Analyst - Summer Intern at Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl)

Internship (1-4 Months)
Review Date
Armed Forces/Military Public Sector/Governmental Science/Research

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The Role
The Company
The Culture

Role Description

Analyst within the DSA division of DSTL.

The Role

1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?

I found this placement very stimulating due to the varied nature of work that I was given and the responsibility entrusted in me to complete challenging and fast-faced tasks. Overall it was my most enjoyable placement to date and I would recommend it to others in similar fields or interests.
5 /5

2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?

My colleagues were very supportive of me and treated me as one of their own. Whenever I needed assistance there was someone to help and everyone was very approachable and passionate about their work. DSTL has an excellent workplace culture which in turn creates an excellent environment to work and learn in.
5 /5

3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?

My supervisor was always on hand to help me with any questions I had and showed an active interest in my work and my development within the workplace. She proactively sought to involve me in challenging tasks whilst also giving me responsibility to manage my workload and tasking on my own terms.
5 /5

4. How busy were you on a daily basis?

I found that with effective tasking and workload management aided by internal mechanisms within DSTL I could strike a balance between peaks and troughs in demand. Whilst I was usually busy throughout the day, I never felt overwhelmed and could complete tasks at a pace which suited myself and my colleagues.
5 /5

5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?

I was given much more responsibility than I had anticipated before starting the placement and was given ample opportunity to take proactive steps in my work where I saw fit. At the same time, I was given lots of opportunities to get feedback and reflection on my work which will help me in the long run.
4 /5

6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?

As DSTL is a dynamic and fast paced working environment, I was given lots of opportunities to put newly learnt skills to the test straight away. Whilst I learnt a variety of new skills in my role, I was also given the freedom to use skills which I brought to the workplace to benefit my work.
5 /5

The Company

7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?

The workplace culture was very appealing to me as everyone was very approachable and passionate about their work and their profession. There was a clear emphasis on life-long learning at DSTL shown by various events organised on-site to promote learning and reflection. Overall the atmosphere was perfect for anyone who shares these traits.
5 /5

8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?

My work schedule was very well organised with the help of my supervisor and others at DSTL. I felt like I was properly accounted for in the office and never felt out of place or like I was a burden in any situation. Special arrangements are also made for new starters in terms of socialising and being welcomed throughout their internship.
4 /5

9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?

There were many resources available to me to up skill me for different tasks within the workplace. Personal training was provided alongside completing my various tasks so that it was immediately applicable. I also felt like colleagues were eager to help me with any development needs I had on the job.
4 /5

10. What were the perks on your work placement?

  • Flexi Time
  • Subsidised Canteen
  • Sports and Social Club
  • Subsidised/Company Gym
  • National Travel
  • International Travel
  • Company Parties/Events
  • Above 25 days holiday
  • Working from home
  • Travel loan
4 /5

11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?

Upon completion of my placement I was offered a graduate role within the same division at DSTL as well as sponsorship for my masters degree. I was extremely grateful for this and felt like my hard work over the summer was recognised and valued. I look forward to returning to DSTL upon the completion of my degree!
5 /5

The Culture

12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?

DSTL actively encouraged and facilitated social events between placement students and new starters. At a more informal level, all of the other placement students I had the pleasure of meeting were all very friendly and keen to share their experiences. There was a nice mix of experience and background amongst us and I felt there was a good level of support for each other.
4 /5

13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?

I lived in Portsmouth during my placement and commuted to Fareham, Portsmouth itself is relatively cheap and offers a wide variety of living accommodation for different budgets so this was not an issue for me. The majority of social events organised by DSTL took part in Portsmouth itself which isn't an issue as they are relatively close to one another.
4 /5

14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?

Portsmouth is a big student city in part due to the university there, so there are a number of nightclubs/bars/pubs to choose from to suit your particular taste. I have found it to be a safe area also and have never experienced any issues in this regard having lived here for over 3 years.
5 /5

15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?

DSTL offers a number of varied and fun out of work activities and social events which anyone can take part in, from sports to BBQs. The activities are scheduled in advance and are a good way to meet new people and to explore what the local area has to offer.
4 /5