Intern within the CTO - PM, Engineering & Support team.
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I enjoyed the tasks I was set and the people I was working with.
Most of my colleagues were super friendly and helpful.
The company as a whole isn't very diverse.
Personally I struggled with the moral complications of working for a defence company. Before starting my internship I thought being in Head Office would be detached enough for me, but I've learnt that the environmental and defence elements aren't something I could get on board with.
Despite this I did still enjoy my internship.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Only made to feel like an intern a handful of times, and those times were always by people not within the team I was working with.
I felt like my opinion was valued and the pieces of work I did for colleagues was really valued.
I was also given a fair amount of responsibility which also made me feel valued by the team.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
My direct team were very supportive and helpful. Whenever I needed guidance I could go to any member of my team.
They were all also open to giving career advice, sharing personal insights and staying in contact in the future.
There didn't seem to be any support/guidance from BAES themselves.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
There were a few days when I didn't have anything to do, on those days I'd do research around the tasks I'd been set. As the internship progressed these days became less regular, but still existed.
Near the end of the internship there seemed to be not enough time for everything that the team want the interns to do.
This could've been better structured so that at the beginning we didn't have so many back-to-back empty days and at the end everything didn't feel rushed.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
There was one task were I was given full responsibility. From setting up meetings to gaining insights to booking venues.
There were a few tasks were I was given some responsibility. I was able to set up meetings with people I believed were relevant to the tasks & create presentations myself that provided the information from these meetings.
Then there were one or two tasks were I was given no responsibility. It was 'here do this' instructions with no flexibility to make it my own.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I have definitely improved my communication, presentation, problem solving and team work skills. These will all be applicable to my degree and when it comes to applying for graduate roles.
One useful element that I myself never really thought of was the ability to write professional emails. During this internship I had to write a lot of emails, so I now feel confident in my email writing skills.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The office was always a bit quiet, there was only the odd day when it was busy.
On Fridays the office was always a ghost town, there were multiple Fridays were myself and the other interns were the only employees in. It would have been nice if we were also allowed to work from home on Fridays. As being alone in the office was a bit disheartening.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
Didn't receive a lot of information before starting, would've been good to have more detail before the first day.
Took quite a few days for my laptop to start working, would've been good if this could've been sorted sooner.
As said above, the work load could've been more spaced out to fill up the whole 12 weeks.
Everything that was organised during the internship always seemed rushed and last minute.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
Underwent basic introduction training that all new employees have to undertake.
Myself and other interns were told we'd undergo some training, but nothing ever came of this.
No real personal training for interns.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
As mentioned above, I would not apply to work for BAE again as I'm not comfortable working in a defence company.
I also believe, even without the defence aspect, the environmental impact of a company that produces products that use a lot of fossil fuels is enough for me to not want to return.
Also, the company seems very behind in many aspects. Especially when it comes to diversity in its workforce and encouraging an inclusive culture.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There were only 6 summer interns in Head Office. We all lived far away from each other.
All my colleagues were older and also lived far away from the office.
The only social activities were football and knitting, which were very hard to find any information about.
In previous years there has been the availability to meet more summer interns, but this was cancelled this year.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
My family home was just around the corner from the office. As said above there was no socialising.
It isn't a cheap area.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
As mentioned above there was no socialising. The office is not close to transport links meaning everyone drives, so after work drinks was never an option.
On top of this everyone in the office seems in a rush to get home at the end of the day.
The closest night club to Farnborough is a 10+ minute drive away.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
As mentioned above, there was football and knitting.
The football was for men, and very hard to get information about.
The knitting was only mentioned to me when I suggested there should be more social activities ('we have knitting').
No real opportunity to get involved or any information about how to start your own social activity.