1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I very much enjoyed my time at BAE Systems, the opportunity was one which was engaging and interesting, stretching my previous university knowledge to an extent which was achievable but challenging. Each day at the company was different and meant that I looked forward to going into work each day.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
From the outset the team were very welcoming and interested to involve me in discussion and team projects. Throughout the placement my responsibility for tasks grew as I became more comfortable with the ways of doing things and more aware of the work which was going on. My colleagues were always interested in my opinions and my input was always valued.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
The team and my supervisors were always keen to support me with any issues I had. Of course everyone around me was busy, but I never felt that I couldn't ask questions and was always encouraged to speak up if I had any questions or felt that I did not understand something.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
The nature of the placement was that work came in periods of business and quietness. However, my colleagues were excellent at sharing that work and ensuring that no one person was too busy or had nothing to do, including me. As such, I always had a variety of tasks for which I was responsible, but it was never overwhelming.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
My responsibility for tasks grew throughout my placement, as I became more familiar with the work and gained greater understanding. The work for which I was responsible gave me a good idea of what work I would be doing following graduation and has made me want to pursue it further.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
Having returned to university, I have already noticed a difference in the way in which I work. The opportunity to work in an environment has certainly made changes to my working style and has ensured that my degree studies will be better developed than they had been before the placement. Equally, the immersion in industry has made me aware of many considerations of which I did not previously know, giving my work more depth and pratical relevance.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The office was busy and everyone had a lot to do, but equally everyone was extremely friendly and keen to make me (and other newcomers) feel welcome. No one was ever too busy to have a chat if it was needed and there were always things going on. My colleagues were sociable and genuinely interested in the internship programme.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The company programme is an enormous undertaking, involving many different factions of the company. A lot of organisation had clearly gone into the organisation ahead of our arrival which meant our placements were prepared for our arrival and the induction was very helpful in getting us set up at the start of our placement.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
My supervisor and line manager were both very invested in my development and ensuring I got the most out of my placement I could. While there were no specific training courses, I learnt a huge amount from the completion of my tasks, thanks to the work provided for me by my supervisors.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Having completed my placement I am very keen to return to the company again as a summer intern and then hopefully in the future as a graduate. The work I completed was interesting and the way the company is run is very appealing. The opportunity for flexi working is brilliant and hugely advantageous.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There was a good social scene amongst all the interns and graduates and people all kept in contact. The induction at the start of our placement involved all the interns and industrial placements and so allowed us all to meet each other and socialise, and discuss our different experiences as students and interns.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I was able to complete my placement in the city in which I already live, so it was less expensive than it may have been otherwise. On the whole, even the city centre isnt punitively expensive, and the actual area of the yard is very affordable, both to live and socialise.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The city centre nightlife is always good and always busy and the public transport to and from the centre is regular, so even if you don't live centrally the option is there. The area around the yard doesn't have much of a nightlife, but people generally chose to go in to town for the evening.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
The interns and graduates had a good network of socialising and were regularly busy with activities. In addition, the visiting interns and industrial placements often organised activities to get up to on weekends to explore the city and country as well as fun activities to socialise with one and other.