‘Hands-on learning’ helps engineering student Chi Ki thrive

Engineering student Flinders


For Mechanical Engineering student Chi Ki Siu, a hands-on learning experience was vital. “Flinders University was the right choice for me firstly because it has a practical study base,” he says. “I love this type of learning.”

The Hong Kongese student laughingly acknowledges that constant academic learning is not his favourite style. “I can only learn from the ‘doing’, so this is a great way for me to get a better grade in my course.”

Career-ready graduates

Practical hands-on learning also allows Chi Ki to feel confident his Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering degree will prepare him for entering the workplace. “In the course, I had to learn how to do welding which was really fun. It was a great experience. I never thought a university could provide this kind of activity, I was really impressed by that.”

Chi Ki has been struck by the focus on future career pathways provided by the university and lecturers.

Discover the Flinders Career Hub – here.

“At Flinders University you can get so much support from the lecturer and also the facilities. They are also happy to help you figure out your future career pathways. The career hub in Flinders provides you with all the skills to update your resume and learn the interview process.”

Flinders Tonsley Lab
Flinders Tonsley Lab

Supportive staff and expert teaching

Having friendly and approachable lecturers is vital for Chi Ki, who has found his lecturers go beyond the ordinary to help their students.

“Every time I attend a lecture I usually have a question about the course or some aspect of study I don’t understand,” he says.

“The lecturers are always happy to answer all the questions I have. This is a great thing, I have to say. The lecturer is very nice to every student, even if they don’t have time after the lecture they still try hard to answer your questions. They are so kind and considerate – particularly with international students. It’s really helpful and I am personally grateful to that.”

Tonsley Lecture Theatre
Tonsley Lecture Theatre

Ultra-modern facilities

For the engineering student, Flinders offers the best balance of relaxed campus culture and hands-on study.

“The Flinders campuses really motivates my learning, it’s so beautiful here. There are a lot of cafes to work at and grab a coffee, you can go for nice walks to clear your head. I love the ducks at Bedford Park – they are really cool! The library there is open 24 hours, it provides so many spaces for studying and quiet times. It’s a great place to concentrate,” he says.

Discover more about online study during the COVID-19 crisis – here.

Chi Ki Siu also studies at the state-of-the-art Flinders Tonsley campus, a $120 million hub of innovation. Centrally locating the university’s teaching and research in engineering, mathematic, computer science, artificial intelligence, defence, national securities, and autonomous vehicles.

Along with some of Adelaide’s biggest businesses and globally-recognised organisations such as SAGE, Siemens, ZEISS, SIMEC ZEN Energy, Tesla, Micro-X, Rockwell Automation, as well as TAFE SA and Autism SA, Tonsley is also home to the Flinders Medical Device Research Institute (MDRI) and The Institute for Nanoscale Science & Technology.

A $141 million extension of the Tonsley rail line, completed in 2020, links Flinders’ Bedford Park and Tonsley campuses by rail, and allow Flinders’ students to access the CBD by train in less than 20 minutes.

Check out the new Flinders Railway Line – here.

“The facilities at Tonsley are quite brilliant and modern,” Chi Ki says. “My favourite space is the 3D printing laboratory. I love it because I can design something on my computer, put it on a USB and then just print it out. It’s a very great thing that I can design it and the uni can provide the equipment for me!”

3D printers at Tonsley
3D printers at Tonsley

Friendly people and beachside lifestyle

Chi Ki has made the most of the fun and relaxed Adelaide lifestyle (even with COVID-19), which is a big change from the busyness of Hong Kong.

“The environment in Adelaide and Australia is very good. The style of living here is very different than Hong Kong. It’s totally the opposite! Back home it’s very busy and crowded but here you can be very relaxed about your life. The beaches are very nice for me, I always go to the beach with my friends. I sometimes like to hang around the city with friends, it feels really safe here,” he says.

Adelaide is one of the most affordable state capital cities in Australia for students (QS Best Student Cities 2018) and is rated in the Top 10 World’s healthiest cities (Spotahome 2018).

Additionally, South Australia maintained an enviably strong record during the COVID-19 crisis, thanks to restrictions being put into place quickly – and taken seriously by the wider community. It is now one of the safest places in Australia, with more testing per capita, very few COVID-19 related deaths, and, to date, few active cases – click here for up-to-date COVID-19 information.

Adelaide student lifestyle
Students relaxing on the Torrens River, Adelaide city

Advice for prospective international students

“At Flinders University, you can get so much support from the lecturers and staff,” advises Chi Ki. “The facilities are brilliant and the lecturers are happy to help you figure out your future career pathways. I’m really impressed, and happy with my choice.”

Curious how you can start your degree without any more delay? Contact our friendly Flinders International team to learn more about enrolling. Read more about studying in the time of COVID from current student Ruixin Yang, and Civil Engineering student Olayinka Abioye, or hear about getting career-ready with Engineering student Henry Zhang.
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