I really enjoyed my time at Air Products, from my first day I was treated as another member of the team undertaking work which created real valve for the company. The social aspect of working in this company with many placement students and recent graduates was very good. The company has a positive forward thinking culture and there was a focus on opportunities for further training, particularly when it came to operations and office safety.
Everyone I worked with in my industrial placement year with air products was very welcoming and willing to take the time to explain technical concepts. This allowed me to gain a good level of understanding of the process technology early in my year long placement, which in turn allowed me to contribute more valuable work in return. Those I worked with also made me feel valued by letting me know where I could improve my work, which showed they had an interest in my development.
The work I produced was reviewed individually by my supervisor or as part of early engineering development which proved invaluable in developing my engineering skill set. The graduate community is a very effective support network allowing you to get questions answered about all different areas of the business without the need to go to a more senior member of staff with every question. Career talks were held by senior members of staff about their progression and to offer advice as well as guidance on gaining engineering chartership.
The workload was high enough to keep me engaged in varied and interesting work, without overloading me. It gave enough room to get involved with other activities such as STEM education outreach with liquid nitrogen demonstrations to local school, careers fairs and so on. On a few occasions when the workload was high I would stay longer at the office, but the working hours were flexible and I was never pressured into working over my contract hours.
I was given lots of responsibility on a wide range of projects and tasks. Towards the second half of my placement I was the lead for a few projects, with oversight from my supervisor. A high level of responsibility was given to all of the placement students. The work I undertook was a key piece in the puzzle of engineering development of air separation plants. Like studying or any job the more effort you put into an opportunity the more you are likely to get out of it.
I undertook this placement year after completing three years of an integrated masters for chemical engineering. Many of the skills I gained were applied, and then developed over my time at air products. I received training with industry standard software that improves my employability in the engineering sector. I was fortunate with my role to gain a wide range of exposure to different engineering disciplines which helped me to decide what i wanted to do when once I graduate.
Placement Year (10 Months+)
Chemical Engineering, Computer and Systems Engineering
4th August 2020