Interview by James Smith | 26 June 2020
Meet Trushit Shah who undertook his studies through ATMC and recently graduated as FedUni's top student in the Masters of Information Technology Program. Trushit also received a "Dean's List" award for outstanding academic performance.
I grew up in Ahmedabad, one of the biggest cities in Gujarat in India. We had a big household. There were my parents, my two brothers, cousins and an uncle and aunt. I have great memories of hanging out all night with my friends and family. We would also have fun family trips away on weekends.
At school, I was good at mathematics, science and technology; I was really interested in learning new concepts. Even at a young age, the power of the mind - how the brain calculates things - truly amazed me.
Once I moved past being obsessed with the gaming side of computers, I became interested in programming. I learnt the C programming language, before moving onto Java, Python and C++.
My university studies and interests always centred around the concept of big data - what we all live with in the digital world ... the sharing, saving, storing, processing and transmitting of data. All of this comes under the umbrella of Information Technology, which I believe ultimately exists for the betterment of society.
Information Technology affects everybody and everything. For example, so many people communicate via social media. Here, all kinds of data is gathered and then transmitted all over the world if needed. This is what my Major focussed on - retrieving statistics out of the data to give it meaning.
If you made a record of the groceries which one shopper bought, there isn’t likely to be anything practical you could find out with that data. However, if you looked at the grocery purchases of many customers, certain patterns may begin to emerge. Supermarkets might then be able to use this bigger set of information to offer their customers things like promotional deals. Now the data has real meaning ...
Before travelling to Australia to study for my Masters degree with FedUni, I had worked as an Android and mobile application developer. Over time it became increasingly apparent to me that I would need a Masters to further my IT career.
I had never considered Australia as a higher education option until it was suggested to me by a family member. It all happened at lightning speed at the time. I completed a medical check-up and my visa was approved a week later. This left me with three days to arrive in Australia. To cut it even finer, I only had one day to pack for my flight.
My decision to travel to Australia to study paid off for me in the end. I enrolled in a Masters degree with Federation University’s School of Science, Engineering and Information Technology in Melbourne, Victoria. At my graduation ceremony, I received an award for academic excellence as the top graduating student in a Masters of Information Technology Program. I also received a Dean's List award for outstanding academic performance. I finished with a Grade Point Average of 6.94.
I never thought I’d win awards as prestigious as these. I studied hard during my Bachelor’s degree and thought maybe I’d achieve good results in my Masters as well ... but I never thought I’d be the top graduating student at a university like FedUni. It was a really proud moment for me which I’ll cherish for a long time.
I am 28 years old now and was recently married. My wife is still back home in India and will relocate here once the pandemic is over. Fortunately, my brother Aadit is living in Melbourne with me, so at least I have that family connection during these difficult times.
I received my Masters in a way that is very symbolic of my journey so far. I had a virtual graduation ceremony, another example of the practical use of information technology ... and big data.
Applications for the FedUni Masters of Information Technology program are now open. Scholarships are available. Register your interest or apply today.