Acting as a general support across all marketing functions.
I have been very pleased with my placement thus far. I have been made to feel like a valued member of the team, doing and assisting with tasks that have a potentially international level of impact. The global and successful nature of the company has afforded me the opportunity to do things such as travel, help organize global events and work with colleagues from all over the world,
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As mentioned, from the very start of my placement I felt as if I was a valued member of the marketing team. My first week in the role was spent at a large commercial marine exhibition and global product launch, and I have been heavily involved in a number of other global events since.
As I had never previously worked or even been exposed to the engineering sector before, I arrived very much a novice. My supervisor and fellow colleagues were very understanding and reassuring, and gave me a good foundation of knowledge that left me feeling much more confident and that I was in a better position to fulfill my role.
There was often a consistent stream of work for me to complete day-to-day, however as I worked primarily on the trade shows and exhibitions, there would sometimes be a fluctuation in how busy I was. Some months would be relatively bare, whereas some months held a couple of large events, meaning a lot more work to complete. However I still very much enjoyed this high pressure environment.
Aside from being involved in many high-profle events, as soon as I entered in to the role I was entrusted with multiple company items. A company card, phone, laptop and backpack, as well as all the confidential information I was exposed to and trusted with showed me that the company had full faith and trust in my abilities. This in turn helped increase my own self confidence.
I have no doubt that the skills I have both learned and developed during my time with the company will stay with me beyond my studies. Aside from the marketing specific knowledge, I gained experience working in an office environment, attending weekly meetings with shareholders from around the globe, working to tight deadlines and all of the disciplinary skills that come with such experiences. I will certainly go back to university a better student, having extensive experience with time management, prioritization of tasks and working to tight deadlines.
Everyone got along with each other, and although it was a place of work, the atmosphere seemed nice and relaxed most of the time which made for a less stressful work environment. There were facilities such as a ping pong table in the canteen that were very useful for de-stressing during a busy day.
Cummins had taken on many placement students before me, meaning that they were experienced in dealing with having a student in the office. I was in frequent contact with HR before my placement started, who answered any questions I had about the contract and the role. The team were also used to having a student among them, so I was given appropriate work and was put to good use as a marketing assistant.
One of the things that surprised me the most was how readily my supervisor was willing to offer me experiences that would benefit me in the long run. I was astounded at how much emphasis was put on me coming away from the placement with as many skills as possible to boost my CV. I was given the opportunity to travel, work with senior employees on large scale projects and allowed to develop key skills whilst doing so.
As I'm still figuring out what I really want to do long term, I am unsure as to whether my future lies with Cummins. This has no reflection on the company or my experiences, but I feel that it is best to keep an open mind. However, if I was offered a graduate place, it doesn't mean I wouldn't seriously consider the proposal.
My office was fairly small and had only one other placement student on-site, and the majority of my colleagues commuted from places outside of Wellingborough. There were a few opportunities to socialize at sports and social events, but meeting outside of work with colleagues was a rarity.
Wellingborough has a few budget supermarkets in the centre that help to keep the cost of the weekly shop down, and the rent is fairly student-friendly. There is a small shopping centre and a few small bars, restaurants and cafes that make for a reasonably priced evening out with friends.
Being a relatively small town, Wellingborough didn't offer many options to go out on the weekend with friends like you would at university. However on a positive note, I saved myself a lot of money and it is much healthier to not go out drinking once or twice a week. It is close to Northampton though which has a better nightlife, and there are good transport links to places like Birmingham, Coventry, Nottingham and Leciester if you feel like visiting any friends at their university.
There were opportunities if you were prepared to travel. I joined a tennis club on the outskirts of Northampton and both trained and played matches for them throughout my placement. It was only 15-20 minutes by car so being able to drive was vital. There were also initiatives such as a group of colleagues would play 5 a side once a week after work which I frequently participated in.