Driven to success - UWS graduate heads to Silicon Valley

Jay Manley 

The University of Western Sydney Solar Car has taken a graduate from Western Sydney to Silicon Valley, for a dream job working at Tesla Motors - an innovative electric car manufacturer named after electrical engineer and physicist Nikola Tesla. In disruptive technologies in the renewable energy area, the impact of its CEO, Elon Musk, is similar to the impact of the late Steve Jobs in the computing industry.

Bachelor of Engineering graduate, Jay Manley, is now an Engineering Project Manager with Tesla Motors, near San Francisco.  In 2013 Jay lead the inaugural UWS Solar Car team in the prestigious World Solar Car Challenge.

Jay, and two other students studying Bachelor of Engineering (Robotics and Mechatronics), started the project with just $500 in 2012.  By race day the project had grown to a team of over 20 students and a budget of $300,000.

Most recently a Project Support Officer in the School of Computing Engineering and Mathematics (SCEM), Jay says leading the UWS Solar Car team provided him with an international network of contacts.

"Working on the solar car team gave me the skills and confidence to chase a career in the world's most competitive market for engineers – Silicon Valley," says Jay.

"I'm grateful for the support and encouragement that UWS provided.  They put their faith in me, a student, to initiate a challenging project, which had enormous risk but also the potential to be a great learning opportunity.

"Building a solar electric vehicle at UWS definitely made my resume more attractive for the role at Tesla Motors."

The Dean of SCEM, Professor Simeon Simoff, congratulates Jay on his new role.

"UWS prides itself on providing the ideal environment for students not only to learn and apply their new knowledge, but to develop their creativity, innovative thinking, entrepreneurial skills, high ethical standards, integrity and leadership. These are essential for success in contemporary society," says Professor Simoff.

"Jay's success is a fine example of the power of contemporary higher education to bring life changing opportunities."

"Through the achievements of our graduates, such as Jay, and our ongoing research, UWS has become a driving force for innovation within Greater Western Sydney and beyond."

20 May 2015
Media Contact: Tanya Patterson
Photo By: Ann Xiao

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