Provide support to the production line as well as be involved in improvement projects.
I thoroughly enjoyed my placement. It provided lots of opportunities for growth as an Engineer. It helped me to understand what an engineer does in the real world, and what areas I need to improve upon. While still being a supportive environment. I was also allowed to function independently and allowed real responsibility.
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I felt a very valued and appreciated member of the team. I eventually reached a level of knowledge where they would come to me for help on matters and ask for my opinion on things, both work and home related. Additionally I was part of the office relationships and was included in conversations and fully included in a variety of social engagements.
I received exceptional feedback on how to develop as an engineer as well as what was expected of me. He also offered projects and asked me to be involved in some of his long term projects. He was also very supportive in a few moments of family related issues and was fully understanding and supportive.
My role was a very reactive one. So I was always busy with either an issue I’d been informed of or working on long term improvement projects. Either way, each day would bring something new and exciting to fill the day up with new possibilities. This made sure I was busy and making the most of my placement.
I was given lots of responsibility on my placement, from managing my own projects to attending meetings with high ranking employees and providing feedback on their ideas. As well as being responsible for my own projects and ensuring that they met deadlines. I did, of course, interact with my manager and ensure that I was coping. But had a large amount of responsibility.
The skills I have attained have helped me an immeasurable amount. From teaching me the best way to interact with senior and junior colleagues as well as with contractors. As well as better time management and how to work to deadlines through the use of gaant charts and other tools.
The atmosphere in the office was exceptional. A perfect balance of work and play. My colleagues were kind and welcoming me into the group. Everyone in the office was on excellent terms with each other as well as with managers and executives. Happy to help and able to offer advice on all areas. Also invited on social outings with my colleagues.
I was the most recent in a long line of placement students so the company was well set up to deal with students. Additionally staff were familiar with students not knowing everything and were more than happy to go through things more than once which was really helpful, especially when you aren’t quite settled in and don’t feel completely at home to begin with.
The company invested lots of time in us, the students. From formal training to employee time spent teaching the software and processes necessary. In addition to providing a chartered Engineer as a mentor to help in registering as an EngTech. Which is a useful stepping stone to being a chartered engineer.
Future employment prospects are good, as I feel I made a good impression on both colleagues as well as staff across the company. Colleagues have said that they would like to have me back. A job is by no means guaranteed as you have to prove your worth. It is also affected by the company’s financial situation.
There was a great social life between the students. Having nearly 50 of us augments it further. From nights out to weekends either at someone’s house watching a football/rugby game or going to Alton towers. Also at work you could easily hold a conversation with most students and would often go for lunch at the same time, rather than with your office.
The cost of living was relatively low. I had a car for my placement to commute to and from work, which incurred extra expense, but in terms of food and living it’s no more than a normal student, if a little cheaper as you can’t go out on weeknights! The subsidised canteen was also a relatively cheap alternative to bringing your own lunch. The placement is as expensive as you make it, as with most things in life.
Nightlife in and around work was poor, as it is a small industrial town. Most students lived further out in the surrounding towns where there was a stronger student presence from universities etc. The students would often go out often and arrange parties for birthdays etc. The only issue was if you didn’t live in the same town as the party was in, but this was usually solved by crashing on someone’s sofa.
There were plenty of opportunities out of work, as many staff members had bikes we would often go cycling in the surrounding countryside. In addition to swimming in the morning before work with another student. As well as the student led nights out and alton towers trips this led to a hive of activity at the weekends.