Produced by Guest blogger
In his guest blog, Stephen Sulpy, a BSc (Hons) Forensic Investigation student talks about what it’s like to study as a mature student.
Tell us a bit about yourself and the course you study
I’m a 30 year old mature student with three children. I’m studying Forensic Investigation at BU. Prior to coming onto the course I served for ten years in the US military. I spent the last four years of my military career as a criminal investigator.
What lead you to choosing to study at BU?
As I came close to the end of my military career in 2019, I knew I wanted to take on higher education. I wanted the real experience, to commit myself to being a full-time student and really immerse myself in the subject. My wife is English and has family in Poole, so it was appealing to come here and study while getting to spend more time with my children and allowing my wife to be close to home.
Is there anything in particular that you’ve enjoyed most about studying Forensic Investigation?
I’ve enjoyed the range of experience that the academics on this course have had. I have also really enjoyed the many guest lectures that I’ve had the privilege of attending through this course. The course is very well designed, and every single unit I have undertaken was very relevant to the degree title.
What about any challenges that you’ve come across?
Time management has been difficult with three children; but I’ve had support from my wife and extended family which allowed me to spend a good deal of time on my studies.
How have you found student life in Bournemouth?
I suppose my experience as a student in Bournemouth is probably quite different considering my age and family situation; however, Bournemouth is a beautiful place to live and study, and I couldn’t recommend it more.
Have you had any thoughts about future careers or what you’d like to do after graduation?
I have been actively seeking employment as a federal criminal investigator in the United States. I am very eager to put the skills that I have gained on this course to use to make an impact in real investigations.
Have you got any advice for anyone thinking of studying Forensic Investigation or thinking about coming to study at BU?
Forensics is a niche discipline; but it draws upon a lot of different subjects-so you will get a lot of variety in this course. Regardless, think about what you want out of your degree and your professional life. If you want to become a criminal investigator then in my opinion this course is perfect for you.
Taking notes throughout the unit are important but come exam revision time it is your ability to write a great deal about a subject in a very short time that will land you higher marks.
You may hear the phrase ‘reading for a degree’ from some of your academics. Do not underestimate this: How well read you are on a subject will absolutely be reflected when you’re writing assignments.
If you plan to get into a profession in forensic science or criminal investigations, start making your career moves immediately-even in your first year. This will give you a goal and attach a purpose to your work as you progress.