RUB Bauwesen CompEng


As a coordinator in an international Master's program like CompEng there is one thing for sure: You're gonna meet a lot of students, who are coming from all over the world. Some of them you'll keep in mind as especially friendly, some of them you'll remember because they are extraordinarily good students. And to some of them you just like to think back because they are both - highly congenial in their personal manners and outstanding in terms of their subject-specific achievements.

Albanian graduate Nikolin Kuteli was one of them - an extremely sympathetic down-to earth guy who performed unbelievably well in the program. Read on to learn about his experiences in Germany and specifically at RUB, his personal background and his objectives for the future.


1. Please introduce yourself briefly. Where do you come from, what is your cultural and educational background?

I was born in Pogradec, a lovely city in south-east of Albania located on the shores of Ohrid lake. It is here where I completed my general education up to high-school. I consider myself being a little lucky in always knowing what I liked, as in high school, math and physics were the two subjects that I enjoyed the most. As an undergraduate, I decided to pursue a degree in Civil Engineering at Polytechnic University of Tirana because I believed that it would give me incredible satisfaction to further develop my favourite subjects in real life applications. Subsequently, I completed my master's degree in Structural Engineering at the same university.

In order to prove my understanding of key concepts, I tested myself by teaching it to others. After my graduation, I was engaged as a teaching assistant in the Department of Structural Mechanics for the subject  Theory of Structures. What I realized from this experience is that only when one is successful in making others understand a key concept can feel satisfied with his own understanding.


2. What were your reasons to come to Germany? Why did you choose Germany as a destination for studying?

By the time I received my degree I realized that something was missing in my education. Over the last decade the design process has changed in response to trends in computing and numerical methods. Computers are giving engineers the ability to visualize the results of their decisions in real-time. It became clear to me that these fascinating tools must become part of every engineer’s repertoire, including mine. Unfortunately, these tools were theoretically not widely accessible in Albania and I knew that my academic future had to take place elsewhere.

I was elated to hear that I had been accepted to the Computational Engineering programme at Ruhr-Universität in Bochum. This program was not only in one of the leading institutions in Germany, but also a perfect academic fit for me. I was sure that this synergy would lead to great performance results and today, after my graduation, I can proudly say that my predictions came true.


3. What makes engineering sciences, especially CompEng so fascinating to you?

For me, pursuing a degree in engineering has not been just about the end product, but also about the process and understanding the relevant concepts. I enjoy understanding the theoretical foundation as well as the practical side of the engineering applications.

My favourite part of resolving an engineering problem has always been the design stage. It is that difficult part of the problem-solving process when you are not committed to any one idea, but are willing to take into consideration even the most adventurous alternatives (that also satisfy the constraints of course). This is what I have learned most from my education and especially during the challenging courses of CompEng. In this statement, I would like to highlight the academic maturity that I have reached and the intellectual freedom that has allowed it to happen. All these thanks to the three main pillars that constitute this master programme, the dedicated professors, the friendly fellow students and the CompEng support team.


4. What are your plans for your future career? Will you stay in Germany to go on with a PhD?

Being curious about German working culture, I decided to gain some experience in the industrial field. Starting from February 2015, I have been engaged as a Static Calculations/Simulation Engineer at MHWirth GmbH in Erkelenz. I am very excited about this new experience and step by step I am getting used of the German working environment such as the mysterious lunchtime greeting 'Mahlzeit' or the untranslatable term 'Feierabend', which at first can make foreigners a little bit confused.


5. Any last words?

A master programme like CompEng not only improves your skill set with the most recent advances in engineering sciences but also surrounds you with a friendly international atmosphere, which nowadays is considered a very valuable experience. Moreover, although a considerable time might be spent in the library, I can assure everyone that as student of CompEng and RUB there will always be time for fun, entertainment and other free time activities. Having enjoyed my time in Bochum, I can fully recommend this master course as a big step toward a bright future and wish to every newcomer all the best in this new journey.