1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I really enjoyed my placement year at Lubrizol Hazelwood, having the opportunity and responsibility to work on a wide range of projects was a great challenge. I was expected and had to use my engineering knowledge and skills on a daily basis along with a team of engineers which helped me develop in all areas.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I felt very valued and appreciated by my colleagues. I got to work with a large range of people with different specialisms both inside and out of my department which was great as i got to meet a lot of new people within the company. At every point i was made to feel welcome and encouraged to put forward my ideas and opinions.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I personally felt there could've been more structure in the beginning of my placement as it was very loose. However most people are very approachable and willing to provide their expertise/guidance whenever asked so this became less of an issue as i became more settled within the company. I also had 3 mentors that i could go to for advice/support with any issues.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I had a manageable amount of work throughout my placement and if at any point i felt like my day wasn't filled then there was always someone with a job that they needed help doing. As it is a testing role there were days when there wasnt as much work and days where everything seemed to go wrong but Lubrizol were good in ensuring i never got overloaded
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
As my placement progressed and my colleagues got to learn more of my capabilities i got more responsibility of my own. During my time along side helping running an industry standard test, i got to develop my own test profile and test rig for two different internal projects within Lubrizol. This gave me invaluable project management skills that i can take into my final year.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
With Lubrizol being such a large company it meant i got exposure to the whole cycle of a product and how my role assists with each area. I also got the opportunity to be involved with projects outside of engineering like STEM which helped develop other skills aside from the technical areas that i study at university.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere in my office was fantastic. The two engineers i shared an office with were always up for a laugh, even if it was mostly at me! They knew their stuff and were always extremely supportive with any issues i was having with the role or my projects. Everyone else within my department were very welcoming and always there to help and the management team are very approachable.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
There is a well structured introduction plan which sees you through the first month of your placement. There are lots of meet and greets with the whole site in every department to ensure you've got a point of contact if ever you need it. Further to this i got continued support throughout my placement which was very reassuring.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
I got plenty of training both formal and on the job to make sure i had the technical skills to complete my job. I got to attend talks chaired by both internal and external candidates and given opportunities to present work to the organisation. I also got exposure in the chemistry side of the additive industry through talks with senior fellows on site.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Sports and Social Club
Above 25 days holiday
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Sadly Lubrizol do not offer a formal graduate scheme and staff turnover is relatively low meaning job opportunities can be scarce. However this is not to say its impossible as many students have returned to work with the company
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
I found the social scene to be very good amongst the students. I lived with 4 other students and with there being around 30 on site, there was always something going on from drinks, meals out etc. Lubrizol also run events such as go-karting with the entire site periodically throughout the year.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Derby is a relatively cheap place to live with rent being very reasonable. It has a large shopping centre with loads of the normal food restaurants and bars so its not too expensive. There is also a few parks with crazy golf, a lake to go rowing in etc to keep yourself entertained.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
Being a student city there are lots of bars and a few nightclubs to go out for drinks. There is also an excellent bus service to Nottingham which runs until 3am so theres always an event to go to. I found Derby better for drinks that nightclubbing but again loughborough and nottingham arent too far away.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Lubrizol runs a sports and social club which holds lots of events throughout the year including go-karting, 5 aside football, go ape etc. They also run trips to cities such as york and london as well as munro-bagging to scotland which is very popular amongst the site. The sports and social club is also subsidised so the cost is very reasonable.