1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I really enjoyed the placement. The office as a whole had a really good work/life balance, and each week there were several activities to take part in that offered opportunities to meet/talk to people outside the team my placement was with. This meant I felt very integrated within the office despite only being placed there for 8 weeks.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I felt quite valued by my colleagues: being invited to a large variety of team/office activities made me feel very included and the work I was doing largely felt useful. This was particularly the case when people other than my line manager approached me and asked for my help to complete something with an approaching deadline. There were one or two points, however, when I had less work to complete and I felt like I wasn't contributing as much to the team
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
The support was very good, from the initial welcome to the office, including representatives from the Young Engineer's Forum taking us for lunch and telling us about the company and office, to when I was working on a project and people were happy to talk me through new software or specifications/concepts I hadn't come across before.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
It varied, most of the time I was sufficiently busy to fill my time, but at a few points felt like I didn't have enough work to do. I never felt too busy though, even when working to a deadline.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was often responsible for producing all or part of a document, and at times this involved liaising with other people both inside and outside of BuroHappold, however I never felt like I was completely in charge and there was normally the reassurance that someone else would check over my work.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
The main skills I developed were in software such as AutoCAD and Bluebeam, both of which will definitely significantly benefit me in my future career. I also had the chance to do some research into topics in the context of a project that I was working on that will be relevant for both my degree and beyond.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
It was a very friendly and welcoming atmosphere, and I was invited to join the team on trips at lunch/after work to meet people. There was also a nice atmosphere within the younger members of staff across the office due to the many events organised by the Young Engineer's Forum. In terms of working, there were times when I had a lot to do, but I never felt required to stay beyond 5:30 each afternoon, although there were people who would work through their lunch and stay well beyond 5:30 each evening (although there were also people who always left promptly and took a full lunch break)
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
It was very well organised, I felt that I had all the necessary information prior to starting my placement, and the first few days were very easy thanks to the welcome pack and information provided by various people in the company. I was introduced to the other interns and some introductory sessions were put on for us in the first few weeks.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
There were some training sessions in some software commonly used in the company put on for the interns, even if our specific team didn't frequently use that program, which was very interesting and potentially very useful. Various members of my team were also happy to sit with me and explain procedures and software I hadn't experienced before, being willing to fit that around their own work.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Sports and Social Club
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I have been asked if I am interested in returning to the company and been given the option to express an interest in specific teams and locations within the company. There appears to be a regular intake of graduate students within the company, and with the Young Engineers Forum putting on events to meet and get to know other people in similar positions to yourself and the variety of projects I had the opportunity to work on in a short space of time, the idea of future employment is very appealing.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
I started my placement at the same time as a number of other interns (all in different teams) and we all stayed in contact. We often met up at lunch time and after work/at weekends. There were also events organised by the Young Engineers Forum as well as social events within each team, so there were many opportunities to socialize.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Bath has a lot of tourists, and so is fairly expensive. I lived in Bristol and traveled in, but Bristol is also fairly expensive.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The nightlife in Bath is limited, but there is a large selection of pubs, including one that does karaoke into the early hours that was attended on a few occasions during my placement. In Bristol, however, there is a large, varied nightlife, and several people do live in Bristol and travel in to Bath.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There are a lot of weekly activities organised by BuroHappold, with lunchtime activities (such as yoga, running, circuits) and activities after work (including badminton). There are also less frequent activities organised by individual teams and the Young Engineers Forum, such as trips to play softball in a nearby park. I also had the opportunity to attend the Bristol Balloon Fiesta with some of the other interns.