I'm a third year Mechanical Engineering student at BCU, currently on my Placement Year at an Aerospace company in Shrewsbury, will proceed onto my final year in 2013. I used to live at Jennens court in my first year and have heard quite a lot about Curzon Gateway, sounds like a great accommodation to stay at!
Automotive Engineering is perhaps the best course offered by BCU's Engineering faculty. At first it might look a bit intimidating and you'll go like: 'This is a crap University, I should have applied elsewhere'. That's normal though, don't worry, everyone's been through that phase.
Trust me when I say this... over the last three years I have realized that the Engineering courses offered at BCU (apart from Software Engineering ) are some of the best industry focused courses. You will be taught powerful software packages such as CATIA, PowerMill, MATHCAD, MATLAB, Ansys and such which aren't taught elsewhere. These are widely used in industry, you'll also get a chance to do hands-on stuff in the workshops like work on CNC Mills and Lathes. Almost 60% of the modules are the same for Automotive and Mechanical Engineering and so you'll be around a lot of different people. Five things of advice though:
1. Don't party so hard that you can't get up in the morning. Weekends are fine but if you have a lecture in the morning next day don't be running up Broad Street until 4AM.
You could do that sometimes though and sleep like a baby the rest of the day, it's a part of University life. But don't go around doing that every other day.
2. 2ND YEAR >>> 1ST YEAR
Your first year will be REALLY easy to get through but when you go into your second year, there will be a HUGE difference, you'll notice it straight away with the extra-workload. If you can't perform well in your first year then God help you in your second year. :P
Don't miss the 9AM lectures. I know it's a pain in the ass and they might not look important but they are actually quite useful. I myself attended like 20% of the 9AM lectures but when exams hit, I was knackered and had a difficult time understanding everything.
3. 1st year does 'count'. If you want a placement/ job then you really need to score well in the first year. If someone tells you that it doesn't count towards your 'overall degree', tell them you don't just want a degree, you want work experience. Without placements/ internships, your degree is useless.
4. Communicate, interact and engage with ALL other students of your batch. Notice how 'ALL' is bold? That's because even the dumbest students sitting in the back row and the brightest kids in the front row will be really useful later on when you're struggling with your coursework. Life in your second year would be a hell lot easier as well. Haha.
If you want any other advice, feel free to contact me at: facebook.com/C4Cyanide. Cheeers and have a great time at University.