Fixing bugs and adding features to a software product.
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
It was a great experience. I had never before worked on such a large software (PowerMILL has like, what, 3M lines of code?) and it definitely improved my skill as a programmer.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Not that much. As I said, the software I was working on was huge, so only at the very end did I start to feel really comfortable working with it. As such, I did not have much of an impact on development.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
When I got such my supervisors was always there for me. They even answered questions unrelated to the tasks in hand. It is a weird feeling, learning more about programming during a 30 min talk with your supervisor than during a whole day at your university.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
It was ok. I did have a habit of trying to solve all of the problems on my own, so I did get bored (since I achieved little), but that is my fault rather than that of the internship.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
Again, I was working on big software, an internee will not get much pull in this. I did get to work on features that customers asked for over and over again, for which my colleagues just didn't have the time for. As such, I did feel like I had a responsibility to do this right so the customer might be happy.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I don't think the skills gained here will help my degree, since I won't be writing 3M lines of code for my final year project (hopefully). They will help me in finding a job later on, though. Software is getting bigger and bigger by the day, and if you have the skills to wrap your head around it and work with it, you will not regret having them.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
It was quiet most of the time, with only the tictacs of keyboards. It was not gloomy or anything like that, just quiet, everyone concentrated on their own tasks.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The flat I lived in was managed by Delcam, so I had a place to stay right after I arrived. On my first day of work my work computer had already been set up, so there were no delays. My manager explained my task to me and that was it, my internship started.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
Delcam provided a 2 week long training course at the beginning of the internship. So about 20% of the whole internship you would spend on learning rather than working.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Sports and Social Club
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
They already provided me with a new contract. It does not get any better than that.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Most of us lived in the same house and every morning and evening we took the same bus. Each of us went to a different department, so there was not much interaction during work hours, though.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Quite expensive, I guess. I lived in a Flat managed by Delcam, so the accommodation costs were covered from my pay check. I didn't need to provide any money on my own, I simply received a smaller salary. No idea about socialising, not into that kind of stuff.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
No idea, my nightlife consisted of sleeping.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There was a Delcam climbing club and a Delcam carting club. I think there were a few others, but I can't remember them at the moment. They are subsidised, so Delcam covers part of the cost (instead for 7£ for a climbing session, you only have to pay 3.50£). There was no going home club, though.