Faculty of
Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology

Amorita Combis
Amorita Combis

Meet Amorita

Fourth Year Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) Chemical and Biological *

* Please note the Biological major has since been replaced by Bioprocess major for students commencing 2021 and onwards

What/who inspired you to choose engineering?

I remember being so lost in high school about what I wanted to study in university because I was interested in too many things. I really loved maths and science, but I had creative interests as well. I also knew that I wanted a job where I could work with people and do something that would have a meaningful impact. It was then through friends and family that engineering was recommend to me. I soon realised that it was the perfect combination of all my passions and interests and also gave me so much diversity. It’s rare to find a degree that encompasses so many different skills and ways of thinking which makes each day different and exciting!

Why did you choose the specialisation you are studying?

I love that with Chemical engineering the roles and industries you can work in are endless! There are so many opportunities for career change and development which is really appealing to me. I chose Chemical and Biological specifically because I’ve always had a really strong interest in the health industry and the medical applications of science. This specialisation and major was the obvious choice for me as it uses engineering principles to tackle biological and medical issues, however, at the same time I also have the flexibility of a chemical engineering degree to pursue other industries.

What is one thing about university or engineering that you wished you knew earlier?

Your university experience is what you make it! UQ has so many opportunities and ways to get involved both in engineering and in university life in general; but, it’s important to be proactive so you can seize all the opportunities available. The more you can participate in what is on offer the more rewarding your university journey will be both academically and socially. My advice is to put yourself out there early on – go to clubs and society events, network and get to know other students or even pick up a new hobby or activity!

What made you pick engineering at the University of Queensland over other universities?

Once I knew I definitely wanted to study engineering, living in Brisbane, I naturally attended many UQ future student engineering events and was really inspired by how passionate all the students were about engineering. In particular, I actually had the chance to speak to the leaders in the Women in Engineering program and they really highlighted to me how diverse and inclusive the UQ engineering environment is which was really appealing to me. UQ Chemical engineering also has so many strong industry connections and links that span globally so I knew it was going to provide me with the best opportunities to progress my career beyond university.

Your best tip for first-year engineering students?

Use the first year of your degree to work out what interests you. There are so many different disciplines and pathways on offer for engineering at UQ which can be overwhelming in the beginning, however, you don’t need to decide anything right away. In first year, try anything that sparks your interest so you can work out what you like and even what you don’t like because that will help you find what you’re passionate about so you can pick your discipline.

Your favourite example of amazing engineering?

The da Vinci robotic surgical system! Using this system vital surgeries can be performed less invasively and with significantly more precision than a surgeon’s hand offers. The da Vinci system has 4 arms which the surgeon can control all at the same time using a control centre. The control centre has handles sort of like a video game that the surgeon can handle to make the robot move.

Dream engineering job when you graduate?

Long-term I’d love to be involved in developing artificial organs and tissues in the biomedical industry. However, after completing my vacation work over the summer, I’ve also become interested in cleaner energy solutions. While these jobs are extremely different, they both can have a meaningful impact on the world. I think it’s so incredibly rewarding that engineers have the ability to positively influence people’s lives in so many different ways which is what I’d love to use my degree for.

What do you hope to achieve as a WE student leader?

I hope to give other young girls the confidence to study engineering. When I think back to myself as a high school student, engineering seemed like a daunting and unknown career, but it was after talking to WE student leaders that I was exposed to all the cool pathways engineering can take you on. I want to showcase the diverse opportunities that exist within engineering and encourage more students to take the leap into this exciting field.