1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
The project I was assigned was incredibly unusual and provided a lot of scope for enjoyable work. I enjoyed being able to work on a unique project, as a consultant to an external company, and had opportunity to develop interpersonal as well as technical skills.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
All the people in my department were very welcoming and all came and introduced themselves over the first week. Our intern project was separate to those who worked full time there, meaning we were relaticely self contained, but people regularly came and asked how we were doing or to just find out more about our project.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
We were given training over the first week to ensure we had the necessary skills to get started on the project, and then as and when we needed it over the rest of the internship. We were also all assigned mentors who could often stop by to fix any issues we might be having. Our manager was sitting a couple of desks away and would always be on hand to answer any question we had
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
It varied quite alot, some days we had absolutely loads to do, some days were really slow, but that was probably due to the nature of the project more than anything else. Most days consisted of replying to emails first thing then cracking on with work we'd set ourselves the previous day. Work normally consisted of using the Autodesk software to create CAD models, but sometimes involved using hardware to gather information on the object we were modelling.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
We were pretty much left to our own devices in terms of interacting with our clients. We'd email them to keep them updated with progress, and they'd email us with their questions. We were always able to check decisions we made with our manager, but on the whole were quite self sufficient.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I developed a strong set of interpersonal skills, such as interacting with clients and colleaugues which will certainly help as I start out in a career. The technical skills I gained were probably quite specific to the company, and don't really link to my course (Mechanical Engineering), this may be due to the fact my course is very theoretical rather than practical.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The office was really well furnished, having undergone a refurb just before we arrived. Everyone was really friendly and chatty and always prepared to help. The office was by no means silent with everyone keeping their heads down, it much more relaxed. There were a couple of lunch time social events, such as a birthday party, which were good fun.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
Overall, quite well. We had a relatively self contained project which we could work on for the duration of our internship. Training was always given when it was required, the project itself was interesting and allowed us to use many of the companies products. It wasn't the classic internship where we were only asked to make cups of tea!
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Above 25 days holiday
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There were a couple of social activities organised in the first week to welcome the new interns/grads to the company, like going to play frisbee golf and going for a meal which helped ease us in. Later on in the placement another social took place, all at the expense of the comany. We were all also offered the opportunity to join in with weekly football matches or other sports if we wanted.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
It could be quite tricky to find a house to rent just for the duration of the placement. I was luckily ble to stay with friends, but others who didn't study in the city struggled to find a room to rent for a reasonable price. Cost of socialising relatively standard, no higher than most places in the midlands, and certainly cheaper than London.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?