A week in the life of a Software Engineering student

Meet Lavanya Sood, a second-year Software Engineering student here at UNSW! Fun fact about Lavanya: she has a junior diploma in Indian classical music, which she studied for six years. Read on to see what Lavanya gets up to in a week at uni!

MONDAY

9-11am: Finite Mathematics Lecture
My week at university start early at 9am with a mathematics lecture. Even though I have to wake up at 6am to travel to university for a 9am lecture, I still find studying math (after having a good cup of coffee in the morning!) is one of the best ways to prepare for studying the rest of the week. 

11-12pm: Finite Mathematics Tutorial
I have a tutorial right after the lecture for the same topic. This helps me gain a better understanding of the concepts which were recently taught in the class.

12-4pm: Study Sesh
Every Monday after my lecture I meet up with one of my friends to work on our weekly Software Design exercises, as well as study for the upcoming exams. I also work on my Software construction assignment which involves designing my own Reddit website. I have to code how the user interface of the website should work and look like using the programming language JavaScript.

4-5pm: Catchup with my Mentor
I’m part of an Industry Mentoring Program at UNSW, so I had a meeting with my mentor this evening. We went for a coffee and discussed her work as a Frontend Developer. I was able to talk to her about how I should develop my soft skills and prepare myself to become a good engineer. 

TUESDAY

2-4pm: Software System Design and Implementation lecture
This is the one day where I start university after lunch, so I can get up late and relax before my classes start! I start my day at university in the afternoon with a software design lecture.

6-8pm: Software Construction lecture
My day on Tuesdays starts late with software and ends late with a software construction lecture. 

WEDNESDAY

9-11am: Software System Design and Implementation lecture
Wednesdays are the longest day at uni for me. To prepare for the long day ahead of me I sleep plenty the night before and rise early (a cup of hot chocolate helps!) This starts with a lecture to learn about software design.

11-1pm: Probability, Statistics and Information lecture
Being a software engineering student, I have a lot of math and computer subjects (as expected!) throughout my degree but I love gaining a better understanding of different concepts related to these subjects

2-4pm: Software Construction Tutorial 
My software construction tutorial is one of my classes which I enjoy the most mainly because I get to apply all the stuff I learned in lectures practically. 

4-5pm: Finite Mathematics Lecture
Yep, my long day at university ends with a math lecture – but it’s actually pretty interesting!

9-10pm: Club Meeting
I am a part of the Public Relations subcommittee of UNSW’s Women In Engineering Society, and every week we have online meetings where we discuss what programs and events we are working on and what is coming up for the society.

THURSDAY

11-12pm: Probability, Statistics and Information Tutorial
My last day of the week at uni starts with a maths tutorial. This helps me understand all the concepts as well as clarify all the problems that I was having with the topics in the lectures this week. 

12-4pm: Thursday Study Sesh
My time in-between my two classes is spent having a study session with my friends. I recommend taking breaks in the middle of your study session as well as it allows you to relax your brain!

4-6pm: Software Construction Lecture
I end my last lecture of the week by learning more about different programming languages!

5pm onwards: the weekend is in sight!
The rest of the day was spent with me trying to finish working on my software construction assignment. Working on computer assignments sometimes feel like a lot of work but the end result is always super satisfying. I make time for some much-needed Netflix breaks in between, to unwind from the uni week! 

Tip from L: Having an open mind and being passionate about learning new concepts can help you in the computer science field and the different programming languages you will learn throughout the degree. If you want to start learning about programming early, looking through online resources for different programming languages such as Python, JavaScript, C etc. can help as they give you a head start on the concepts you will learn at university!