ITACET Foundation scholarship student Mohamed Beghoul recounts the moment he decided to continue his tunnelling studies and his experience following the specialized Master's programme in Turin:
It all began when I attended the WTC 2019 in Naples in order to present my PhD research. During the training session, I realized how necessary it was to acquire a multidisciplinary knowledge, so that I can work in the tunnelling sector. For that reason, I decided to follow the post-graduate specialized Master’s programme in Tunnelling and Tunnel Boring Machines (T&TBMs) at Politecnico di Torino in Italy. In 2019, the ITACET Foundation granted me a scholarship in order to be able to take part in the course.
The course is a wide variety of profound theoretical skills and practical work. The first month was intended to homogenize the class, and to make sure that all students were up-to-date with the tunnelling must-have and skills. After that, advanced topics in tunnelling engineering were presented and discussed in detail. The course merges university lectures with expert lectures from construction companies, machine manufacturers, design firms and industry professionals to provide multidisciplinary knowledge. The programme will conclude with a thesis to be completed during our internship at a design or construction company.
One of the strong points of the course has been the multi-skilled, experienced and highly qualified lecturers who have a broad and extensive knowledge of tunnelling subjects, which they happily shared with us. The worldwide aspect of the class was also an advantage for the students to exchange their culture and tunnelling background.
At the end of June I successfully finished my first semester of the course, and I must say that the first month was the best. Back then, we were following the course in the classroom which helped us to get to know each other well. It allowed also an extensive interaction with all the experts and professionals. Unfortunately, shortly after that, the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the closing of Universities, and we shifted to remote learning, and yet this turned out to be very effective as well. In fact, our course coordinator made sure that we all got the recordings of all the virtual classes, which helped us to retain more materials because we were able to learn at our own pace, going back and re-reading, skipping, or accelerating through the concepts as we chose.
On the 6th of July I started my training at SWS Engineering, a major design company in Italy. The topic of my internship is “The importance of corrected work-flow of the big data related to a tunnel excavation project with big diameter TBM-EPB (Algiers Metro Extension)”. It consists of the importance of the analysis, management and processing of TBM raw-data and surface monitoring due to the relations between advancing parameters of the excavation and the induced subsidence effects on the surface.
My overall experience has been wonderful so far! It has been challenging but so fulfilling. Politecnico di Torino is a wonderful hub of activity. We have a fantastic team of tutors who without doubt go above and beyond for all the students. For anybody considering Politecnico di Torino to follow the Tunnelling course, then I would definitely recommend it.
Finally, I would like to express my sincere thanks to ITACET Foundation for giving me this chance which has opened up new opportunities for my tunnelling career. Without its support, none of this would have been possible.
The Foundation is very happy to have helped a young tunneller on their journey to success and wishes Mohamed all the best for the end of his studies and for his bright future to come!