Valentin Salamakha is a third year student studying a dual degree in Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Mining) and Bachelor of Computer Science at UNSW. Valentin was awarded the Glencore Mining Engineering Scholarship which supports students undertaking a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Mining) in their second year of study. The scholarship may also offer paid industrial training during the summer vacations of each year prepping students for employment success.
We spoke to Valentin about why he chose to study mining engineering at UNSW and what his advice is for future mining students.
Which degree are you currently doing and why you chose it?
I am currently undertaking a Bachelor of Mining Engineering combined with a Bachelor of Computer Science in a dual degree program. I have chosen to pursue a career in this field because I have always had an inquisitive mind for engineering since a young age. When faced with the challenge of deciding which type of engineering to study, mining felt like an easy choice when considering the role, it plays in the global economy. With the industry moving further towards automation and computer applications, obtaining another qualification for an extra year felt like a no brainer.
Which scholarship do you hold and what has it meant for you to be awarded this Scholarship?
I was lucky enough to be awarded the prestigious Glencore Mining Engineering Scholarship. This opportunity has provided me with invaluable work experience, which I now consider to be an integral part of my learning here at UNSW. The generous financial aid has also given me the ability to reduce my part-time work, and tailor more time towards my studies and career development.
How do you think your studies at UNSW will help with your career aspirations?
UNSW is home to one of the largest and best engineering faculties in the world. More specifically, the School of Minerals and Energy Resources Engineering houses world class facilities and holds close industry relationships to maximise learning and employability for students. I have no doubt that my undergraduate study here at UNSW will equip me with the practical skills and knowledge required to excel in the workforce after I graduate.
Can you share something about the resources and energy industry that might interest someone considering studies and a career in this industry?
The resources and energy industry is comprised of hundreds of unique companies that all play a significant role in the Australian economy. Each year, industry leaders offer vacation programs that run over the summer break. Many of these programs occur on-site in rural locations and are a great opportunity to work with and meet new communities, while also developing your own professional skillset.
What advice would you give to new/future students to excel at your degree?
I would have to say the most important things by far are to manage your time effectively and plan ahead, while seeking help and clarification when you need it. At first, the transition from secondary education into a new learning environment can be stressful but if you approach it with a positive attitude, and take advantage of the services and resources around you, you will succeed.
What are your favourite things to do in or around UNSW and how can students make the most out of the UNSW Experience?
My favourite thing to do on campus is interact and partake in student and faculty led events. The School of Minerals and Energy Resources Engineering, and the AusIMM Sydney Student Chapter do an excellent job at providing direct industry and student interaction throughout the year. However, no matter your degree or interests, every faculty has its own unique society and there is also plenty on offer. So, get involved as much as possible because your time at university is short-lived when compared to your career.
“When faced with the challenge of deciding which type of engineering to study, mining felt like an easy choice when considering the role, it plays in the global economy”