EECS Students place first at the recent ITMB Autumn Challenge 2020 organized by Tech Partnership degrees and sponsored by TechUK.
A group of students from the School of Electronic Engineering and Computer science studying BSc Computer Science with Management (ITMB), have placed first at the recent ITMB Autumn Challenge 2020 organized by Tech Partnership degrees and sponsored by TechUK
The team competed against 10 other teams from 5 universities in the UK. Each Team was tasked to architech a solution to a problem experienced during covid times.
The team consisted of four students who are studying BSc Computer Science with Management (ITMB). All of the students were based in four separate countries throughout the competition. Nino - User Experience Lead was based in Croatia, Adya - Market Research Lead was based in India, Zeynap - Lean Lead based in Turkey and Jaycee - Tech Lead was based in London.
The judges were very impressed that the team used design thinking, lean canvas and other industry-based practices in developing the solution.
We were able to catch up with two members of the winning teach, Jaycee and Adya to find out more about the project and team.
Tell me a bit about yourselves?
Jaycee: Hi I’m Jaycee from London, UK. I am currently in Year 1 studying the ITMB course at QMUL. My hobbies are in music production (Lofi-Beats/Chill Beats) and table tennis. Next year I would like to play for the QMBL table tennis team
Adya: Hi, I’m Adya and I was born and brought up in India. After completing high school, I wanted to study in an international and diverse environment and London was a perfect choice.
I have always been keen about technology and enjoy art and music and always seek to expand my knowledge.
Congratulations on winning the ITMB Autumn Challenge, can you tell me a bit more about the competition and what it means to win?
Adya: The competition organised by Tech Partnership Degrees had 10 other teams from universities across the UK. The brief was to architect a solution for the problems people have faced or are facing during the ongoing COVID pandemic.
Winning the competition meant a lot due to several reasons. It was great exposure. For me, taking part in such competitions is always a win-win situation because even if you do not “win the prizes”, you always win the knowledge gained from others and the relationship with your team. Also, it is all about the effort one puts into the thing they want to achieve.
Jaycee: While competing with 9-10 different teams, we managed to stand out to the judges as they mentioned the presentation was one of the best they have ever seen! It felt amazing when we have been notified that we won!
Tell me about your winning project and how you came to choose this particular issue to solve?
We conducted a survey with 100 participates and found that many people felt lonely, anxious, even depressed because of not being able to interact with others and not having much to do on their own. They felt like they have lost their freedom, and that freedom is exactly what we want to return to them, although, in another form that we offer.
We came up with an innovative yet unique solution for the problems people were facing due to the recent Covid situations. We created a company called Traverse where we will offer people to travel virtually around the world using the most advanced VR headsets, software, 4D features and food.
This issue of loss of freedom to travel and not being able to be with friends and family is something everyone can relate to. In these difficult times when everyone is stuck at home with nothing to do and nowhere to go, we wanted to provide the people with a fun and immersive solution with our Virtual Reality (VR) travel service-traVeRse.
This would allow them to have a sense of freedom to go anywhere in the world they like with the ones they love. Our service is not just a visual experience, but is a full-fledged one, providing people with food, scents, sounds and much more.
How did you find working remotely - were there any particular challenges that you had to overcome?
Working remotely was surprisingly easy and saved me the time needed from commuting. Working online also allowed us to work on files together in real-time which I found very convenient. Although we can't meet up in person, we still got on well through online meetings which helped us accomplished what we have done.
For our winning video solution, we had to record ourselves in different parts of the world and combine our videos at the end. Although working together in real life would have been much easier, we took advantage of our situation by recording ourselves in various beautiful locations across the world and also using virtual backgrounds which added to the essence of our provided solution.
How have you found university life during the pandemic?
Jaycee: University life online can have benefits and drawbacks. I personally found that learning online was so much easier as I did not need to commute to get to my lectures and because of that, I have more time to spare. Talking about socialising though, it was very difficult. I currently speak to very few people taking computer science courses even though I attend mostly all the same lectures as they do. However, one way to try to meet more people is through societies. Although virtual societies don't have the same experience as in real life, I was able to talk to other people from different courses.
Adya: Transitioning from a high school in India to a university in London itself was a big change for me. I am grateful to be living with my family during these times.
And although we might be missing the experience of actually going to university, it hasn’t totally hindered our ability to learn, expand our knowledge and make friends.
Have you identified any other issues which you'd hope to solve using technology?
Adya: I believe that not being able to travel and the boredom during this pandemic was one of the major issues people were and currently are facing. One day, I would love to make traVeRse a real service when I have acquired the skills to do so. A service everyone can access and enjoy.
Why did you choose to study the EECS and what has your experience been?
Jaycee: EECS and SBM is great so far! I have learnt Java, computer architecture, professional practice and many more which will prepare me to be a computer scientist. In SBM I have learnt management so far which was interesting as I was able to see how businesses use a framework to analyse their environment that they are in.
Adya: Computer science has made a positive impact on our daily lives and has the potential to solve real-world problems. We see our daily life is impacted by technology and by choosing EECS, I would like to be a part of this ever-changing field and contribute to its development.
My experience learning about the world of computers so far has been exciting and I hope to expand my knowledge even further with this course.
Why did you choose to study a joint programme?
Jaycee: I chose the ITMB course because I wanted to study subjects that I find interesting i.e. Information Technology and Business.
Adya: I have always been interested in technology. I want to combine my passion for computer science with management studies as it forms the basis of every organisation. A degree in ITMB will provide me with the fundamentals to achieve that.
What do you hope to go onto do after graduation?
Jaycee: I would like to progress in a master's degree that focuses more on the business side.
Adya: After graduation, I want to use the knowledge and best practices learnt abroad to provide innovative tech-based solutions. I intend to be an entrepreneur developing original technologies rather than just be an adopter.