Roberto Narine is from Guyana, South-America and he is studying Water Science & Engineering at IHE Delft. He has worked at the Ministry of Public Infrastructure in Guyana since 2009 and that is also where he first heard about IHE Delft: "My supervisor, who followed a short course at IHE Delft, forwarded me an email about the SIDS scholarship, as he knew I was interested in opportunities to broaden my knowledge. I researched the Institute and I was very impressed with the information I found, therefore I decided to study at IHE Delft. Studying Coastal Engineering in Delft is logical, as there is so much expertise here.''
"I actually started my career as a Civil Engineer, I chose engineering because I have a passion for science and mathematics. Through my work I was introduced to the coastal sector, which I find to be the most interesting and dynamic branch of civil engineering. Seeing the importance of coastal defence in Guyana, as the country lies below sea-level, coastal engineering is important for the country, as 95% of the population lives on the coast and it plays a big part in the country’s economy."
"Upon completion of my BSc in Cuba, I started working in the Sea Defence Department at the Ministry of Public Infrastructure in Guyana. There we supervised capital and maintenance works along the coastline, which can be very challenging at times. For example, when there are breeches in the sea defence. My day-to-day work was to supervise a team responsible for the maintenance and rehabilitation of the sea defence."
''I have gained a tremendous amount of knowledge within just five months of studying at IHE Delft. The teaching-style at IHE Delft is different from Guyana. At IHE Delft the programmes are very structured and the lectures are approachable. We just have a few weeks to prepare for exams. However, the methods used are excellent, for example we listen to presentations held by Professors, receive all the necessary materials beforehand.''
Roberto on his goals when he graduates from IHE Delft: "I plan to return to Guyana and implement a long term Coastal Adaptation Strategic Programme where we can develop, protect and nourish our coastal line, taking into account the effects of climate change.
Ultimately, I would like to utilise the skills and knowledge I have gained at IHE Delft to work on other types of coast. I am also very inspired by the professors at IHE Delft and I am thinking about making a contribution to the Coastal Engineering field by doing a PhD in the future. I will take it one step at a time.''
"I have made friends with people from all over the world at IHE Delft. The multicultural environment is quite unique. That helped to make me more aware of the various water issues globally: I was overwhelmed to realize that some countries do not even have adequate drinking water."
Roberto on Delft: ''This is my first time in The Netherlands and I am enjoying my time. I think that Delft has a very unique architectural design and I like the clay bricks used to build houses in the old centre of the town. Coming from a tropical country it might be strange, but I feel at home in Delft as I like the cold for a change compared to the heat I am used to in Guyana.''
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