by ECE 2014/15 alumnus Julfikhsan Amhad Mukhti
Coming from one of the largest archipelagos in the world, I am aware that there are huge potentials, but at the same time also challenges, in managing coastal areas in Indonesia. In 2014, I took the MSc Engineering in the Coastal Environment (ECE) programme at the University of Southampton, which is among the best for ocean-related studies in the UK, to learn about how those potentials can be optimised and the challenges, such as flooding, erosion, and sea level rise, can be overcome effectively.
During my study, I learnt about the coastal environment from its smallest scale as individual grains to nation-wide coastal management. I am most interested in the modelling side and learning how to do surveying to acquire validation data, including the operation of the equipment, scheduling, and where to acquire the data before finally using the software was very exciting. Doing field trips in almost every module also helped me understand the engineering problems better in the physical context and I think this is the greatest strength of the ECE programme. More importantly, although it was quite hard work, it was all also really fun!
Right now I am working in a private engineering consultant company that is currently evaluating and redesigning existing rivers and drains in Jakarta so it will not overflow during heavy rainfalls. I used the HEC-RAS hydraulic modelling software quite heavily in this work, which was previously taught during the CENV6123 Coastal Flood Defence module in ECE (can never forget how interesting the lecture was!). The work is part of the National Capital Integrated Coastal Development (NCICD) in Indonesia and I am really excited to be involved in this.