funding for some at-home electronic hobby projects. I purchased an Arduino Uno Mega and a Nano BLE. Using these I made some small Internet of Things projects. I also had interests in Artificial Intelligence, hence why I bought an OpenMV camera, which was a camera with onboard image classification capabilities. With this I made a mask recognition program, where I used various online datasets and homemade ones, of people with masks on and off. This was particularly exciting for me to see AI in action in a useful setting. In addition to these projects I purchased various books related to specific areas I am interested in, such as the aerospace sector. Arkwright allowed me to buy some very technical subject specific books and delve deeper into the niche of astrodynamics.

What did you gain from your Arkwright Scholarship? Any stand-out experiences? Did it open any doors for you?

With no direct experience in engineering, I decided to apply for the Arkwright Scholarship thinking that the application process in itself would be invaluable experience into how to think like an engineer. This was especially apparent in the project section of the application form, where I gained hands on experience with electronics and design. The aptitude test, despite being fiendishly difficult, was a liberating experience of combining my creative abilities with technical knowledge about mechanisms, materials and manufacture methods. The Scholarship also provided me with a mentor, who was an expert in the field of electrical engineering. Together we built some Internet of Things projects, and I learned how to use different languages such as Micropython and learnt how to use Thingspeak, which is a cloud for small scale sensors to relay live data. Furthermore, with the confidence I got from earning the scholarship, I decided to become manager of a school engineering project partnered with Nissan. We designed and manufactured a prototype to solve a problem Nissan were facing in their Sunderland factory, which we visited. I also got the opportunity to be part of a mechatronics sub team in building a wind tunnel with students from Imperial College. The application process, as well as achieving the Scholarship, enabled me to play prominent roles in these ambitious projects that previously I would not have the confidence to get involved in.

Where are you studying now, what subject, and how you are finding it so far?

I am currently studying Maths, Further Maths , Physics and Economics at A-level. So far, I am enjoying the breadth of topics covered in Physics. However, I am most enjoying learning more advanced techniques in further mathematics such as solving differential equations and complex numbers, which are used in modelling phenomena in fluid dynamics and electrical engineering.

What are your plans for the future?

I am hoping to study Aeronautical Engineering at Imperial College London. I hope to do a year abroad in the US, with a partner university such as MIT or Stanford. This will be an amazing opportunity to gain experience of engineering in environments where much of the pioneering research is being done. As for careers, I would like to get involved in the aerospace sector, specifically interplanetary space flight. I am also interested in the aviation sector, as it faces some serious challenges in the future that I would like to be a part of tackling.


Arkwright Scholar 2020 - 2022

Reece Foundation

Maths, Further Maths, Physics and Economics

Current Arkwright Engineering Scholar