ENSTA Bretagne : Systèmes Numériques et Sécurité

Etienne, future engineer in Security and Digital Systems

30 September 2020
After 3 years packed with enriching experiences – including 6 months spent in China – Etienne is preparing to start his career as an engineer in the field of Big Data. Here is a review of his years spent at ENSTA Bretagne.
Etienne
2020
Engineer in Security and Digital Systems

Why did you choose ENSTA Bretagne ?

Originally, my project was to become a fighter pilot but in my second year of preparatory classes, I didn’t pass the medical. I discovered ENSTA Bretagne and especially the training in Pyrotechnics which made me want to join the school. Nevertheless, at the end of the first year in general studies, I found I was interested in Informatics. This subject is extremely diverse in terms of applications and developments. I was curious to find out more about this vast, ever evolving field.

What were the strong points of your specialization in Security and Digital Systems?

One of the strong points of Security and Digital Systems major is the variety of programming languages that you discover, especially during practical projects.

The lessons are more of a support and you shouldn’t think twice about developing the skills you find interesting off your own bat.

Where did you do your international mobility period ?

I had the opportunity to spend six months in China, at Tongi University (同济大学) in Shanghai during my second year of studies, to complete a course on artificial intelligence and image processing.
This substitution was a chance to discover Asian culture which is very different from western culture on a number of points. In particular, I learned Chinese as very few people speak English.
I also made the most of my opportunity to travel. China is a beautiful country, with magnificent landscapes, paddy fields, mountains, the Great Wall etc. I was sometimes surprised by the generosity of some of the Chinese living in isolated areas where clean, running water is a luxury.

What will you remember most about your years studying at ENSTA Bretagne ?

  • As far as clubs are concerned, I put a lot of energy into the BDG (Ride ‘n’ Slide club), together with a friend, we sold ride ‘n’ slide equipment in partnership with a specialized shop in Brest. I also maintained the water sports equipment. This association enabled me to represent the sports that I like, whilst enabling me to create a good group of friends.
  • For the training, my trip to China was a memorable experience, and when I came back, I realized just how far I had been. When you can adapt to such a change, you can adapt to other contexts. The third year was also memorable: you become more of a specialist, you become more autonomous.

Where did you do your final year internship and what was the subject ?

I did my internship in the Alten company, at Sophia Antipolis, near Nice. My research subject was to do with Big Data. Companies today are increasingly on the hunt to extract maximum value from large volumes of data. These volumes can be of different types, structured (databases), semi-structured (for example, representing documents by keywords) or unstructured (raw data on social networks). We call all of this information a Datalake. My research subject was downstream of the Datalake, where the information had to be organized, analyzed and exploited using algorithms that could process large blocks of data.

What did you like about your student life in Brest ?

I loved my time in Brest. I don’t really care about the weather and I could do fantastic sports in idyllic surroundings. Brittany is a very beautiful region. It has magnificent sports spots.

The school’s surroundings, the nightlife, the associations enabled meet to meet exceptional people.

What are your plans for the future ?

I’m interested in entrepreneurship. I would like to create my own company. But I am also looking for my first job.

Do you have any advice for students in preparatory classes ?

Try to realize the projects that you love as much as possible, making a mistake is part of your path. You need to listen to your heart.